LEADING SCHOOL BIBLE CLUBS
BY RANDY RIGGINS
Ten ways to make a difference!
It’s not too late in the schol year to reach other students for Christ.
As I write this article, our nation is involved in the tightest presidential race it has seen in years! Various tactics were applied to appeal to the voters, but possibly the most amazing new strategy was that the candidates tried their hand at comedy on the late night talk shows. The most popular ploy was for both candidates to participate in their own versions of a Top Ten list, poking fun at themselves and their opponent. While I’m not attempting to charm you into voting for me, I am hoping you will at least finish reading my article!
My Top Ten list may not be as funny as the candidates’ but I can promise you a list that is both useful and true.
When it comes to making a difference for Christ on your campus, you may feel like you’re hitting your head against a brick wall. Or, you may be in the midst of a powerful, spiritual breakthrough. No matter which
category you may find yourself in now, the following list includes ten principles you can use.
These principles work, and I’m not just spouting off a bunch of “campaign promises.” If you spend the remainder of your school year focused on these top ten principles, God will make a difference in and
through your life. Why do I sound so confident? Because God’s Word is true, and when we put His principles into practice, we see the evidence of His workings and power all around us. Now, let’s get started …
1. STAY CONNECTED TO THE SAVIOR!
Jesus said, “Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself, it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me … apart from me you can do nothing” (John
15:4-5). Your time in His Word will transform your heart into a heart that resembles the Father, and mold you into the image of His Son.
One example of this truth can be found in Acts 4:13: “When they saw the courage o f Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men
had been with Jesus. ” These “missionaries” stood out in the crowd because of the time they spent with Jesus. You can’t change your campus, but God can through you, if you are spending time with Him.
Keep in mind, meditating upon and memorizing key portions of His Word will help you maneuver through your days on campus. Here are a few key verses that will help prepare you for service: II Timothy 1:7, I John 4:4, I Peter 5:8-9, Ephesians 3:20.
Jeremiah 33:3 says, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” God has some unbelievable plans for you on your campus … and He wants to share them with you.
Keep the communication flowing between you and the Heavenly Father. Pray for your school, your classmates, your teachers, and your principals. Pray alone and in groups. Pray before, during, and after
school. Pray for specific people in your school, realizing that your conversations with God about these people will be just the beginning of how God chooses to use you in their lives.
A few years ago, I watched as several students from my church got serious about praying for a specific friend, one who was into the drug scene and very anti-God. They stepped out on faith and invited him to a
camp they never dreamed he would attend. Because of their faithfulness and obedience, he came to camp, got saved, and is currently taking seminary classes to prepare him for foreign missions.
3. BE A FRIEND.
Romans 12:10 &13 say, “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves … practice hospitality.” Practicing spiritual “hospitality” on campus translates into going
through your school day ready to meet needs.
I am reminded of the testimony of Rachel Scott, one of the Christian martyrs of the Columbine High School massacre. She targeted three groups of people: the handicapped, the students who were new to her
school, and those students who were regarded as “outcasts.” As Rachel walked the halls of her school, she lived out a life resembling our Savior. For you, it may mean tutoring a classmate, listening to the
problems facing a friend, or helping an embarrassed underclassman pick up their spilled meatloaf and carrots off the cafeteria floor.
These actions do not occur accidentally. They will begin to intentionally take shape as you start each day praying, “God, I want to see with your eyes and hear with your ears, so that I am able to recognize the potential distractions of my day as incredible opportunities to show Your love.”
4. LINK UP WITH OTHER CHRISTIANS.
Although it might seem like your campus is a spiritual wasteland, it’s doubtful that you’re the only Christian around. You just have to find ways to meet other believers. Try attending Christian club meetings, or for one night, go to a different youth group in your area to meet other students. Paul reminds us in Romans 15:10, that we were meant to show off His Glory as we live life connected and unified together: “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father o f our Lord Jesus Christ.”
If other believers go to a different church … Big deal! If they aren’t in the “in crowd,” . . . So what! Band together with other believers and make a difference on your campus.
5. REMAIN ACCOUNTABLE TO YOUR CELL GROUP.
Let them know who God has placed on your heart. Ask them to keep you accountable concerning what God is leading you to accomplish as a part of His plan. Proverbs 27:17, reminds us that, “As iron sharpens iron,
so one man sharpens another. ” Allow your cell group to propel you towards excellence in your walk with the Lord.
6. BE REAL
Reality-based programs like CBS’s “Survivor” are some of the most watched and talked about shows on television. In today’s culture, people want (and need) to see, experience, and relate to real people
living authentic lives.
The people in your school need to see Christians who are honest about their faith and convictions, yet willing to let down their guard for others to see real hurts and struggles. We are called to love others as
we love ourselves, but in Romans 12:9, we are reminded that our “love must be sincere.” So let me ask you, are you real?
7. SEIZE THE DAY
You only have a limited time with your current classmates. A day only has twenty-four hours and you will only be at your school for a few short years (well … maybe a few more for some!)
Most of the people that surround you at school will not be in your sphere of influence ten years from now. Don’t take for granted the small talk in the auditorium before the pep rally or the conversations that occur around your cafeteria table each day. Proverbs 27:1 soberly reminds us, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not knowwhat a day may bring forth.” The time is now!
8. INVITE A FRIEND TO YOUR CELL MEETINGS
You might just be surprised at how many of your friends will say “Yes” to your invitation. Helping your friends make the connection to an authentic, exciting, body of believers can become one of the most
eternally rewarding factors you could ever introduce into your friendships.
9. BE READY TO GIVE AN ANSWER TO THE FAITH THAT IS IN YOU
Many people in my high school knew I had a relationship with Jesus Christ. Others only knew me as that “nice guy who was the drum major and president of the French Club.” What about you? Are you “. . .
prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (I Peter 3:15)? If you are, then you are setting the stage for God to do incredible things in the lives of your classmates.
10. STAY FOCUSED ON THE PRIZE
The Apostle Paul proclaimed: “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:13b-14).
It is our love relationship with the Savior that motivates us to take our next step of faith. The prize: A relationship with God, glorifying Him, now and forever! Now that’s a race with a prize worth running after!
Randy Riggins is a seasoned youth pastor at Clearpoint Church in Pasadena, Texas.
THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY THE CELL GROUP JOURNAL, WINTER 2001, PAGES 36, 37. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.