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Okay, let’s talk about them, parties
No, I don’t mean your 10-year-old birthday party where you had a Princess cake or a Fear Factor Party. I’m talking about college parties.
Depending on where you go to school these may look different. These could range from full-on Project X style parties (let’s hope that’s not the case) to a get together with a few friends and some beers or not some beers.
Whatever the term “party” means to you, that’s what I’m speaking to.
Growing up in a Christian household, with a busy schedule and always being in class with a variety of people to be social or become friends with, the idea of parties never really crossed my mind. I knew it was something people did, but it never really interested me.
See the thing is, I saw parties in a very specific way.
In my mind parties were something people went to where everyone was drinking (and drinking A LOT), making stupid decisions, and had nothing better to do with their time.
Then, I got to college and my perspective changed.
Now, take into account that I am a double major in Dance and Communication studies, involved with Delight and a sorority so… I didn’t have a lot of options to make guy friends in any of those places. They were all just groups of girls. As much as I love girls, I had never been surrounded so predominantly by girls all the time and felt like I needed some guy friends in my life. So, when I was invited to a party, I went for it.
When I got to this party, I remember thinking “Wow. There are so many guys here and everyone is just sitting around and talking. How social of them all!”
While I know the majority of people think of parties as a place to drink and make bad decisions that are permissible, I want to encourage you to see parties as a place to go and hang out and talk with people and maybe show some people Jesus through your actions and words for the first time in their lives!
Go to parties. Be part of this culture, so you can be relatable to the people who need to hear Jesus who are at those parties. You don’t have to partake in everything they are doing or even partake a little. YOU get to decide what you do and don’t do, and HECK you could even be the one that sets the tone and culture for activities that don’t even revolve around drinking either!
I’m here to tell you that the college party experience does not have to be the typical “let’s get drunk and forget what we did the night before” experience. That’s no fun. What IS fun is going to parties, meeting some pretty cool people, having good and authentic conversations, and being able to have even more friends and familiar faces on campus.
Remember: The people at the parties are people just like you. You may be meeting them in a party environment, but that’s not all they do. They do homework. They eat lunch. They have parents! And they usually need a good friend outside of a Thursday or Friday night.
Look at parties as a way to be social and meet people you normally wouldn’t hang out with and to be a light for Jesus in a usually dark place. Build a relationship with them that later down the road could result in a really deep conversation about life or a hard time they are going through. You never know who you are going to meet or whose life you could impact just by talking to them!
Jesus came and had dinner with the sinners and tax collectors and everyone in between (Matthew 9:10-17). We are called to go into those places, be amongst them, and show them Jesus, either through our actions or our words. Don’t be scared of parties, rather jump right in and ask guidance from the Lord to lead you to who you should talk to. You never know what He could use you for!
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