The following is an excerpt from my book Campus Renewal – A Practical Plan to Unite Campus Ministries in Prayer and Evangelism.
The University of Texas
The University of Texas is thought by many to be the most liberal campus in Texas, which still feels like the “Bible Belt” compared to other parts of the United States. Often, well meaning Christian parents have some fear about their kids coming to UT. Many encourage their children to go to more conservative schools like Baylor or Texas A&M.
The typical comment heard by a high school graduate who tells someone in their youth group that he is going to UT is: “Oh, I will pray for you!” They mean well with their words, but in these words they speak unbelief. Jesus said, “out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34). Christian students, when they do come to UT, come with what I call a “retreat mentality.” By that I mean they come to UT thinking, “I may lose my faith, so I had better find a Christian community to protect me.” Yet scripture leaves no place for retreat. We are to have an “advancement mentality,” because the gates of hell will not prevail against the church (Matthew 16:18).
Gates are for defense. They are meant to stop invaders. The enemy is on the defense. We are advancing. This is Jesus’s promise — that we will prevail against the enemy, bringing life and salvation to our campuses, even those perceived to be the farthest from God. Students and campus pastors at UT have come to believe Jesus’s promise. As a result, God is at work in tremendous ways.
God At Work
God is always at work. He will continue to write His story until the time comes for the earth to burn away and the new heaven and new earth to be created. This is His promise. “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (II Peter 3:9). This is why He is waiting.
God is not finished redeeming and transforming those whom He created. “This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). God is patient, continually working to redeem all people groups. We know this is true, if only because the end has not yet come.