I am very excited to spotlight an amazing ministry here in Abilene that we at The Well love very much. Bryan Levrets, the area director of Young Life, is a good friend of ours and his vision and strategy for ministry to students is phenomenal. We are thankful to get to partner with them in ministry and excited to continue to get involved and support their ministry. The blog below was written by Bryan on his experience with Young Life, the way it changed his life and how he is serving them now.
After 10 years on Young Life staff and almost 15 of being a Young Life leader, I have learned one thing. Adolescents, now more than ever, are in desperate need of someone to enter into their world and present to them the person of Jesus Christ. That is what we do in Young Life. We go where kids are and build a relationship so that we can introduce them to the most captivating human to ever walk the face of the earth.
In 1941 a man named Jim Rayburn decided that he wanted to do ministry like Jesus did. He started chasing after lost kids in Dallas, Texas and that is exactly what our staff and volunteers do here in Abilene today. We have leaders pursuing middle school kids, high school kids, college kids, kids with special needs, and teen moms. Young Life does all of this to earn a sympathetic hearing for the Gospel.
My Young Life journey started as a freshman at Abilene High School in 1999. I was a kid that had grown up in church and came from a great family that loved the Lord. Even though my parents did what they could to introduce me to Christ, it wasn’t until a college kid named Mark Rogers started chasing me and my friends that I started to see what John 10:10 calls “abundant life.” After my junior year in high school, I had the chance to go to a Young Life camp called SharpTop Cove. It was there that the Gospel finally penetrated my hardened heart.
Now we are encouraging and educating our Young Life leaders here in Abilene to do the exact same thing that Mark did with me. Go where kids are. Earn the right to be heard. Share the greatest love story the world has ever known.
Our leaders are introducing adolescents to Jesus Christ and helping them grow in their faith. We accomplish this by …
- Praying for young people.
- Going where kids are and building personal relationships with them.
- Earning the right to share the Good News of Jesus Christ.
- Providing fun, adventurous, life-changing and skill-building experiences.
- Inviting kids to personally respond to the Good News and walking in friendship with them regardless of their response.
- Preparing kids for a life-long relationship with Christ and a love for His Word, His mission and the local church.
- Working in community alongside like-minded adults (volunteer leaders, committee members, donors and staff).
We have opportunities to get involved no matter your time or abilities. We work with adults in the community, which we refer to as “committee”, to help support our volunteer leaders and staff in reaching more kids. This is 4-5 hours a month and involved planning and executing upcoming fundraisers and events. We train volunteer leaders in the methodology of Young Life to build relationships to earn the right to share the gospel. Our volunteer leaders are asked to give 10-12 hours per week pursuing kids in Abilene. We are also always looking for more folks to get involved financially. They can do this by playing in our annual golf tournament or clay shoot, or host a table at our annual fundraising banquet in the fall that we call “Round Up.” No matter the time or money that you have to give, we can find a spot for YOU to join us in reaching adolescents with the Good News of Jesus Christ.
You can find more information here!