A study by the Fuller Youth Institute revealed that the more a student perceives his or her youth group to be an open and safe place to express doubt, questions, and problems, the more likely the student is to have a positive spiritual transition to college.
Resources to help students wrestle with faith before heading to college:
“God made man in his own image, and one of the noblest features of the divine likeness in man is his capacity to think.” – John Stott
“Faith does not deepen through being allowed to stagnate, but through being applied. In this respect, doubt is a positive thing. It is a stimulus to growth in faith. It snaps us out of complacency.” – Alister McGrath
“The reason many of us do not ardently believe in the gospel is that we have never given it rigorous testing, thrown our hard questions at it, faced it with our most prickly doubts.” – Eugene Peterson
- Affirming doubt: Helping Students Ask and Answer Tough Questions by Derek Melleby
- Why Students Abandon Their Faith: Lessons from William Wilberforce by Derek Melleby
- C.S. Lewis for College Students: Interview with Renowned Lewis Scholar David C. Downing by Derek Melleby
- Silence is Not Golden: The Why and How of Sticky Faith Conversations at Home by Kara Powell and Brad Griffin of the Fuller Youth Institute
- Write out a “statement of faith” explaining why you believe what you believe and share it with someone who will listen and ask good questions.
- Watch and discuss a video from the Veritas Forum website. (I highly recommend talks by Os Guinness and Timothy Keller.) Veritas Forums are university events that engage students and faculty in discussions about life’s hardest questions and the relevance of Jesus Christ to all of life.
- The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism, Timothy Keller
- Doubting: Growing Through the Uncertainties of Faith, Alister McGrath
- Sticky Faith: Everyday Ideas to Build Lasting Faith in Your Kids, Kara Powell & Chap Clark
Please let us know if you have any questions about the list of resources or have suggestions for additional resources.