While at Jubilee Conference a couple of weeks ago, I tweeted a timely note, right as I sat in David Kinnaman’s session that would have applied to my Psychology major back in school:
This week, I plan to blog on this very theme – what I wish I’d learned, heard, or been exposed to within college ministry in my own collegiate years. As I said in the tweet, I was exposed to some spectacular discipleship as an Aggie, and it dramatically impacted my life and set me on a ministry adventure. But like any campus ministries, those I was involved with (both at my church and on campus) had their strengths and weaknesses.
Where your major meets your faith
Today, I re-broach a subject that I mention here every once in awhile. It’s a ministry “gap” not just in collegiate work, but in the church at large – where connecting vocation with faith still can’t be considered a prevalent discussion among American Christians.
But if that discussion should take place anywhere en masse, it’s at campuses, where the opportunity abounds not only to discover one’s calling but to connect it from the outset with one’s Christianity. Yet plenty of times, the closest college ministers may get is exhortation to be a great student (if that subject gets coverage). Otherwise the focus is often all the ministry and dating and evangelism and spiritual growth that can happen outside the classroom hours.
It’s a bummer when we relegate 15 hours a week to agnosto-praxy (I made that word up just now), but of course many of our churches treat the workplace’s 40 hours similarly. We’re working for (ministry on) the weekend.
I guess it’s easy enough to talk about building relationships and sharing our faith in class (and at work); we can focus on staying ethical, too. And those are great things. But don’t we want to offer students more vision for their major (and ultimately their profession)? Excellence in their work, to the glory of God? A recognition of ways their work enhances the common good? Some sense that filling the earth and subduing it might include the very major that students are toiling through?
So that’s something I wish I’d heard during college. Stay tuned for more. [Here’s the series.]
What do you wish you’d heard from college ministry?