Last Saturday I felt like some brunch.
A hot soy cappuccino and a plate of smashed avo (with bacon and a hash brown on the side, of course) were compelling enough to get me out of my cosy bed that cold winter morning. Matt (my fiancé) had the same thought. After taking a few too many minutes deliberating where we should go, delirious from our empty tummies and decaffeinated brains, we settled on a location and headed out.
The venue we’d chosen had a high rating on Beanhunter (an app for the coffee-obsessed), aesthetically pleasing photos on Instagram and great reviews online. Needless to say, the expectations were high.
However, as we arrived and walked through the doors, we realised the place was almost empty! It seemed so empty in fact that we hesitated, concerned it was still closed. It wasn’t. Matt and I felt oddly concerned that we had made the wrong decision. Doubt filled our fuzzy brains and regret sank deep in our empty bellies, but it was too late. We’ ordered and the coffee was on its way.
It took us a while to settle in, questioning each other numerous times about why it was so quiet. Was there something wrong with the food or the staff? The experience was oddly uncomfortable.
But we ate and drank, and honestly, the food was great and exactly what I’d hoped for. The coffee hit the spot and we left with full bellies and lighter wallets. In fact, I would send anyone I know there – it was delicious! I couldn’t (and still can’t) figure out why the place was so dead. It ticked all the boxes and was a prime hipster-brunch-time spot, yet there were few, if any, hipsters in sight!
It got me thinking. Why are we so programmed to go where the people go? I’m sure if the café had been full and bustling, we wouldn’t have thought twice about the quality of the food or coffee. I wanted to be where the people were.
I think this is one of the many reasons our Student Movement is exploding with growth in recent times. With its humble beginnings and dedicated students, people are finally starting to catch wind of something great. The invitation to be a part of something bigger is being accepted by students all over the country, even as we speak, and I believe it’s due to the fact that our network is growing, and teenagers by nature want to be where the people are. They want to be a part of something.
Mustard is a movement empowering high school students to change their contexts from within it. That’s incredible and a privilege to be a part of. What we offer hasn’t changed. We still provide students with the support, community and resources that I wish I had when I was at school. What has changed, however, is our network, degree of reach and engagement.
In 2016 the Student Movement felt like the café I visited on Saturday morning: phenomenal quality yet low in participation. What I find myself part of in 2019 is something quite different. The loyalty and commitment of our original Student Movement students and supporters has equipped us to expand our reach and empower more students, who are now empowering one another.
Looking forward, our ‘café’ is no longer empty on a Saturday morning. It’s bustling and lively, and there’s a line out the door! Towards 100 exists to support the growth our Student Movement is experiencing, helping us ensure that we can honour and support our Student Leaders as they continue to make waves for the Kingdom of God.
I would love you to consider being a part of this change. Can you support us this June as we seek to raise $50,000 to support a total of 100 Lunchtime Groups by 2020?
When I started at Mustard in 2016, we had a total of 17 (somewhat flailing) Lunchtime Groups. But 2019 began with 50 Lunchtime Groups and we currently have 54!
Growth at Mustard is real. It’s healthy. It’s consistent. It’s happening!
Can you help us sustain and steward this well?
You can find out more about Towards 100 here!
Have a wonderful week and God bless!
ABOVE: Camberwell Girls Grammar Lunchtime Group