Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The 40 Day Student Revolution

Yesterday I was blown away. I really try not to to have a “been there-done that” attitude about ministry so I like to be blown away. This time it was by the students.

I visited a leadership small group for our students, known as XL, that meets every Tuesday night. My wife and I have worked with students and youth so we thought we knew what to expect. Well, we were very excited to see about thirty, very motivated, very committed young people and the leader couple that was equally fully engaged, fully committed and completely devoted to their students.

I’ve found that young people will typically respond very well to anyone that consistently invests time in their life. It’s not about curriculum, programs, being cool or even the right music. Young people can spot phony care and concern so only the real thing, the right heart will work.

I was also pretty impressed at the “40 Day Student Revolution” strategy being used that was developed by Operation Light Force, a ministry out of Florida. The students are being challenged over a 40-day period to be revolutionary Christians. The strategy includes random acts of kindness, prayer, fasting and basically reaching out to their fellow students. These are students (both middle and high school) that are being challenged to fast both a food and media element over a 40-day period. Each day has a specific evangelism assignment for them including things like writing notes to a teacher or principle or fellow student. They also are being encouraged to reach out to those that are alone, or buy a lunch for someone that doesn’t have one.

Ultimately, the idea is to get someone to ask, "WHY are you doing this?" This then opens an evangelism opportunity and an occasion to live out what it means to “love your neighbor”.

Barna says that this generation of students is the least likely to be involved in church, and the least likely age group to indicate that faith is a very important part of their life. At the same time, other studies regarding this same generation have shown that most consider themselves to be deeply spiritual, regardless of church attendance. While most may be searching for life purpose, many believe the main purpose of life is enjoyment.

Reaching this next generation of students means also reaching the next generation of leaders. Let’s pray that we stay committed to those that are not only in Jerusalem but also in our Judea’s and Samira’s as well.

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Our small Christian non-profit ministry recently requested and received approval from the IRS to be re-classified as a ‘church’.      ...