Shaping The Spiritual Life Of Students

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

I read this book a number of years ago, but it still holds true as a good tool for discipleship and pastoral care.

The core principle of the book is about walking beside youth in their journey, at their speed. And walking with them in all areas. The author calls this pacing.

Here is an excerpt:

Pacing is the language of love not only for effective parenting but for effective student ministry. Pacing requires me to listen to the heart of an adolescent, seeing beyond words and behaviors. Pacing therefore demands time, the time it takes to go beyond the surface in a conversation or to enter the social turf of a student - a band concert, a dorm room. Pacing is costly. The payoff, however, far exceeds the cost. Choosing to listen or to engage personally in an adolescent's world communicates, "Who you are matters to me. I care about what you think, how you feel and why you make the choices you do." Pacing builds trust. Trust produces relationship. Relationship conceives spiritual life exchanges. Such exchanges are the sacred places where the Holy Spirit reaches through the life of a Christian spiritual caregiver to change forever the life of a student."

The book can feel a little intellectual at points, but the knowledge and skills are worth it.

Pick up a copy at:

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