College and Young Adult Ministry: Gather, Grow, Go
August 2, 2017
Three of the College and Young Adult Ministry summer interns reflect on their experiences as they helped to carry out the mission to Gather, Grow, and Go.
Before I did this internship, I had been to Pursuit a total of three times. It had always been a good experience, but this summer, I have been learning that when you have a community to meet with and fight alongside you, a worship service is not just a good experience, but a place where Jesus meets with you and people that you love. I have had the privilege of meeting people I have never met before and reconnecting with people I have not talked to in years, and it has been exciting to find community in East Cobb. One of the most important things that was said at Pursuit this summer was that our friends show us different aspects of God’s character. This is something that I believe but that I also got to see lived out through this summer. I have met people who get so excited to see you, just as God is excited to be with us. I have watched people pray for others just as Jesus intercedes on our behalf. I have seen community built, dance parties take place, and sweet conversations happen, and that is because space has been created for God to come and interact with His kids. Pursuit is important because community is important. Community made this summer beautiful and God knows that. Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them.”
This summer, we met every Tuesday evening for our College and Young Adult Bible study. We began in Acts chapter 1 and went all the way through chapter 6. Typically, we would read scripture together, discuss initial thoughts, then break into groups of 3 to answer questions about the scripture we covered. We would then meet back together as a group and discuss those questions. This allowed for effective discussion and depth with the scripture we covered each week. Our community definitely found growth by discussing Acts, as we learned how the initial church grew so well. Students were happy to share their thoughts on their interpretation of scripture and how it could apply to their lives. I am truly thankful for the time we spent in Bible study this summer because it challenged me to learn and get things out of scripture that I would not have if I was reading all on my own. Having experience leading Bible studies also helped me to grow in a way I never have before. I was forced to listen to the different perspectives and guide conversation in order to follow the discussion guide, which definitely took more work than simple participation. Bible study also helped develop great friendships with the students because we all grew together and learned more about each other every week. I would highly recommend this summer Bible study to any students here for the summer because it will certainly be a catalyst to your spiritual growth.
Community was vibrant throughout College and Young Adult Ministry this summer at Mt. Bethel. To encourage and lead students, there were opportunities to serve and put into practice what was learned about the first church in Acts. Several times the CYA ministry visited the Garden, a homeless shelter/ministry for women, and lead a worship service for the ladies who live there. It was a true embodiment of two different worldviews coming together to praise the one true Lord. Additionally, instead of holding the normal Thursday night worship, CYA took a trip to the Atlanta Dream Center to serve dinner to those without in downtown Atlanta. This experience was powerful, for Jesus was brought to an area that may not see Him every day. Overall, there was an outflow of love that came from what we learned, and it is the hope and prayer of the staff and interns that this outflow carries into the school year.