Here’s an article I wrote for a recent publication. It’s written for them young whippersnappers, but you old(er) folks might also appreciate it…
Today I had to google the word swag to make sure I was using it properly. Thankfully I was, but from the stuff I read, it didn’t seem like it was possible to misuse it. Like this article, for instance—it’s pretty swag, right? (Okay, maybe you can misuse it.)
Every day something new pops up, from language, to technology, to politics. I honestly don’t know how you guys keep up. I got my very first cell phone about 7 years ago, and now I can’t remember life without one. How did I ever survive a trip to the grocery store without this little piece of technology? Wouldn’t the world simply disintegrate into nothing if not for smartphones? Did God not hang the entire universe upon a cell phone tower? I’m pretty sure that’s in Genesis somewhere.
Times are changing, and it can be hard for some to keep up. Strangely enough, though, some things have not changed. In fact, many of the issues you’re currently dealing with have already been dealt with by your parents, and their parents, and even by your parents’ parents’ parents!
Pornography is not new, just more easily accessible. That jealousy issue you’re dealing with amongst your friends—also not new. Bullying has been happening for years, just not on Facebook. It’s easy for you to keep up with the changes, but us older folks can sometimes be a bit behind. This causes what we often call a “generation gap.” And I sometimes wonder if it makes you guys feel isolated in your problems, as if no one but your generation understands what you’re going through.
Yet, while society continues to change at an alarming rate, human nature remains the same. And while Mom, Dad, Grandma, and Grandpa may not have had enough swag (did I use it right that time?) to deal with Facebook bullies or Internet pornography, they sure knew how to deal with insecurity, jealousy, fear, and sexual temptation.
So as you ponder along with me about how the world continued to turn in the land before smartphones and Internet, pause to learn a life lesson or two from those dinosaurs we know as parents, teachers, and leaders. They were around before iPads, Facebook, and “the Twitter.” But just because they don’t know how to work the xbox or the flatscreen TV, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re completely clueless about life.
Maybe they do have a little swag, after all (nailed it).
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