Over the past two decades of being within and over youth ministries, two things have become abundantly clear. The first is that students who have a personal relationship with Christ that is vibrant and growing are the ones who stay plugged into their faith as well as the church. The second is that those students who don’t have a relationship with Christ have the greatest opportunity to know Him through a relationship with those who do. Crave was always about the former; it purposed to create a group of students who loved the Lord and desired more of His righteousness (Matthew 5:6). While the desire and craving can never be satiated, if the goal is only ever that sole relationship, it leaves little opportunity for students to invest in the salvation of others.
Increase was birthed out of the desire not only to see students grow in their relationship with Christ but to eventually be so full of His love that an overflow must occur. 1 Thessalonians 3:12 says, “And may the Lord cause you to increase and overflow with love for one another and for everyone, just as we also do for you.” A student’s relationship with Christ needs to contain desire, but it also must include the element of passionate devotion expressed in love. Middle school (Increase) and high school (Overflow) are about loving and investing in students so that they might know God. In their increasing love for Him, they overflow that love into their relationships with all of those around them. For it is in the increase and overflow that the opportunity for those who don’t personally know Christ to experience the love of God which can transform and save.