Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Honest thoughts and self-observations from recruiting

1. When you ask a freshman if they are interested in something, you have to learn how to properly interpret his response. Here is some sample dialogue:

Me: Hey, are you interested in a Christian Leadership Training course to help you grow as a Christian?

What he says: Yeah! That sounds amazing! Can I have a few of your fliers to pass out to some of my friends that I also think might be interested?

What he means: No.

2. Sometimes it is really hard for me to respond when people tell me they will go to something but then don't. I think the reason is that I am really excited about the things we're doing, and so it is easy for me to assume that other people are to. It is hard for me to conceive of a Christian not being excited about growth, leadership, etc. Also, although I am not surprised at non-Christians being insincere or outright lying, it is harder for me when professing Christians do. I want to say, "Dude, I don't care if you are involved with the Navs! I just want you to grow! I want you to be changed by God! I want you to reach the people around you! You can do that in other groups or if you don't want to, that is fine too! But you got my hopes up, and this is my job and the disappointments in it hurt me!"

3. Sometimes there is bitterness (and perhaps by sometimes, I mean, generally, but I repent of it and take it to Jesus) when I am rejected. When I invite a guy to something and he flakes. I want to say to him "You will regret this one day!" Then I imagination some ridiculous scenario where this student looks back his senior year and realizes he has wasted it and he mourns and comes to me and says, "Steven if only I had joined the Navs during that first week when you asked me! My life would be different! O how I regret the callousness with which I treated you, so willfully neglecting the brilliant spiritual insights which I treated as nothing more than chaff." And then I will gently forgive him, with beautiful compassion.

Yes, that scene is completely ridiculous, since in my heart there is a secret desire for this individual, this human being, this person made by God, to have a terrible four years unless he is in MY ministry! Why not just walk around campus with a sandwich board proclaiming "Salvation is found nowhere else but in the ministry of Steven Crawford."

4. Ah pride. Pride is an ugly, ugly thing when displayed like this? Perhaps I am the only minister of the gospel ever to struggle with such things. But recruitment is a wonderful time for my pride to be exposed, so that I can crucify it and repent of it! God doesn't need me. But he wants me. I have a plan which I have sought the Lord on, and taken before him and prayed over, and which I will work towards and labor in, and which I hope God blesses to the extent he desires. But shouldn't I allow a person to be a person, and love them? Shouldn't I desire that a student who doesn't come into my ministry to still grow ferociously? Yes.

5. But nonetheless, I do wish that freshmen were honest. I wish that if a student looks at me and tells me something, he would mean it.

6. Recruitment is hard. But it is necessary.


Blogger Alexandre Costa said...

I feel you Steven. I definitely didn't enjoy flakiness when working with college students. I thought I wouldn't have to deal with that anymore as I started working with adults, but sadly they're just as bad. It is a pain.

9:38 PM

Blogger valbuss said...

Just come to SDSU. You ask. They say "no". And yes they mean "no". Then when someone DOES say "yes" they look at you weird as you dance around like a crazy person. But 1st week of recruitment is beginning to be my favorite because at least they're still polite when they say "no."

6:01 PM


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