‘My perspective is, I don’t think I would have become a Christian if lockdown hadn’t happened. I wouldn’t have spent so much time thinking. I wouldn’t have reached out. After Alpha I wouldn’t have made the time to go to church.’
Over the past year of lockdowns I’m sure we have all tried something new. Perhaps you’ve knitted a scarf or learnt some basic French? For Issy, a second year student at the University of Leicester, she also tried something new. She tried Alpha.
During lockdown, Issy had found herself spending a lot of time on TikTok. Amongst the funny videos and TikTok trends, Issy found herself watching lots of Christian TikTok videos. These included bible memes, videos unpacking biblical context and most notably, people sharing their testimonies. Issy had always assumed that anyone who was a Christian had grown up going to church and never strayed from their faith. But as she continued to watch these videos, she quickly realised that this was not the case.
Her curiosity to find out about Jesus for herself began to grow, so she started reading a bible which had been given to her at primary school. She also told a Christian friend from uni about her sparked interest, and they invited her along to the church’s Alpha group.
‘Alpha was amazing and I loved it! I developed a relationship with Jesus through those 10 weeks and at the end of Alpha I became a Christian.’
There are so many parts of Issy’s story which excite me, but one of them is this; although it was new for Issy to try Alpha, it was not new for her to try church. When she was in Year 13 a friend had invited her along to church. She had gone along and enjoyed it, but at the time the only noticeable impact it had on her life was that it gave her a different perspective on what church and Christians were like. Yet years later as she scrolled through TikTok, the videos had a real impact because of her changed perspective.
Issy’s story is a great reminder of the importance of invitation. We can so often say people’s no for them, without having even asked the question. But let’s change this! Who do you know who you could invite to your church or small group? Even if you’ve asked them before, ask them again! You never know what doors your invitation will open.