Pastor Dave Edwards kicked off Spiritual Emphasis Week at Liberty University’s Wednesday convocation by challenging students to ask the “dangerous” question of what God wants from their lives.
“Some of us need to re-awaken our spiritual life because it’s easy for us to just think of life in terms of ourselves,” Edwards said. “The way we do that is by answering the question, ‘What does God want from you? How long has it been since you let that question cut through every area of your life?’”
Spiritual Emphasis Week, which takes place near the beginning of each semester, is meant to give non-Christian students an introduction to the gospel as well as encourage student-believers. Edwards will be speaking at Campus Church services throughout the week and at Friday’s convocation.
Edwards, a self-described “itinerant postmodern pastor,” was saved at the age of 9 and called to the ministry at 16. He began his speaking career at nursing homes, Sunday school classes and rescue missions in his hometown of Oklahoma City, Okla.
Edwards now travels full time speaking more than 500 times a year to more than 250,000 students and young adults. He uses a combination of Biblical truths and humor in his ministry to encourage Christ-centered lifestyles.
In Wednesday’s message, Edwards examined the principles of Jesus’ life, or “a life that works.” Edwards began by sharing an experience he once had after taking his car to a mechanic for repairs. When Edwards went to check on his car, he only wanted to know if it worked.
“I had this moment of clarity – that question is not just something we ask about something that is broken that is now fixed, but ‘Does it work?’ is the question we have to ask about the spiritual condition of our life. Does it work?” Edwards said.
Edwards told students that in order to have a life that works, they needed to live as Jesus did. He urged them not to get discouraged by thinking that this is an unrealistic goal, because Christians can have effective spiritual lives by living out Biblical principles.
Lives that “work” are always controlled by the interests of God instead of selfish interests and are always committed to involvement in the lives of others, he said. Lives that work are consumed with the idea of bringing glory to God.
Edwards read from Philippians 2:3-4 to emphasize this message: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”
Edwards is the author of 14 books, including “20 Things You Should Read,” “Everything Twentys,” “The Complete Evangelism Guidebook” and “Life.” Has also written a tract called “How to Make Life All Good.”