By now, I’m sure you have heard about the “outpouring” at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. Articles, personal stories, and plenty of opinions have filled my social feeds for the better part of the last two weeks. I have quite a few friends who have hopped in a car and driven there to see it for themselves.
I understand some initial cynicism with the performative sideshow that everything in our culture seems to turn into nowadays, but something about this feels altogether different. There is a simplicity and purity to what I hear the students saying, and the faculty seems to be protecting the kids and stewarding the global attention with sincerity and grace.
With all the handwringing we do about the state of the next generation, we should be grateful for this hunger erupting out of Gen Z’ers at Asbury. And this desperation for Jesus seems to be spreading to other university campuses around the country as well.
There is one consistent word I keep seeing in all the stories coming out of these outpouring encounters:
God made us to live in complete and total dependence on Him, and He longs to respond to our humble and penitent return to that posture.
There seems to be a unique, manifest presence of God over Asbury University right now, but we don’t have to travel to Kentucky to find our own place of humility and repentance.
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
–2 Chronicles 7:14
This is where we were designed to live and flourish. Political power, technology, and endless entertainment have proven their emptiness and futility. Jesus stands waiting with open arms. Perhaps a group of Gen Z students can lead the rest of us back into his embrace.
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Erik Cooper | The Stone Table