Party Over Here, Party Over There: Looking At The College Party Scene In A New Light
Whether you are at a four year public school, a small private school, or somewhere in the middle on that spectrum, college parties are everywhere. They come in many different shapes and sizes, and learning how to navigate them can be difficult. Kaylee looks deeper at this idea and encourages us to see them as more than just a place for drinking and bad decisions, but rather a place for us to find new friends, have good conversations and show the love of Christ through our actions and words.
Party Over Here, Party Over There
Okay, let’s talk about them: Parties
No, I don’t mean your 10 year old birthday party where you had a Princess cake or an Fear Factor Party. I’m talking about college parties.
Depending on where you go to school these may look different. These could range from full on Project X style parties (let’s hope that’s not the case) to a get together with a few friends and some beers.
Whatever the term “party” means to you, that’s what I’m speaking to.
Growing up in a Christian household, with a busy schedule all the time, always being in class with a variety of people to be social or become friends with, the idea of parties never really crossed my mind. I knew it was something people did, but it didn’t really interest me.
See the thing is, I saw parties in a very specific way.
In my mind parties were something people went to where everyone was drinking (a drinking ALOT), making stupid decisions, and had nothing better to do with their time.
Then, I got to college and my perspective changed.
Now, take into account that I am a double major in Dance and Communication studies, involved with Delight and a sorority so….not many options to make guy friends in any of those places. They were all just groups of girls. As much as I love girls, I had never been surrounded so predominantly by girls all the time and felt like I needed some guy friends in my life. So, when I as invited to a party, I went for it.
When I got to this party, I remember thinking “Wow. There are so many guys here and everyone is just sitting around and talking. How social of them all!”
While I know the majority of people think of parties as a place to drink and make bad decisions that are permissable, I want to encourage you to see parties as a thing to go to to just hang out and talk to people.
Parties are what you make of them!
Go to parties. Be part of this culture, so you can be relatable to the people who need to hear Jesus who are at those parties. You don’t have to partake in everything they are doing or even partake a little. YOU get to decide what you do and don’t do.
YOU get to be in complete control of it (what a cool position to be in).
I’m here to tell you that the college party experience does not have to be the typical “Let’s bring drink and forget what we did the night before” experience. That’s no fun. What IS fun is going to parties, meeting some pretty cool people, having some neat conversations, and being able to have even more friends and familiar faces on campus.
Remember: The people at the parties are people just like you. You may be meeting them in a party environment, but that’s not all they do. They do homework. They eat lunch. They have parents just like you! And they usually need a good friend outside of a Thursday or Friday night.
Look at parties as a way to be social and meet people you normally wouldn’t hang out with. Build a relationship with them that later down could result in a really deep conversation about life or a hard time they are going through. You never know who you are going to meet or whose life you could impact just by talking to them!
Sometimes, Christians believe they need to stay completely away from these sorts of environments and that couldn’t be more from the truth. Jesus came and had dinner with the sinners and tax collectors and everyone in between. We are called to go into those places and be amongst them and show them Jesus either through our actions or our words. Don’t be scared of parties, rather jump right in and ask guidance from the Lord to lead you to who you should talk to. You never know what He could use you for!
P.S. If you do have friends that want to drink at parties, why not be their favorite person, provide them with a designated driver instead of a sketchy uber ride, and even hold their hair back if they need you. This is stuff as Christians we like to separate ourselves from, but I’m telling you this is not something you need to exclude yourself from, maybe you just take a different approach!