Sharing Faith without the Guilt

Kara Powell | Jun 29, 2010

Last week I had coffee with Doug and Sandy Schaupp. Doug’s got a very cool title; he is the Growth Coach for the Western U.S. for Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship. The Schaupps live near Pasadena and our kids have been at the same preschool. I’m a big fan of a book Doug co-authored called Being White: Finding Our Place in a Multiethnic World and have recommended it a number of times. I haven’t read his newer book yet called I Once Was Lost: What Postmodern Skeptics Taught Us About Their Path to Jesus.

Doug’s got some great insights on how to help students share their faith. He mentioned that instead of asking college students, “How are you doing at sharing your faith?”, he’s found it more effective to ask, “Where is your friend at?” (pardon the bad grammar). That way, the focus isn’t on pointing your finger at your own students, but rather on helping them think about what God is doing in their friend. The focus is on the spiritual state of the friend, not an assessment of how your student is doing.

This shift is subtle but important. I imagine our students would be sharing their faith more if we invited them to think more about what is best with their friend.

Kara Powell

Dr. Kara Powell is the Executive Director of the Fuller Youth Institute (FYI), a faculty member at Fuller Theological Seminary, and Fuller's Chief of Leadership Formation. Named by Christianity Today as one of “50 Women You Should Know,” Kara serves as a Youth and Family Strategist for Orange, and also speaks regularly at parenting and leadership conferences. Kara is the author or coauthor of a number of books, including Growing Young, Growing With, The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family, Sticky Faith Curriculum, Can I Ask That?, Deep Justice Journeys, Deep Justice in a Broken World, Deep Ministry in a Shallow World, and the Good Sex Youth Ministry Curriculum. Kara lives with her husband Dave and their three children, Nathan, Krista, and Jessica, in Southern California.


More from this author

More From Us

Hello, WELCOME TO FYI
Join the community

Sign up for our email today and choose from one of our popular free downloads sent straight to your inbox. Plus, you’ll be the first to know about our sales, offers, and new releases.

Join the community

Sign up for our email today and choose from one of our popular free downloads. Plus, you’ll be the first to know about our sales, offers, and new releases.