This post is by Syler Thomas.
A number of years back, the Christian media group Bluefish TV made a brilliant satirical video pointing out some Christians’ tendency to disengage from “the real world” and create the perfect Christian bubble. You can watch it here:
In chapter six of Game Plan (a new “college prep” book co-written by Nic Gibson), I talk about the struggle of engaging with the world without being tarnished by it. This can be a challenge for today’s college freshmen, as they’re often faced with a decision between Christian fellowship that’s “safe” but keeps them in the “salt shaker,” or engaging with the world which leads them into temptation they’re not strong enough to handle.
Thankfully, the move towards living “missionally” is on the rise, and Christian fellowship groups on college campuses are finding more and more creative ways to engage with outsiders without alienating them. For instance, the InterVarsity group at my alma mater recently held an event where they set up a board in the student center with the question “If Jesus came to DePaul, what would he do first?” They invited everyone to write their answer on a post-it note and attach it to the board. The responses were all over the place: one said “Play racquetball.” Another said “Would preach about love, respect, and empathy.” In this way, they were able to start a dialogue with the student body, and communicated that they’re ready to listen as much as they’re ready to talk.
Do you have any thoughts on this? How do we encourage young people in particular to live in this tension, to be fully committed to holiness as the body of Christ, but always reaching out and building relationships with those far from God?