In our twenties and thirties, we learn that life is actually quite complicated and, potentially, disappointing. We begin to realize that our families, our schooling, our relationships and even our faith, while being great sources of joy and meaning, can also be sources of angst and upset. How do we navigate the gray areas in these aspects of our lives? How do we approach them with appropriate expectations so that we aren’t always feeling disappointed? And, as Christians, who are now adults, how do we ground ourselves?
This summer we’ll gather together to talk and wonder (and maybe even agree) about how to do the Christian life well in our twenties and thirties and beyond. We’ll hear from each other, from a few authors and, hopefully, the Holy Spirit.
On some of these matters, some of us have wisdom to share because we’ve been there. Done that. Messed it up. And are now willing to talk about it.
Some of us might never face any of these challenges or ask any of these questions because we’re weirdly robotic or have perfect families or are better at life than everyone else.
Regardless, we think these questions and topics will make for great conversation and will help us to grow as individuals and draw closer to God and as a community.
Relationships: The fear of! The angst! The anticipation!
At this stage in the game, many of us desire relationships of the romantic sort. Some of us are in them. Some of us are not. Some of us never want them. For all of us, they’re worth talking about. Does God have a plan for this aspect of our lives too? Is there a Christian way to date? Is there a Christian way to be single? And why are these things so hard?
Calling/Vocation: God’s Fuzzy Blueprints for Your Life
You have or are about to have (or will in six years time have) this degree. Now what? We’re told that God has a plan for us. Each of us. How do we know what it is? How do we know if what we’re doing is the right thing to be doing? What if things change? What if we’re so sure that we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing but we don’t get that job…or that job won’t pay the rent…or people aren’t supportive. What then? Discerning God’s call on your life isn’t easy. Let’s talk about it.
Faith: That One Little Time You had a Crisis And Your Mom Got Scared
For a lot of twenty somethings, the pat answers they learned in Sunday school don’t hold water in the way they once did. There’s a realization that faith, along with everything else, is complicated and that not all questions have easy answers. A big part of sorting out your faith, at this point in life, is deciding which questions you need to be able to answer concretely and which ones are maybe best answered with other questions.
Family: When Our Family of Origin Becomes Alien
At some point in our twenties and beyond, many of us wonder how we came from the family that we did. Along the educational road, worldviews are shaped, tastes in all kinds of things change, and new experiences form our understanding of everything. And then we go home. And so much is the same. But you’re not. And this (no surprise here) causes tension. And so, how do we love and be a part of our family at this stage? God tells us to honor our parents. What does that even mean and how do you do that when you feel like you’re in such different places?
Church: You’re not just a consumer anymore.
What does it look like to be involved in church as an adult? How do we find a church and plug in? For those of us who sometimes feel let down by the church, how do we have appropriate expectations? In particular, what does this look like for a busy grad student who is also involved in an amazing (am I right?) faith community on campus?
Money: What to Do With What You’ve Got
A lot of folks start making real money for the first time in their twenties (or thirties). What does God call us to with regard to our money? How are we to steward it? And what habits should would we be cultivating now so that we are set up to handle money well when we start making it? How should money factor into decisions about jobs?
Time: Using the Time of Our Lives
We have more of it than we think. What should we be doing with it? What shouldn’t we be? What are the spiritual rhythms and practices we should be cultivating? How do we know that we’re not wasting our time?