Faith Integration in the University Classroom

In Higher Ed by David MeyerLeave a Comment

Faith integration in learning entails several concepts from setting a spiritual tone in the course through prayer, but also through mentoring, and equipping students with skills and talents to further the Great Commission.

God is in all space and the web and broader contexts such as mobile and wearable apps is a space, and God is in that space. We learn first that God is a creator in Genesis 1:1 and being a designer, and teaching designers we can imitate Christ through our process. In 1 Corinthians 10:31 it says, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

Doing projects or assignments to the glory of God can be achieved in simple and complex ways. The simplicity of doing a job well regardless of the project’s scope and with a good attitude and demeanor, can reflect doing it for the glory of God, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem, it could still have an eternal ripple in the hearts of those that worked on the project alongside the designer.

Pedagogically speaking, faith integration entails more than praying before class and sharing scripture, it’s a profound methodology of intentionality in praying over your students and classes, asking for opportunities to mentor students, and sharing pieces of your own Christian journey as the Holy Spirit leads and is appropriate. Beyond the holistic approach is the unique capabilities to impact culture, the industry and even the web for Christ in the work that designers do.

The modern student doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.Faith integration can be seen with mentoring students individually and collectively. Mentoring students include providing career advice not just through practical career advice but prayerful consideration and spiritual advice as the Holy Spirit leads.

In more complex methodologies we find that social good projects go beyond the Fourth Order of Design into what could be called Missional Design. This design process moves towards the fulfillment of the Great Commission through projects that aid and support existing Missional frameworks such as a church or non-profit or entirely new concepts that benefit the body of Christ as a whole while advancing the Gospel.

How do we encourage students to participate in the ideation of Missional Design? Fostering a spiritual environment that is rooted in scripture is a mandatory standard. Praying Life over projects is another way, and being in prayer and asking the original creator for creative guidance and inspiration can help go beyond the traditional design thinking process into more tangible projects.

In addition, equipping students who to the latest knowledge of our fields (not necessarily trends) but being on the pioneering forefront of design, VR/AR and technology as a whole will allow deep faith integration by allowing students to aid those organizations spreading the Gospel to take advantage of the pioneering technology and design methodologies to not just ideate a prototype but to create a working product that propels the faith-based organization further in its efforts to communicate the Gospel.

Faith Integration as producing content to aid in the Great Commission can be seen in the classroom beyond the typical prayer as one would pray over a meal, but equipping students to have comprehensive mechanisms to bring into being definitive design solutions. Pushing students to adopt the mindset of if it is Christian, it ought to be better, it ought to be excellent.

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