Let the young party it is their time: Who cares about vises. Right?
Every generation goes through the growing pains. There is no one person who can claim that he or she did not grow up in an older generation that thought the young generation was mad! Name any generation that does not go through what young people are going through in Africa, and specifically in Kenya. The thing is, so what the kids got drunk and unruly in Machakos 7s. If I was a teenager and the gig was happening near my village, and my parents were sleeping, maybe I would attend?
Some of us are a generation of disco. We could sing with Millie Jackson, “bad risk”. This generation had a special way of dancing. They would bump each other while moving around. Sounds crazy now but it was the in thing then. Each generation has some form of entertainment, which the parents of that generation think is against the Biblical moral code! Remember Mzee Jomo Kenyatta banning mini skirts? Girls loved those short things. Each generation has vises.
In the Old Testament God constantly calls Israel an adulterous nation. The prophet Amos shouts out, “ . . . I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies. Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings of your fat beasts. Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols. But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream.” (Amos 5:21ff) He is talking about moral degradation in that society.
This issue of moral degradation is not isolated to specific epochs. Moral deprivation is a state of man. God created ADAM after His image and after his likeness. (Genesis 1: 26) He, “ . . . breathed into him his breath and ADAM became a living soul.” (Genesis 2:7) Thus, man has Divinity in him. That is why man is guaranteed to live forever either in Heaven or in what we call Hell. This is because that which was put into matter (man) was God’s breath (Spirit) and since God cannot die, that spirit (breath) of God cannot die: It is eternal. It calls man to morality. After the fall, matter was cursed to death and degradation. (Genesis 3:17ff)
The thing that is not often mentioned is that God removed the tree of life after MAN sinned, to protect THEM against living forever in the state of degradation. But the tree of life exists, protected by the Cherubim. It is offered outside of matter: Through Christ for the believer, and eternal damnation for the apostate (Genesis 3: 23-24)
The problem of morality emanates from this state of matter that was cursed. It is matter that submitted to SATAN in the beginning and it submits still. Jesus said, “the spirit is willing (the breath of God) but the flesh is week (matter)(Mathew 26:41) Therefore every child born into the earth, given that they are matter will submit to this urge to rebellion, sex, drunkenness, hate, jealousy, depression and all kinds of vises. St Paul lamented this sin nature. “ . . . Things I want to do I do not . . .”(Romans 7:15ff) There is nothing children can do about this. Depravity is the nature of man. The issue is adults!
In the same way adults (parents) have an obligation to nurture the flesh so that through milk, bananas, ugali, chips and sausages the body of a child grows, so also do they have an obligation to nurture the spirit. Unfortunately, in the name of modernity, parents assume that morality grows on trees. That their children will just pick them up on the way to school and eat it.
I confess I never went to a disco outside of the controlled boarding high school dance. The teachers moved around the room to make sure no hanky panky. You see in my village, no alcohol joints, no cigarette joints, or discos. We played basketball, and cards with my father. One day I came home wearing a necklace. It was golden! My mother scratched my neck removing it. “Are you a gangster now. What are you going to wear next?” My father heard the commotion. He said, “Son, I am a pastor! When you walk out of this house, you represent me and your mother.” That put breaks in my turn to moral degradation. Guaranteed perfection? Far from it! But it protected a young man from so much crap! And there was no HIV AIDS then!
Teddy Njoroge Kamau (PhD) HTBluff Associates. #HTBluff