Like you, I’ll be taking the next few days off and hangin’ with family. So the next post should come on Monday!
But before I go, something to chew on over the break… with another break just over the horizon. It’s this week’s Fridea. Even though it’s Wednesday.
The Fridea? Intentionally prepare students for spiritual success during the Winter Break.
I hope our campus ministries aren’t just about “running the right plays” while students are around and then “planning next semester” when they’re gone. Our students will live several weeks of life away from us; as their main spiritual shepherds, I believe we’re accountable for how they do even in their absence.
I don’t hear this topic discussed all that often, and it’s easier to think about how students are going to use their three summer months well than to ponder the one winter month (or less for those on the Quarter System). But this is a really critical period for students:
- For freshmen, this is their first lengthy time back home. Even those from nearby may have an awkward time adjusting – all the more for those who have been away from home.
- Students are back around their “old lives” – friends, family, locations – that may tempt them to backtrack in their spiritual walk.
- Many students don’t have college ministers at home; even if they do, it’s very hard to connect much during the Winter Break.
- Christmastime can bring all sorts of weirdness / depression all on its own.
- Connections with family and extended family may offer numerous witnessing opportunities.
- Students can easily lose all the spiritual ground they’ve gained in the fall semester during this time.
- On the other hand, this slow month can offer LOTS of time for impact and growth, if that opportunity is taken.
- Students’ spiritual success during Winter Break directly affects your ministry’s entire Spring.
Like those little toy cars, your students may need to be “wound up” with intentional impact so they can putt-putt-putt successfully through the Winter Break. And of course we don’t want them just to coast – we want to prepare them to grow… and come back stronger than ever when they return.