I was having a conversation with a student before Coffeehouse about why he likes to come every week. He began to tell me how he likes to hang out with his friends and it’s good for him, because he is kind of religious but not really religious. I asked what he meant by that. He went on to explain how he wears a cross necklace and believes in God, but he doesn’t want it to take over his life. He still wants to do what he wants and not have to try to convert everybody. I gently pressed further, “What are you scared to give up? What do you think would change?”
That’s true. When you decide to follow Jesus and be all in, it changes everything.
We have a lot of students that show up each week who hold this opinion: I go to church, because it’s a good, religious thing to do. It makes me feel good about myself. But I don’t want to be super religious, I just want to live my life the way I want.
I don’t consider myself a “super religious” person, but I do have a relationship with Christ. He is my everything and it affects all that I say and do. There is a difference, because “super religious” carries this connotation of rule following, Bible bashing, in your face “I’m better than you” spirituality. On the other hand, a relationship with Christ gives the impression that it is real, personal, growing, changing and is two-sided. It’s all about how we view faith. Is it simply a set of rules to follow to get into heaven? Or is it about becoming more like Christ and sharing that with others?
Coffeehouse is a place where students can have fun and find community, and its also a place to hear about Jesus each week. As leaders, we have the chance to demonstrate what it means to be in relationship with Christ week in and week out to our students. This is reflected in the way we talk, the way we respond and the way we care. The goal is not to make a bunch of super religious teenagers, but to teach and show them what it means to live in relationship with God. My hope and prayer is that students will see that completely giving their life to Christ is worth it.