It was early. 7:10 a.m. to be exact. I was sitting there, there being a middle school library. School had not yet begun, but students were starting to walk the halls. As more people rolled in, so did two boxes of donuts and two ladies. The ladies were the First Priority faculty sponsor and campus coach. It was the First Priority morning. Focus week was upon us. This is the week where students ask each other the standard questions: What are you learning in Church? How can I help you in your walk of faith? What is God doing in your life? Who are you inviting to Hook Week to hear the gospel of Jesus?
As the campus coach started the meeting, she asked the question, “We had D-now this past weekend. Many of you were there. What did you learn?” Silence. One 13-year-old boy was volunteered by a few friends so he got up and started talking. Talking about what they ate, when they went skating, how they got in trouble for doorbell ditching later. Laugh, laugh. High fives all around.
A few other students shared. Each a little deeper than the last. Thoughts were good. It was evident that God was moving in the students’ lives. Then silence hit again. The campus coach began winding the meeting down, reminding students of next week and what the student leaders were planning. As she spoke, the first boy walked up behind her and whispered something into her ear. She finished her thought and gave the floor back to him. He looked off to the left, into the distance and began to talk. Shared from his heart about his life. He shared about his home life and the influence his older sister and friends had on him. Of being out late and doing what they did. Drugs. Drinking, Cutting. Girls. Being taken from his home and going to live with his grandpa. Grandpa passing away. Thoughts of suicide. Going into foster care. Did I mention he is now 13 years old? Then, last September, God intervened in his life. He didn’t share the details, but he did share the hope he now has. We saw the brotherhood that laughed with him before surround him with hugs and words as tears streamed down their faces. Did I mention these are 13-year-old boys? Did I mention that this was in the open library as the student body walked by entering school for the day? Do I need to remind you that God is alive and well in the lives of our students? How about that students influence students? That by giving God a place in the school that Jesus will do his great work?
The spiritual lives of our students are broken. Someone needs to help organize the churches in the area so that God can do his great work, much like Ezekiel when God showed him the valley of dry bones. Could God have given them life all on his own? Yes! Did he? No. He asked Ezekiel to be a part. He wants to use his people to bring life to the spiritually dead. Will you be the one in your community?
Until the Hope of Christ in Every Student,
Director of Expansion
First Priority of America