Last time Kyla shared an amazing story about how God is using her on-going conversations with her friends and the Perspective Cards to open up spiritual conversations. Today we asked Kyla to give us some tips and best practices for engaging friends and classmates as well as some of her thoughts on how what she is learning will apply after university.
P2C Blog: As God has been using you in the lives of your friends and classmates to help them discover Jesus, what has been the most challenging?
Kyla: The most challenging part of sharing my faith on campus has been my expectations.
With evangelism I know that we are to take the initiative in the power of the Holy Spirit and trust the results to God, but sometimes it’s incredibly difficult to see friends and classmates struggling and/or moving away from God–despite what I had earlier perceived as progress!
Sometimes it can be discouraging, but looking at how far God has brought each person and knowing that He is actively pursuing them gives me great joy. It’s incredible I get to be a part of it.
P2C Blog: Practically speaking, when you think about these friends in your life, do you keep a journal or notes on where they are in their journey? Do you specifically plan what and when to talk to them? Any tips that you could share?
Kyla: Something I’ve been taught about this year is the “Five Thresholds to Becoming a Christian”. I’ve tried to apply this to helping my friends discover truth. I think that knowing what their next step could be helps me to know what my next step is.
While having five categories means some simplifications, I really value having a grid to consider where on the journey my friends may be and considering what some helpful things are that I can do to journey forward with them. Is my friend ‘needing to grow in trust’ or ‘just curious’ or ‘open to change’ or ‘seeking God’ or ‘ready to make a decision’?
When I talk with each of my friends, I try to be an active listener, whether I initiate a topic or conversation, or I am simply there as an outlet for whatever they’re struggling with. As I listen I am able to understand and process what they’re going through. I try to discern if I am to either engage them in spiritual conversation at that moment or make a note to follow up with them at a later more appropriate time.
By being aware of what they’re going through, I find that I’m increasingly more aware of the resources that are provided to me. In looking to having ongoing, meaningful conversations, I find that I am looking for answers and wisdom myself, which means that I am more attentive and intentional with every sermon or presentation I hear because I‘m learning for myself and others.
P2C Blog: How do you think what you are learning and experiencing in sharing your life and faith on campus will translate into your life post graduation?
Kyla: It’s been interesting to think about how my time on campus will influence my life “in the real world”. I know something that’s had such a radical impact on my life can’t just be left behind once I’m finished university. I’ve really been thinking and praying on what my future will look like.
Having spent time talking with fellow students, it seems more and more attainable to be able to help co-workers discover Christ in the workplace, though I’m not naïve to think that it won’t come with its own unique struggles. I look forward to continuing my activity in a church, helping people through all stages of their faith journey and walking alongside people through life.
I also recognize that I have been blessed by the amount of evangelism training I have and continue to receive. I realize this exposure is somewhat unique. Knowing this, I’ve really been challenged to share what I know. I want to help others grow to a point where they’re able to actively help others discover Jesus and inspire other believers.
I think that these realities will continue, no matter what stage of life I’m in. I want to encourage Christians to be living life as though each step is a step on the missions field.
P2C Blog: Kyla, how can our readers pray for you?
Kyla: I would really appreciate prayers for continued boldness, wisdom, and perseverance.
As each conversation is unique, I often worry that I am unprepared or might misspeak–so having a boldness to not avoid these conversations is huge.
I also know that it’s not what I say but rather the work of the Spirit that is making a difference in these conversations, so wisdom to be led by the Spirit and guided in speech is incredibly important.
Finally, life is hectic. There’s always something going on, whether with school or ministry opportunities, so having the perseverance and determination to still be having the difficult conversations and dedicating time to journey with people means a lot. I think this is something that every student can relate to–finding that time balance and trusting that God has everything under control.
P2C Blog: Well, Kyla this has been such an incredible opportunity to get to know you and learn from your experiences helping others journey toward Jesus in your faculty and on campus. For one, I am incredibly thankful that God has placed you at UofS for such a time as this and that because of Jesus’ light in you, the Engineering Department isn’t quite so dark.
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