One of the hardest things about moving was leaving behind the disciple-making movement at Hancock College in Santa Maria. But I do get to go back about once a month to do evangelism with them on campus and teach at their large group gathering. When I was there just a few weeks ago, I taught our first session of Hermeneutics (Bible interpretation). There were about 20 students there at Carol’s house for dinner and our study (as you can see in the picture)!
Until I return and teach the next hermeneutics sessions in a few weeks, the three student leaders will continue to teach the apologetics class that they themselves went through last year. I am thankful that they enjoy having me come back to visit, but I am also thankful that the ministry continues without my local leadership. Praise the Lord - they don’t need me!
We’ve been living on the Central Coast for a year and a half, and what a precious time it has been! In the picture to the left you can see the students who came to our last apologetics class at our home before we move. Each of these students has been such a significant part of our lives here on the Central Coast. Now what? We are moving to Folsom! We will be focusing on the six community colleges in the Sacramento area. Though we will certainly miss ministry here on the Central Coast, we celebrate that:
We leave behind a disciple-making movement at Hancock College in Santa Maria (and Lompoc!) that has three gifted volunteer leaders (local retirees), and a handful of solid student-leaders sharing their faith and making disciples on campus. And several of the student leaders will continue to teach the Bible School classes at the weekly meeting! The Cuesta College ministry continues to thrive, and the apologetics class that we did at our home will continue; one of the students will be hosting and leading it after we leave.
“Do what?” I asked. “The ‘convince-me-that-Christianity-is-not-true’ table!” Jessica replied.
So now they are gonna do it! In this picture you’ll see Davina, Jessica and Leo, our student leaders at Hancock College. We met them just under a year ago doing evangelism on campus, and for the past year they’ve been self-described ‘sponges’ excited to learn everything they can about living out their faith. They have absolutely loved our apologetics class, and their confidence in their faith has turned them into evangelists on campus.
It is so exciting to hear them dreaming about how to engage other students with the Gospel!
Some of our Hancock students organized a beach bonfire worship night a few weeks ago; it was a wonderful evening! I love seeing how the Lord continues to build this community and move us forward in accomplishing our vision of helping others to KNOW Christ, GROW in their faith, and GO make disciples.
Just yesterday I was visiting with a few of our key student leaders (Davina and Leo), and I was sharing with them about how each of them could have such a huge impact on campus for years to come by simply discipling a few incoming students next year. Their excitement at the thought of being so influential for the Gospel in the lives of others reminded me of when I had the same realization so many years ago - the realizing that God could use me!
At the beginning of the fall semester we met Jessica at Hancock College. She was the first student we met at the Hancock College satellite campus in Lompoc, and we started a Bible study with her. Nine months later, and we are celebrating what the Lord has done this year.
Above is a picture of many of our key students at Hancock College. Months ago, Jessica invited a few students to go to Olive Garden for lunch, and it became a weekly event! For the entire semester students have been meeting for lunch every Wednesday at the Olive Garden. Each of these students is loved dearly by Jesus, and He has shown His love to each through each other.
Oh, how precious is the gathering of the saints!
One of our student leaders, Leo, went with me recently to engage students in our spiritual survey on campus at Hancock College (pictured left). We talked with a young man who wasn’t sure what he believes about God, but is “just focusing on school right now.” What a privilege it was to be used by the Lord to help him consider: “If Jesus really did die and rise again, and if he really does offer us eternal, forgiven and fulfilling life…. Do you think it would be worth your time and energy to investigate? If it is true, doesn’t that change…. EVERYTHING?”
Thank you for joining us in equipping Leo to share his faith and make disciples on campus at Hancock College.
Thank you for joining us in inviting students to consider how Jesus "changes everything”.
Oh how I enjoy teaching our informal Bible school! College students ARE asking the most important questions:
We are now doing our hermeneutics class in Arroyo Grande at the York home, and apologetics classes in both Santa Maria and Lompoc at the homes of our volunteer leaders for Hancock College. In addition, a Cuesta College student who went through the apologetics class last semester is teaching the class in Creston at his home church.
Lompoc is a small town on the coast about an hour south of San Luis Obispo. The main Hancock College campus is in Santa Maria, but there is a small satellite campus there in Lompoc. Jim (pictured above at the table) loves Jesus and loves college students… and he has time because he is retired! He goes on campus with me every Wednesday in Lompoc to share the Gospel with students and invite students to study the Bible with us. We now have a Bible study with two students every Wednesday morning on campus!
One of these students is Jessica (pictured above at the table with Jim). Jessica is now learning how to share her faith on campus using the picture survey. Praise the Lord for Jim and Jessica!
Oh how wonderful it is how the Lord works! About a month ago, I was thinking how wonderful it would be to have a student going with me to Hancock College in Santa Maria to do evangelism and disciple-making there.
Then last week I was visiting with Dylan, one of the Cuesta College students I am discipling. As we were finishing our meal together, he casually asked me what I was up to the rest of the week. I told him, “Tomorrow I get to go down to Santa Maria to do evangelism on campus at Hancock College.” He immediately asked, “I’m free tomorrow; can I come?”
Dylan so enjoyed our time on campus that he went back to Hancock with me the following Wednesday and helped another student lead a Bible study on campus - about 6 students met in the cafeteria to study the Gospel of John! He also insisted that we take our picture-spiritual-survey and go mobile to talk with students about Jesus (pictured above).
Dylan now plans to come with me every Wednesday throughout the semester. Praise the Lord for the work He is doing at Hancock College and in the life of Dylan!
There is so much spiritual hunger on campus at Hancock College in Santa Maria! The reason won’t surprise you: a handful of local believers have been praying - even doing prayer walks on campus. Two of these prayer-walkers are Carol and Jim.
A local college pastor connected me to Carol. I was sharing with her about what I do on campus for evangelism and disciple-making, and she readily accepted my invitation to come check it out. She has been coming on campus weekly ever since! (You can see her doing the Soularium spiritual survey in the picture above).
And Carol invited her friend Jim to join us. Jim leads the evangelism and disciple-making ministry at the small satellite campus in Lompoc.
Praise the Lord for the fruit at Hancock:
Cuesta College just started last week! We’ve already had our Cuesta Welcome BBQ and our first large group meeting. It has been a wonderful week full of God-stories!
One of the highlights for me was the first Apologetics class at our home. We hosted these students (pictured above) for our first of nine 2-hour sessions focused on understanding the intellectual reasonableness of the Christian faith.
I am convinced that investing in a few key students will reap great dividends in the future! We are dreaming of sending students as interns all over California with the purpose of equipping the local church to make disciples who make disciples on their nearby community college campus.
Word got out that we are making disciples at Hancock College in Santa Maria, and I got a phone call from Jim (sitting at the table in the picture above). Jim is a local believer and has been praying along with some friends for the students at Hancock College. Jim contacted me and invited me to come show them how to do evangelism and disciple-making there.
A few days later we were at the Hancock Hello event (pictured above), an open house for new students. Many students came by our table and took our spiritual survey, and nine of them expressed interest in meeting up again on campus for Bible study!
We will be going to Hancock College every Wednesday for a few hours to do evangelism and meet with interested students, with the goal of discipling a few into disciple-makers.
I love it when students want to learn how to share their faith on campus! A few weeks ago Molly (pictured above) brought Jared (also pictured above) to our Theology Bible School class at our house. Jared has some disabilities from a brain aneurism he had several years ago, and he wanted to get some evangelism training! I’ll never turn down the opportunity to train students in doing evangelism. So off we went to Hancock College in Santa Maria. During the summer, there are very few students on campus, but we talked to all three of them! What a wonderful time and great conversations. We got to share the Gospel with several students. Pray for Jared to continue growing in His faith. And pray for a growing disciple-making movement at Hancock College!
There are about 45,000 college students in the San Luis Obispo area (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Cuesta College also in San Luis Obispo, and Hancock College in Santa Maria). Well over 800 of these students are involved in CRU Central Coast, and many of these students are longing to grow in their faith. For this reason, we have started an informal Bible School!
We have begun with a Systematic Theology class for Cuesta College students, and we have about a dozen students involved (our first class is pictured above). We meet once a week for four hours for teaching, discussion, and a meal. What a great beginning!
We see such a great need that we are dreaming of doing more classes in the coming months; our hope is to do five different classes: Missions, Apologetics, Theology, Church History, and Hermeneutics (MATCH).
We see this as a significant opportunity to equip students to go deep into their faith so that they can be effective life-long disciple-makers.
We are also dreaming of even a few of these students catching the vision for planting disciple-making movements through the local church on community colleges all over California.
Please pray with us for the Lord to accomplish these things!
I am so thankful for guys like Sebastian. Sebastian has been a faithful part of the Cru student leadership team at Hancock this year. It is students like Sebastian who lay the groundwork for more and more disciple-making on campus. Pray for the Lord to do amazing things at Hancock next year as Sebastian passes on leadership to others.
The Yorks are passionate about bringing the Gospel to the nations - especially the unreached of the world (those who have no access to the Gospel). They are convinced that the greatest impact they can have in reaching the unreached is by multiplying disciples on college campuses and equipping churches to be missional disciple-makers.