What happens when you release students to lead in your church? According to Jodie, a Student Worker in Bath, breakthrough happens.
Earlier this year, Jodie made the decision to let go of control in her student work and instead, committed to praying to see revival within the students in Bath! She was amazed at how God moved through the students in her church…
“This is the first year we’d let go of control, taken a step back and let other student leaders take ownership and run with it. Incredibly, the amount of students that are a part of our church has grown a lot over the last year! When we first launched in-person services again, I didn’t know half of the students who signed up. They had all been invited by other student leaders who had been released to lead small groups that year. This meant that they were connecting with so many more people than I could ever connect with, so it was so encouraging to see the fruit of the prayers we’d been praying over the last year!
When in-person services started up again, hosted on a friend’s farm, Jodie was filled with anticipation. Realising that the friend hosting would have a hot tub in her garden, Jodie wondered, ‘wouldn’t it be cool if people got baptised at the service, in the hot tub?’. Initially, this had been a fleeting thought, but as time went on, she was convicted by the Holy Spirit that this is something He wanted to see happen, so with no students yet expressing interest in being baptised, Jodie put plans into action.
“I remember thinking, we don't know who, and we don't know what their story is, but I really feel like God is wanting to do something here and we need to extend His invitation to anyone who wants to know Him. So, after sharing the gospel and sharing the meaning of baptism, we extended the invitation to get baptised.
Two girls came to talk to me in bits and both were sure that they wanted to get baptised! So we pulled together some towels and clothes, we got their friends and family members on FaceTime and we baptised them there and then, in a hot tub in a garden, surrounded by their student family. It was a gorgeous moment of the Kingdom coming down!”
Here began the domino effect.
Just one week later, another girl approached Jodie, telling her she also wanted to be baptised, but this time wanted to invite all her friends and family in person so that they could hear the good news of Jesus. Just one month later, she too was baptised in front of her church community, friends and family.
The most recent story belongs to an International Student who was unable to return home for summer. Her friends in the church stepped in by providing accommodation and she moved in with some friends who were committed to doing regular Bible studies with her and chatting freely about faith. In this time, she has encountered Jesus and wants to get baptised surrounded by her church family!
“She texted me simply saying, ‘I've been praying and asking God what next? As I did that I felt Him say I should go all in, be baptised and in that moment, the skies opened up and it poured with rain!’”
These 4 stories are just the beginning. Together, we have been contending for a move of God within students and stories like these are becoming more and more common. Let’s continue to pray and celebrate students coming home, whilst we challenge ourselves to hand over control and release the students around us to share the reason for our hope.