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  • Writer's pictureNext Generation IMPACT

Changing Times, Unchanging Message: Reaching Generation Alpha

A vintage record player with a record

Were you around when the 33 1/3 LP record was introduced? If so, you are officially old! Ninety two years ago on September 17, 1931, RCA Victor unveiled the 33 1/3 Long Play (LP) record. After the 33 1/3 rpm came the smaller 45 record. After the 45, though, there was the 8 track cartridge. Then came the cassette, the CD, XM radio, then downloads, and finally - digital streaming. What's next? Nobody knows. But friends in the music industry say we’ll never permanently go back to physical copies of music. The point? We can’t expect today’s youth to understand yesterday’s context.

What would happen if I asked some 8 year olds to use the 33 1/3 LP record? Some may fly it across the room like a FRISBEE. Some may not know what it is. They have no context to understand it. They didn’t experience it like we did and have no frame of reference for how it is to be used. People change culture then culture changes people.

Many in this present generation did not grow up when there were records, corded phones, and long attention spans! They have been born during the digital revolution. Social media, technology of every sort, facial recognition, and big brother surveillance is what they know. And not only are they comfortable with it, they accept that everybody knows everything about what you do online, including your personal life, work life and even finances.

A timeline starting at 2010 and moving onward; a pushpin labeled "Generation Alpha" is at the 2010 mark

Generation Alpha are defined as those born from 2010-2024. More than 2.5 million are born globally every week. When they have all been born (by January 1, 2025), they will number almost 2 billion, the largest generation in the history of the world. Many of them will live to see the year 2100! Wrap your head around that one. We can't use yesterday's tools to reach this next generation! They don't want to be told; they want to be shown. They don't like lectures; they like conversation and interaction. They like discovery learning. They are a different breed from any previous generation and are likely to be the "warrior" generation, fighting to the death for causes they believe in and that are unfamiliar to the rest of us.

Thankfully, some old things have become popular again. LPs (now called EPs - extended play) are making a comeback for some now popular musical artists. With so much dramatic change from generation to generation, I’m glad there’s one thing that never, ever changes - JESUS CHRIST! The Good News of Jesus is the only thing that can change the hearts of people in every generation until the end of time.

Our vision scripture is Psalm 78 - telling the next generation of God’s glory so they will set their hope on Him. Is your desire to reach the present generation and their families? Have you said yes to getting outside the walls of your church? If so, Next Generation IMPACT Foundation wants to encourage, support, and cheer you on by paying for all your materials, training, and ongoing support. Our materials are relevant to issues facing kids today and give God’s worldview in every lesson. They are taught how to stand up for the faith in a faithless culture.

This is your ministry, not ours. Strengthen and change it as you see fit for the kids you’re attempting to reach. God commissioned the church to be the vehicle of His grace. And we will help you in any way possible.

We now have ministry partners in GA, OK, NC, SC, TX, ID, VA, IL, and AL, where our IMPACT Military KiDS office is located. We also have ministry partners in 3 foreign countries - Dominican Republic, Tanzania, and Malawi.

Don’t miss the blessing; enjoy reaching kids! They will never forget you! They will love you forever, because you are sharing and showing them God’s love in real time.

Over 30 years ago, while serving in our first church, my wife and I led the student ministry. We had only a few to start with, but as the second and third year rolled around, we were bursting at the seams. One young man, Tom, 14 years old, actually said out loud during a service while someone was speaking, "I need Jesus as my Savior!" People around us started clapping. My wife and I immediately took Tom and his brother into a separate space and led him to the Lord. I'll never forget it. Apparently, neither did he. Tom messaged me several days ago, after searching all over social media to find us. We exchanged several messages and will talk next week. What grabbed us was his gratitude for telling him the truth of God's Word and leading him to faith in Jesus. He was genuinely grateful and thoroughly changed! He has remained faithful and led his own family to follow Jesus! That's worth shouting about!

We want to see every church develop a mission strategy for reaching kids outside the church walls, including having an after-school Bible club in every school in America. By God's grace and through partnerships with churches and other organizations, this is more than possible! So let's get in, buckle up, and hang on for the ride of our lives!

A blond boy sits cross-legged on the floor, with his hands folded in prayer under his chin. The words of Romans 10:14 are overlayed over the image: "But how can they call on Him to save them unless they believe in Him? And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him? And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them?"

And until every child hears... let's reach the next generation!

Ron Tant

Founder, President, and CEO

"But how can they call on Him to save them unless they believe in Him? And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him? And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them?" Romans 10:14

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