“I think there's a funny thing about college students today. They have specific needs, as mentioned in the book ‘Growing Young,’ but I believe so deeply that their needs aren't any different from humanity in general. They need warm community and authentic, meaningful, mentoring relationships. They need the gospel of Jesus Christ- straight up and not watered down, and they need to be empowered as leaders and disciples. It's not a magic formula or complicated web like we often make it. As I look at that list I think ‘everyone needs those things.’ This generation is just very honest about it and likes to hold people accountable to filling those needs.
I'm convicted on this one thing that was deeply implanted in me since being mentored by Rich Carlson at Union College as I worked with Campus Ministries throughout my college years: people over programs. I believe we need to prioritize programs less and focus on building relevant, meaningful relationships with people that draw them into deeper intimacy with Jesus. I think we need to take a look at our vision and mission statements as churches, universities, academies, and hospitals within the Adventist church and cut the programs that aren't working, reshape and redefine other programs that can be more of a launching platform to these intentional relationships, and prioritize more of our budget and our people for building relationships.”