Life in the AD (After Degree)
One of the things I have always loved about our church is that so many people come in for a season and are sent out to impact the world . For over half of the year, 35,000 young adults rub elbows on a campus a little larger than a square mile. Like an airport, its inhabitants are heading to their own destinations. Yet here we are, spending several years in our own terminal and now we are boarding our flight into the “real world”. We see people grow in their faith, share the Gospel with others, and love people well.
But what happens after college? Where will I live? What will my job be? With whom will I surround myself?
These are all questions I asked myself as my time at the University of Georgia was winding down. Sometimes it seems there isn’t much decision-making remaining for yourself. You fall into a job and…well, you just take it! I’m not here to make you second-guess the job you already took. If you took one, then congratulations on securing your first position after college! But, let’s figure out how to set you up for success when you get there.
First, do you know people where you are going who love Jesus and want other people to know His love?
If yes, then go ahead and reach out to them. They will be a great resource! Ask them if they know of a good Gospel-centered church in the area and a community group around your stage of life. You don’t need to church hop every weekend. Find your fit, set your stance, plant your feet, and dig your cleats in. It’s game time.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mean to stick around a place that isn’t preaching the Gospel, but doing some research will help in the process. Go ahead and reach out to the churches and tell them you’re moving there and looking to get connected with a gospel community. They want to help you follow Jesus and love people well so let them do that. You'll want help in the process.
Life after college is…an adventure. You may be worried about losing your Christian community, but instead of worrying, think of this next stage as an opportunity to dive and conquer and share The Gospel with even more people. Set yourself up with people who point you to Jesus, preach the Gospel to you, point out evidences of God’s grace in your life and around you, and ask you the tough questions. Press into things and have conversations with people beyond the limits of school and work. School and work will inevitably be a topic of conversation, but don’t stop there.
Get to know your new friends, for they will become your family. Spend time with them. Listen. Ask questions. Eat with them—you may want to venture outside your college staple Ramen, Pop-Tarts, and Yoo-hoo.
So, how do you set yourself up to grow in your faith as you take your next step in adulting? Put yourself out there to intentionally get to know fellow Christians. Commit to membership in a Gospel-centered, missional church. Participate in a regular worship gathering (with a consistent group of believers). Engage in regular spiritual conversations consulting the Bible as the ultimate truth, and look to share the Gospel with those who God has brought into your life.
Let’s look to create rhythms in our lives that set us up to reflect on God’s Holiness, our sinfulness, and God’s incredible love shown to us in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever, Amen.”
-- Ephesians 3:20-21