Mike Cope's blog

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

There's a time to relax and a time to cram. (Been in Eccl. 3 too much this past week.) And it's a time to cram. I speak three times this weekend at Tulsa: 2:00 and 7:00 on Friday and 10:00 on Saturday. I was assigned all three topics. The most unusual one is "College Students Are People Too." What's that mean? Got any helpful hints? Should I assume I'm talking to college students or those who minister to college students? I'm just now putting the "final touches" on that message. (Translation: I'm thinking about it for the first time today.) Next weekend (April 1-3) is "Stream in the Desert." This year we're using my theme from the Gospel of John, "More Than Thunder." > Almost a year ago I told Ken I'd like him to write a song with that theme, and I just heard it for the first time. Very nice. (Of course, I think anything Cole sings is great!) I would appreciate your prayers as I prepare for these events.


  • Mike,
    I have just a couple thoughts about college students. Being away from family for the first time brings freedom, but it also leaves a vacuum. For the first time there are no parents looking over your shoulder, questioning your choices. You can be whomever you choose to be. The problem is most college kids aren't sure who that is yet, so they try on different personas looking for one that fits. I know I did, and by the grace of God I survived some terrible choices made while experimenting with my sense of self.

    Now for the vacuum. You have no family (on site), and we all want desparately to belong, especially at that age. Sometimes we choose to belong to the first group that accepts us. Sometimes we compromise our choices and our behavior in order to belong.
    People who are going through this kind of "stuff" can be difficult to minister to. I know I was. It takes an enormous amount of patience to weather the mercurial storms of a young persons personality as they learn, through trial and error, who they are.

    Ok, rambling now. Hope that helps in some way. And, I would think you'll be talking to both, college students AND those who minister to them. But I know you'll be great, because you'll be REAL, and you can't hope to hold the attention of a college student without authenticity. They seem to have X-ray vision and can see right through you.


    By Blogger Lisa McD in FL, at 3/22/2005 05:31:00 AM  

  • I was just going to offer that I've often referred to ages 18-22 as "the stupid years." Lisa said it much better.

    By Blogger Cindy, at 3/22/2005 05:57:00 AM  

  • Well I have nothing insightful to say, just a whine that I can't be at either of the places! I do have friends who will be in Tulsa, though. I'll be over in Kansas City at an LTC convention.

    I do think Lisa made some great points, though.

    By Blogger Karen, at 3/22/2005 06:02:00 AM  

  • Well, Mike...you could take a real, live college student to Tulsa with you...
    People love object lessons.

    By Blogger Steve Jr., at 3/22/2005 06:19:00 AM  

  • See you in Tulsa, Mike! Looking forward to your keynote on Friday night.


    By Blogger Jeff Slater, at 3/22/2005 06:56:00 AM  

  • I grew up in a college town. Moved away and then returned as student. Here are my very subjective observations on the college people issue.

    People who live in college towns often dismiss the needs of college students because they are "here for only a short time". Activities are planned, campus ministries are started as a way to give them something to be involved in but very little effort is made to incorporate them into the life of the church.

    I know the arguments:

    They go home on weekends, breaks and summers. Doesn't every church have folks who travel a lot. Don't we try to engage them in ministry?

    They are only here for a few years and then they go off and start careers. Our world has become much more transient. I know the church we attended in Birmingham would be thrilled if we had new members for 4 years before they were transferred to their next job.

    College churches give a great deal to students. I valued my time in a college church and look back on it with fond memories. I was actively involved because I was a crossbreed between a resident and a student. I wonder what would be different if instead of the relationship being based on the church giving and the students receiving, the relationship was on the students joining in ministry with the local church.

    Just my 2 cents.

    By Blogger Steve Duer, at 3/22/2005 06:57:00 AM  

  • I get the impression that you will be talking to adults regarding the importance of campus ministry. It seems that campus ministry in most churches is the step-child that gets left out of most things. I see this class as an opportunity to open peoples' eyes to the great potential found in campus ministry.

    By Blogger Gilbert, at 3/22/2005 06:58:00 AM  

  • As a current college student, sometimes I tend to feel trapped in this college world, and I have trouble getting into the "real world" outside the walls of the science building most of my classes are in. When I first started going to a class at church, I tried going to an adult class cuz I was always around college students, I wanted some variety. But I found that, since I only saw these people once a week, I couldn't make a lasting, meaningful connection with them. So that leaves me feeling like the only people I could manage to connect with even at church are the people I then go to school with, with the occasional professor. That's been my frustration with the role of college student, is how to connect to people who aren't.
    Just more food for thought. Hope this weekend goes well!

    By Blogger Tara, at 3/22/2005 11:08:00 AM  

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    By Blogger Tara, at 3/22/2005 11:08:00 AM  

  • Mike, as a high school teacher, I have known a LOT of young men and women who were about to enter their college years. We have a tendency to think about them in certain ways...fish out of water...testing their freedom...learning who they are. But I think the chief mistake we make when we think about college students is that we think of them as KIDS. By the way, that's a mistake we make when dealing with high schoolers as well, even though it's much closer to the truth with them.

    I'm simply saying this: college students deserve to be listened to. They are often the ones who have ideas we never would have dreamed of and they are often far more mature than we give them credit for. And if you want to hear from someone who is steeped in post-modern culture, where else would you go but (as Time magazine dubbed them) a TWIXTER?

    By Blogger Thurman8er, at 3/22/2005 11:34:00 AM  

  • I am looking forward to hearing what you have to say about this topic and see you as someone with good insight having preached for two churches that work closely with universities. It seems sometimes the older/wiser always trumps the younger/naive and I hope you will bring out the many things you have learned from college students.
    Thank you for agreeing to come and your study. I am praying.

    Jill Davis

    By Blogger B / J Davis, at 3/22/2005 01:42:00 PM  

  • Tara and Thurman8er's comments remind me of the awkward time in my life when I was a new college graduate, but husband still had 3 years left (changed his major). We were in a kind of limbo land in our congregation; the college students didn't see us as part of them because we were married, yet the adults didn't consider us to be part of their crowd, either. It was a lonely few years. We remained in that in-between state for the first 5 years of our marriage, until we had our first child.

    I don't understand why it was that way.

    By Blogger Karen, at 3/22/2005 01:45:00 PM  

  • What time are you going to talk about the college students?

    By Blogger Crazy Carl, at 3/22/2005 03:34:00 PM  

  • Mike,

    Most "people" I know keep this schedule:

    9:30 - Wake up for 9:30 class.
    9:45 - Arrive at said class.
    11:00 - See all my friends
    11:30 - Parents pay for lunch
    1:00 - Take quick nap. Sleep through 1:30 class.
    3:00 - Cajaun Cones.
    3:45 - Watch OC Season 1 DVD.
    5:00 - IM/Madden'05/download some music.
    5:45 - Parents pay for dinner.
    6:45 - Get ready for 7:30 intramural game.
    7:10 - Arrive early for intramural game.
    9:00 - Sonic/Chicken E Run
    9:30 - Watch TV
    10:30 - Start Studying
    12:00 - Quick Run to SmallMart (old Walmart now open 24hrs)
    12:30 - Resumme studying
    2:30 - Go to sleep while watching Sports Center

    No. College Students are not people. They are "super people" They serve more, sleep less. They work hard and play harder. They take risks and even play Risk. They are more passionate about Jesus and less concerned with comfort. College students ... simply put: Amazing!

    By Blogger Joel Quile, at 3/24/2005 10:37:00 PM  

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    By Blogger Protegen, at 2/21/2006 07:53:00 AM  

  • Mike I will like to recommend MuscleRelax™, a natural relaxtion cream that helps you "Sleep like a Baby." For those in college, this natural Magnesium cream helps takes the tension of studying away. And it has no side effects. Visit:
    Try it today see for yourself the effects of this simple healing natural cream. I am sure you will enjoy it.

    By Blogger Protegen, at 2/21/2006 07:55:00 AM  

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