I remember the T.V. show Identity hosted by Bob Saget. The point of the show was there were 100 people with specific descriptions of who they were. The contestant had to correctly guess their identity. Often times I run into this complex problem when dealing with college-age people. Instead of 100 people with 100 different identities- I am faced with the task of finding out which identity out of 100 possibilities one person is latching onto in a particular day or week. College-age people are in a very formative time for what I call Identity Searching. In essence they are trying to figure out who they are and their place of significance in the world. During this time they can seem: unpredictable, unreliable and scatter brained. What I have gathered is that they simply need someone to lead them to the tools that will help them discover who they really are.
There are two different types of people when it comes to this task: The Leader and The Pusher.
The Leader- This type of person will lead a college age person to the right tools to discover who they are and what they want to be. It is crucial during Identity Searching that a wonder for God is birthed. This is not something that an individual can MAKE a college-age person see. A wonder for God can however be lead to by pointing someone to God and showing them how to use the proper tools (prayer, Bible, nature, circumstances, experience and questions) to come up with the proper conclusion.
The Pusher-This type of person tries to squeeze college-age people into a mold of who THEY think the individual is. The pusher does not take into account that they are merely one part of the life story of the person they are dealing with. In many cases college-age people who are trained by pushers will be who they are told to be for a season but once left to their own will recluse back to discovering who they really are.
The main difference between a leader and a pusher is this: at the end of the day a college-age person who is influenced by a leader will more likely develop in the wonder of God and truly discover who they are.
Which are you?