October 8, 2012

f(young adult attendance) = (flashiness of website)x(# of restaurants open past 9PM)

I likened the Christian Young Adult (CYA) scene in Warrenton to a used brownie pan.  Most of the CYAs (brownies) had left the pan (town) already, but there were some leftovers hanging out in a few corners of the pan.  Thus began an effort to scrape the edges of this metaphorical dessert tray and through social coercion (emails and mass texts, mostly) get the CYAs hanging out together.  In Warrenton, it met with some success and I was very blessed by it.

Staunton seems to be a much different situation, but the course of action may be quite similar.  There are plenty of young adults (read: unmarried and/or under 30ish) here; I work with them and see them around quite often.  The problem is that very few of them are sold out to Jesus.  I have found 2 that I'm certain have solid faith and have managed to actually hang out with one of them.

Staunton isn't a brownie pan.  It's a bag of Skittles and I'm looking as hard as I can for the red ones.

The first church I visited had 1 or 2 CYAs.  The second had a small handful more, though there didn't seem to be any structure or pattern to facilitate spending time together (I inquired).  This has led me to do something I am nearly ashamed of to reveal publicly... 

I looked for the church with the flashiest website.

Don't worry, I checked out their affiliations and statement of faith and church structure as well.  My reasoning is that if I want to find young adults, and they seem to be sparse,  I'll see if their gathering at the church with the flashy website.  I think there is a rough correlation between trendy-websitery and young-adult-attendishness.  

That said, there are things I am looking for in a church beside the presence of CYAs.  My goal at the moment is to see if they are concentrated somewhere so I can make contact and discover what kind of Christ-centered community they've got going on.  I am above all praying for God's guidance and direction with the choice of a church home, and I am working CYA recon into the search process.  I may need to encourage ecumenicism and take names and start making some things happen.

All things considered, my Average Emotional State is much better than it was in Warrenton.  The proximity to town, higher density of people and (almost forgot this one) GETTING PAID TO WORK IN A THEATER AND FINALLY ACHIEVING FORWARD MOTION IN MY DREAM CAREER are helping out.  Just a little.

I finished Eric Metaxas's bio about Dietrich Bonhoeffer last night.  More on that later.

What? No, of course I don't cry while reading non-fiction!  What a silly question.


  1. I like your 'bag of skittles' comment. I have been searching for years for the red ones. In the end, I learned to make friends with anyone and everyone who was friendly, regardless of age. I guess that comes with living here. The super-close girl friend I have now I met a few years after moving here. I now have 2 really close friends and I consider myself blessed. I have a whole lot of other friends that are nowhere near my age and I have been enriched so much by their friendship. Once I branched out of the 'they have to be the same age as me' mindset I had in college, it really opened up a whole new world of friendships. Oh, and another thing . . . people here don't really hang out with other people. If you want to do something, you have to do the inviting. The Browns had to learn this one too. It's weird, but you just kind of have to get over it.

  2. Zach, beautiful post. I suspect no longer living in the room you did while in High School does help your emotional state also! I am proud of you son. -Dad

  3. Wow, Zach! I love how you summarize!! Will continue to hold you up in prayer to locate the like-minded CYA's (or draw a few on the edge along in the process)!! Praising the LORD you are working in your passion - trusting HE will work out the rest, as well. XO My friend ~

  4. @Erin - I learned to branch out (in the way you mean) while I was in Warrenton; I still highly value those friendships, though that may not be apparent to someone who didn't know me in Warrenton, as I didn't really put it in context. :)

    @Dad - Haha definitely! I found your Christmas present today, by the way. Heh heh. Thanks Popsicle, love you!

    @Christie - Thank you for the prayers! They are always coveted.

  5. Well, you know there is a significant population density of CYAs in Blacksburg, which isn't TOO far away... ;)