Pekin Campus Life

We Just Sat There...

I picked Josh up for lunch one Saturday. On our way, we went by the thrift store and by his work to check the schedule. We talked about his classes and extracurriculars. We reminisced about the first time he came to Campus Life. His friend just picked him up and didn’t really say what they were doing.

Lunch was great too. We got to talk about all the things we could do to make Campus Life a better place and how to get more students like him there.

But when we got to his driveway, we just sat there. He didn’t get out of the car. Our conversation continued for the next half hour about the more difficult things in his life. "Things haven’t been normal for a few years." Josh was able to share a few of the harder things he and his family are facing.

What I heard from Josh was pretty serious and I couldn’t help but think high school students shouldn’t have to worry about the things he is worried about. But I’m glad Josh got it out. I’m glad he knows his YFC leaders are a safe place to share.

There are thousands of students at Pekin and I know many of them have stories like Josh’s. It seems impossible to be able to reach a substantial portion of them. But we’re continuing to work with the dozen’s God has brought to us.

Continue to pray for us leaders and the student’s we work with. We want to keep encouraging them through their hard situations and point them towards a Savior who loves them.

Thank You For Being Brave



Pekin Students


Thank you for being brave.


You shared your fears, your shame, your sin. You confessed sacred words, words that  were your secrets. In a room full of peers your words were there for all to see. 

You were open.  You were honest.  You were real. And I couldn’t be more proud of you.



In case you missed it or you aren’t in high school, April was a month of secrets at Campus Life.  Students had the chance to share anything safely and anonymously. But before we as leaders asked anything of them, we went first. We laid out our own secrets from both present and past for students to see.

The intention was not to force students into emotional wrecks or to embarrass them.   Instead our goal was to create a safe space, a place where they would know maybe for the first time they were not alone in their struggles. 


It goes back to the beginning of time, since Adam and Eve.  The fall.  The apple.  The snake and his lies.   As they hide from God in their makeshift clothing, He appears and asks them a simple question:  “Who told you that you were naked?”




Who told you you weren't good at anything?

Who told you you would never get into college?

Who told you you would be just like your parents?

Who told you no one would ever love you?

Who told you you'd never be as good as your brother or sister.

Who told you your dream was stupid?

Who said you wouldn’t be able to wear white at your wedding?

Who said you were ugly?

Who told you you were fat?

Who told you that you weren't enough?

Who told you you’d never be better than your addiction?

Who told you___________________?

Ephesians 2:1-5 says

Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins.  You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world.  He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God.  All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.

But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!







Maybe you’re already in Christ but haven’t been living like it. Let’s talk.

Maybe you’re not and it seems like there’s more. Let’s talk.

Maybe you think I’m stupid and you think there is a better way. Let’s talk.

Regardless of where you’re at us leaders are committed to helping you find the answers. It wasn’t long ago that we were where you are.


For now we’ll keep the secrets inbox open and might review them from time to time.  You’re welcome to share your secret with a leader IRL or online. 

I’m not sure how to close this out so I’ll just stop talking and leave you with one last verse.


James 5:16

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.