Whether you are currently in high school, college, or beginning your career, God wants you to shine as a light for Him in the very season you currently find yourself. No matter where you are in life or what age you currently are, God is ready and willing to work through you, your words, and your actions to reveal His love to those with whom you have influence. The Bible is replete with examples of God working in and through youth in this way, and 1 Timothy 4:12 specifically even says that young people are to be examples of love to their fellow believers. With this in mind, here are 5 ways you can make a big difference at school, in your college, or at your workplace:
Learn People’s Names
This may seem like such a simple, barely worthwhile thing to do, but it does make a huge difference. The reality is that in this fast-paced, hustle culture in which we live, people rarely take the time to get to know each other and cultivate friendships anymore. If you will take the time to get to know the people around you, you will be showing them value as your fellow human beings and will help the folks around you feel seen and known.
Thank Your Teachers, Professors, Boss, and Co-Workers for All They Do
In the midst of our own busyness and daily to-do lists, it can be easy sometimes to overlook others and forget that everyone else is a real person with real struggles and concerns just like us. You will be showing the folks around you great love, care, and consideration when you make it your aim to put into practice the simple act of noticing them and saying “thank you!” for all they do. In the midst of our hustle and bustle culture where many people are just focused on their own interests, hearing a “thank you” is sometimes one of the most rare and uncommon occurrences these days. Seek to change that, and you will be making a huge difference!
Defend and Advocate for Others
Jesus was always intent on advocating for, defending, and serving the marginalized, ostracized, and needy people of the community. Make it your mission to advocate against the ill-treatment of others and replace it with some much-needed encouragement. Intentionally seek out those whom others regularly tear down and intentionally build them up instead, seeking to speak life over them every chance you get.
Invest Yourself Fully in the Work Before You
As C.T. Studd once wrote, “Only one life ’twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.” Whether you are in the season of school or career or both, make it your aim to redeem the time well. Work willingly with your hands to the glory of God, as Paul admonishes us in Colossians 3:23 – “whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men”. Be fully engaged in the work set before you, fully participating in what you are tasked with doing each day. Use your God-given gifts as described in Ephesians 2:10 – “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” In the midst of doing so, however, do not fall into the extreme of “hustling” – don’t spread yourself too thin that you can’t be fully present and available to reach out to others in need.
Pray for Others
It may sound cliche these days to say this, but it’s true – prayer does change things! One of the best ways you can minister to your fellow students, employers, professors, and coworkers is to seek to be an encouragement to them by interceding on their behalf before the throne. Take their prayer requests, needs, and concerns seriously, and let them know you are praying for them. This will be such a blessing to them, and your prayers may be the very ones the Lord uses to change their lives!
In the midst of it all, enjoy your days at school, college, or in your career, make the most of them, and purpose to keep them all in perspective. Be intentional to not allow the things of this world that claim to lead to our enjoyment and seek to take our attention away from what is most important, to become more important than the Maker of this world Whose light you should be seeking to spread to those within your circle of influence. Seek to redeem the time well, and you will be making quite the difference!