Message from the Editor
As I write this message today, I know there are many anxieties and fears in many hearts, and a lot of suffering and sadness resulting from the effects of the pandemic that is sweeping the world. Christian congregations are facing conditions unprecedented in their lifetimes, and many people are wondering what the future holds.
Youthful Days is a Christian Gospel magazine for young people. Bible based, its central theme is the need for a personal link with Jesus as Saviour and Lord. No pandemic will ever change that need, though through it God in His goodness may awaken hearts to realise their need of Him. And the good news is that God is for you, not against you, and Youthful Days is written to help you discover God’s way of salvation and find the peace that He alone can give.
Some sample editorials from recent issues of Youthful Days are printed below:
Standing still is not something that comes easily to us when we are young. How often have we heard a parent’s exasperated “Will you stand still?” as a high-spirited child dances from foot to foot, or chases some imaginary interest instead of waiting patiently. After all, it’s much more exciting to discover what’s round the corner than just standing still – that’s really boring!
But that is just what Job needed to do, according to our cover verse this month. And it wasn’t because Job was high-spirited – far from it, he was in most unfavourable circumstances that he had certainly never planned, and he really couldn’t understand why God had allowed them all.
God speaks to our hearts in many ways, but are we listening? The Bible tells of many times when God spoke to people, but they didn’t always want to hear. Maybe you’ve heard the gospel message of the Saviour, Jesus, but did you realise that God was speaking to you? Were you listening? Maybe your mind was more on plans for what you would do after the gospel finished!
This month, I’ve been given a lovely poem entitled “Be Still” which I’ve printed on the back page for you to read – and yes, I really would like you to read it. As you do so, let its words sink into your heart and mind. Hear its message – listen! And when you get to the last verse, take time to be still - just for little while! – and take time to consider carefully what God is saying to you.
[Note: The poem referred to in this editorial is included as a
extracted from the Sept 2020 issue of Youthful Days
My Times are in Thy Hand
As I was reading from one of the Psalms in the Bible today, I came across this verse. It came as a reminder to me that the whole of my life is in the hand of the One whom I’ve trusted to be my Saviour. As I’m sure you know, just at the moment there are many fears and uncertainties in many parts of the world, so I wanted to pass this verse on to you because if it gives me courage and comfort, it can do the same for you.
So, what are these “times” that are in God’s hand? They’re the ups and downs of life that we all know something about - the bad days and the good days, our sickness and our health, our disappointments and fears. But of one thing we can be sure – if we’ve committed our lives into God’s hands, we’re in safe keeping. And that’s something worth knowing, for when no-one’s quite sure what lies around the corner, we can have peace and assurance because we’re in the hands of a Saviour God.
So how do we find that peace and assurance? Through trusting in the Saviour, Jesus, whom God has provided. Maybe even today, as further events unfold, God will awaken your heart to feel your need of Him. Let me assure you, His eye is upon you, and He’s able and willing to save you and forgive you, whatever your sins may be. Reach out today and trust and believe. You’re in His hand.
extracted from the Jul 2020 issue of Youthful Days
Two sides of the Story
How do you view the picture on our cover this month? Do you love the snowy covering, the excitement of wrapping up in a warm coat and boots, kicking your way through drifts of soft snow? Do you not mind the cold on your face and hands as you gather balls of snow for friendly battles with your schoolmates, and the numbness of your toes as ice finds its way down inside your boots, and soaks your socks? Maybe you’re one who “can’t wait” for the snow to come!
For others, maybe a look at our picture will bring less-exciting memories of cold, dark winter months, of treacherous walkways and slippery roads and paths. Perhaps the anxiety of falling keeps them indoors and, much against their will, they must depend on others to bring them their shopping.
The Bible tells us a wonderful true story about salvation – but there are two sides to that too!
On the one side, all of us have done wrong (sinned), and one day we will all have to give an account of ourselves to God. The Bible tells us, “There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10).
But on the other side, we learn “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
Make sure you understand and accept both sides of the gospel story. You will find untold blessing and happiness when you do.
extracted from the Jan 2020 issue of Youthful Days
Food that Satisfies
During the winter months, food is scarce for wildlife, and often the animals and birds that visit our gardens find it hard to survive. Weeks of harsh weather, when the frost hardens the ground and the bushes lose their berries, make the search for food much harder work than normal. So, when the good weather arrives and the sun warms the ground, the wildlife around us has to quickly make up time to compensate for the leaner months.
The squirrel on our cover this month seems to be enjoying his feast. He may not be the most popular of animals to have in our gardens, for he can get up to all sorts of mischief, but I thought he would remind us of the need that we all have of good wholesome food. And whilst, for most of us it is, in God’s goodness, usually readily available, we must not forget the importance of the food that Jesus spoke about “which abides unto eternal life” (John 6:27).
This is food that everyone needs. It’s food that dispels our fears and anxieties, and provides an anchor for our souls in times of uncertainty. It’s food that gives us hope and peace in God, a sure foundation that can never be shaken, in the midst of a world where nothing’s sure. It’s food that fills the heart with peace and joy, just by turning to Jesus in repentance and trusting in His precious work.
My prayer is that, in reading Youthful Days this month, you will find something that will lead you to realise your need of Jesus as your Saviour, and to discover in your Bible the food that really satisfies.
extracted from the May 2020 issue of Youthful Days
It’s always good to start every New Year with a question about something that really matters. Last year has somehow slipped away, together with opportunities missed or fulfilled, and we can’t change that. Perhaps last year brought challenges too, and possibly a few disappointments. Most years are a mix of joys and sadness, and 2019 is unlikely to be any different. But when we come to a New Year, it’s a sharp reminder that time is slipping away, and have we made those decisions that we really should?
It’s a good time to start, and the title at the top of this page is a good place to start too. Every one of us needs to answer this question – and no better time than now, as the bible says “Now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Even if you have attended church and Christian meetings regularly during the past year, that’s still not enough. You need to know your sins forgiven, and you personally need a Saviour. It’s something that, come what may in 2019, matters more than anything else.
The little robin on our cover this month is in full song. Maybe he’s been counting his blessings, and has discovered that he had more than he thought! But the greatest blessing of all is to know Jesus as your Saviour. I pray that you may realise your need of Him, and that you too will know the wondrous blessing of being SAVED!
extracted from the Jan 2019 issue of Youthful Days
How can we know The Way?
How many times have we asked this question? Perhaps we’re in a large city, surrounded by a bewildering array of buildings and roads that all look the same, with no clue anywhere of our desired destination. We ask a passer-by and they give directions, but then soon we’re lost again and we ask someone else who sends us in the opposite direction! Who knows the way? Who can we believe?
Or perhaps we’re in the countryside, not a road in sight, no passers-by either. We try to work out the way we’ve come and pinpoint our position on our map, but nothing seems very conclusive. Finally, we set off in the hope that we’ll soon reach a signpost that we recognize, but without any real conviction that we’re heading the right way.
There is something to be said for a track of rails, invisible in our cover picture but there nevertheless, defining the route that our little train needs to take, but even then it’s possible to go the wrong way if the track divides. But Youthful Days will tell you of a way that is certain, and of someone you can always trust to be your unerring guide.
Christianity is not a track of rules from which you never deviate,
but there is a pathway for every believer in the Lord Jesus that
keeps within the boundaries of scripture truth. It opened up
when Jesus died at Calvary to wash your sins away, and Jesus told
His disciples about it as you can see from our cover verse.
Find out more about it, for it’s the way that leads to life.
extracted from the July 2017 issue of Youthful