The responses just kept on coming. Message after message of people around the city and the UK who put their dairies down to do something for the free Banquet we threw on Friday night for the people of York. (You can read the story and watch the video here.)
“I can be there straight after my lecture, I’ll text to gather people in the mean time”
“I’m running home to make a pudding, anything else I can do?”
“All my housemates are up for it, we’ll be there.”
“What do you need me to do? I’m yours for the evening.”
“Praying right now, I’ll be there as soon as this seminar finishes!”
“Wish I lived in York! I’m praying, I’ve donated money, I’ll spread the word.”
I don’t think I’ll ever forget the moment when around thirty students dropped what they were doing, put “normal life” on hold, and threw everything they had into creating a party fit for the King.
Looking back, one of the things that still blows me away, is how absolutely all-in our student mates were. There seemed no hesitation in their responses to our plea for help, to create a banquet for one hundred people from scratch in twelve hours. With every phone call, text or Facebook message came a reply that basically said “whatever you need, I will do.”
It has got me thinking about how incredibly powerful and effective students can be, and how available they are for God to call them to the outrageous, the last-minute, the action-packed, the all-in situations. To throw a banquet in a day, my team-mate Pippa and I did not hesitate in contacting our student friends first. If you want to get something done, with energy, passion and creativity, if you want a team that can be all-in, all-day, all-evening, all-weather, all-circumstances, call upon the students.
The fact that around thirty students made the banquet an incredible night of God encounters and massive blessing, giving of themselves, giving money they may or may not have been able to spare, giving of their faith to bring their mates along too, spurs me on to not get complacent in my expectations for my generation.
That Friday proved that students can make incredible impact for Jesus at the drop of a hat. Friday proved that students have been given an amazing life-phase of flexibility, no mortgage or kids to coordinate before they can agree to go all-in. Friday proved that even with faith as small as a mustard seed, mountains can be moved and Friday proved that Jesus meant it when he said that, for this generation of students too.
Students, you can be and are spectacular. My faith has been raised for what we can do on campus, in our uni cities, to see people come to know the King Jesus, who invites anyone who will come to his banquet. Let us set our sights high, let us live in such anticipation and obedience to the nudges of the Holy Spirit that when we get a phone call saying “Can you help throw a banquet in twelves hours like Jesus ”, we’re already out the door, responding in love, fearlessness and with that sense of adventure that feels totally out of our depth but exactly where we’re meant to be.