This is a guest blog by Pippa Winterburn who is the Student Linkup Developer for Fusion
It’s not that often you can look back a year and realise that everything has changed since then. That will be where your school leavers will be at a year from now.
Everything will change. Between now and then, dinner time, where they live, who they live with, their friends, their eating habits, their passions will be different. They will be different. The question is, when everything turns on its head, where will they be with God?
Those school leavers’ faith will change. Whatever happens, God will not look the same to them this time next year as he does now. Does that inspire excitement or fear in you?
It sounds amazing to me. Our faith isn’t static, it’s alive, it’s affected, inspired, challenged, refined by what’s going on in our lives. Going to uni is a massive opportunity for all of these, and that’s a good thing. This year, the best thing you can do for your young people is to help them stand on their own two feet. It’s time for them to take a step into independence, responsibility and intentional pursuit of God. Borrowed faith and apathetic attendance won’t wash when the world turns upside down. However, confident reliance on God, an understanding of his endlessness and a hope for more to come will set them up for an exciting shift into maturity.
So what can we do, as youth workers who want to see our young people’s faith change for the better? Prepare them! 73% of Christian students don’t connect with church at uni. That’s a shocking statistic. We send missionaries into an astonishing mission field every year with very little preparation and then we’re surprised when they fall away. It is essential that we create a space for them to look ahead, encourage them to decide what they will pursue once there, and then help them connect to churches once they arrive. For more info on how to do those things, check out studentlinkup.org.
Everything will change, and I’m praying that for your young people that will include their faith. Let’s pray for bigger hope, bigger ownership and bigger expectations for all that God has planned. Let’s work now to see those young people ready to step into that reality and fly!
You can also check out the new ‘University Preparation Page’ here on Youth Work Resource!