Welcoming the Student Among us
I sat down with a young woman this week, and I realized something: every stage of life has its unique challenges. For the twenty-something, life is filled with both possibility and pressure. Key questions have to be answered: What do I think about God? Who am I? What should I do with my life? With whom should I spend it?
Jesus loves young adults! He desires to be with them and guide them through this key stage of life. At Bethel it is our desire to be a welcoming community for young adults. A place where they can explore their thoughts about God, build life upon Jesus, and also enter into meaningful relationships with others on the same journey. I am pleased to say that I can see meaningful steps happening all around Bethel to become more and more that enfolding community.
Perhaps you have seen the many new twenty-something faces in the 11:00 service. Recently Bethel’s Young Adult team created care packages for new King’s students and offered a warm invitation to church. I was struck by the questions students had about Bethel: “Does Bethel value the Bible as the Word of God?” and “Is Bethel a church with people of all ages?” stand out to me. Indeed, twenty-somethings are hungry for vibrant Christian community.
It is encouraging to see volunteers transporting students from King’s to Bethel on Sundays and young adults, whether in school or working, joining new small groups. The Young Adult kick-off barbeque had its best attendance ever. Currently we are searching for families who will take in a student away from home for Thanksgiving dinners.
I want to encourage us all to continue to make Bethel a warm and welcoming community, not only for young adults but for everyone else too. All people, whether young or old, deserve to be noticed, listened to, and valued. When we invite the stranger into our hearts and homes, we entertain our Savior. - Pastor Ryan