“Today changed my way of thinking…”

Lately, I’ve been doing some shows around the Indianapolis area with our outreach band called Abilene.  It’s the same band we took to Australia last year, and we’re working to get some momentum locally with some outreach concerts. Just a couple weeks ago, we did a concert outreach in partnership with an organization called The Landing. It’s a teen recovery ministry for students age 13-19 who struggle with depression, anxiety, addiction, self-harm, suicidal tendencies, bullying, family problems or other issues. The Landing creates a safe place for the students to be honest about their issues where they can be loved and counseled by people with a Christ-centered perspective.

So, we played for them and I shared my story, and shared about how they can come to know and trust Christ. Afterward, they are given comment cards so they can let us know if they made a spiritual decision, and they can also let us know what they think about what we shared. Of the 50 students that were there, seven of them indicated recommitting their lives to Christ. Three of them indicated making decisions to follow Christ, including a girl (whose name is withheld for privacy) who wrote us this note:

“My depression takes control of my life to where I can’t get out of bed or do normal things… and today changed my way of thinking and letting God in my life more.”

Twelve other students indicated that they were not ready to make a decision (as shown in the photo above). Here are some of the reasons they gave:

“I think too much for it.”
“I am agnostic.”
“I’m gay.”
“I’m unsure.”
“I have faith in other beliefs.”
“I’m not 100% sure I believe.”

As excited as we are about students who make decisions to follow Christ, it is just as important that God lets us speak into the lives of the ones who aren’t sure. We had some good conversations after the show, and I was amazed at what a great job the Landing had done to create a place where they felt safe enough to be open and honest about their struggles. The Landing’s staff will follow up with the students to help them take whatever steps are next in their spiritual journeys. That’s one major reason we like working with them – they take an intentional, long-term approach to ministering to the students, and we’ll definitely be working with them again in the future!

Wherever the students are in the process of discovering Christ, I’m grateful that we are able to come in and be a small part of how God reaches out to them. Thanks for the part you play in keeping us out there where we can see God working in people’s lives!

Please pray…
…for the students at the Landing – the ones who made decisions, and the ones who weren’t ready. Wherever they are, we’re praying the Lord continues to meet them. And, pray for some upcoming shows we’re planning in partnership with Cru’s ministry to high school students!