Thursday, September 24, 2015

Tom, Dick and Harry and Millennial Gap

I was talking to a twenty-something who was planning to rent a two-bedroom townhouse with another friend. I warned the young adult to not make her new place too comfortable or she will have every “Tom, Dick and Harry” using the townhouse as a place to crash.
My friend looked me in the eye and said, “Who are Tom, Dick and Harry?”

That’s when I knew we were dealing with a generational gap. She had never heard the phrase before. I explained it was just a general saying for multiple unspecified people. I also recognized that the younger generation has a unique set of mental filters like I do when some unknown millennial phrase goes flying over my head. When that happens I become more aware of the white hairs (or lack) still on top of my head.

It's difficult to read much these days without some reference to the millennial generation and their dilemma with spiritual matters. It seems like every article is trying to determine what makes that age group tick, and what would make church attendance more agreeable to that generation. Many churches go in the direction of “make it lite” and “make it fun” and thinking the right decor and technology make attendance more palatable.

I had a glimmer of hope when I recently read an article about millennials which indicated the group was actually more interested in bible study, answers to matters of life and death, than any previous generation. Maybe, the old fashioned approach needs to be reconsidered. Old phrases like “Tom, Dick and Harry” still work and communicate a principle. Scripture still works and communicates truth.

Here is my pledge from Psalm 71:18 _ So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to another generation, your power to all those to come.

Robert Parlante
September 2015

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