Emily is a second-year student at Lancaster University. I spoke to her recently about how she’s finding living with her family again, and she had an exciting story to share...
“My uni recently moved classes online, so I came back home to live with my family. A few days before I moved back, I was reflecting on my family culture and how we never seem to pray or talk about the Bible together. I went home feeling really challenged to encourage a change in this area. I felt that the disruption in our routines as we practised social distancing made for the perfect opportunity to start something new.
When I first brought it up, my family were enthusiastic about the idea of starting an evening Bible study together, but when it came to actually doing it they made a lot of excuses about doing other things, and it was really difficult to actually get everyone together and focused. However, once we opened our Bibles and began reading the book of James using some notes online to guide our discussion, it was fantastic! We finished off by praying together, which felt like a huge breakthrough. I’ve now been at home for two weeks and we’ve read Scripture and prayed together nearly every day! I’ve seen my younger siblings engage more and have more input, my dad’s asked for more prayer time, and we’ve had conversations around the dinner table about the Bible! It’s so amazing to see God becoming a part of their day to day lives, rather than just on Sundays. We have just finished reading James and are moving on to Philippians - I can’t wait to see what God has in store for my family!”
New seasons call for new rhythms. It’s time to decide what you’re going to do with all this time and space you’ve found yourself with. You get to choose what to invest in this season, so what seeds are you going to sow? Emily’s boldness and courage has already led to breakthrough - seeing her family draw closer to Jesus and invite him deeper into their daily lives.
For some of you, praying with your family or housemates is normal, so enjoy the privilege of a few weeks or months to dig deeper together and find creative ways to reach others who don’t yet know Jesus. For others, it will take more courage and feel risky, but I encourage you to give it a go. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by. Grasp it with both hands and make the most of it.
On the phone to Emily the day before she went home she told me that praying together was something that her family “just don’t do”. How much can change in a fortnight when we choose to step out in faith and our prayers are answered?