I’m recycling this June 2006 post because I like to remind people of this book each year. Here is one of my favorite quotes by the author, J. Budziszewski:
Though it always comes as a surprise to intellectuals, there are some forms of stupidity that you must be highly intelligent and educated to commit. God keeps them in His arsenal to pull down mulish pride, and I discovered them all.
Any correlation of the words in bold to postmodernism is purely deliberate.
Despite the title, How to Stay Christian in College is a book that anyone can benefit from. This should be must reading for students headed to college and for their parents. The author, J. Budziszewski (I’ll bet even he misspells his name sometimes), was an atheist when he became a philosophy professor at the University of Texas. He converted and is now a stellar defender of the faith. He is extremely intelligent, yet writes in a way that makes difficult and important concepts easy to understand. This book would make a great graduation gift.
Last year this book was given to High School Juniors and Seniors at our church. Click here to view a set of PowerPoint slides I used to present an overview (it covers parts of the book plus other things I added) or go here and right-click and select “Save target as” to download them. There are speaker notes below the slides.
An alarming number of youth abandon their faith in college and make all sorts of mistakes that take years or even lifetimes to recover from. They also miss out on opportunities to share the Gospel with people and to defend the Christian worldview during the inevitable philosophical and religious discussions that take place on campus. While preparing for all the practical considerations of college – majors, living accommodations, activities – Christians should ensure that they are well equipped to live out their faith while on campus. Make no mistake: Most colleges aggressively live and teach the opposite of the Christian worldview.
He offers very practical advice and how to not only survive but to thrive on campus. Being a Christian in college doesn’t mean avoiding all the fun activities that take place. I was basically a pagan while in college, so I can relate to how much this book could help others.
One of the most interesting insights is that going to a “Christian” college where the professors embrace liberal theology can be more dangerous than going to a secular college where you know what you are going to face.
I enjoy anything by this author, but I especially recommend Ask Me Anything: Provocative Answers for College Students for high school and college students.
One final question as you head off to perhaps the biggest life change you’ll ever undertake: Will you convert them, or will they convert you?