Monday, November 01, 2010

I wish I could adequately express all of the ways that God has been working at UNC-Charlotte and Queens lately. I will attempt to do that first by telling you a story: As I stepped onto the campus of Queens College yesterday, I was filled with frustration. My first appointment had cancelled on me and so I waited for an hour in the campus coffee shop for my next appointment. As I waited, I prayed that God would allow me to care well for the students I was meeting with that day in joy, despite my temptation to be irritated because it was rainy and they were unreliable. I confessed that I had nothing to give out at that moment, and that I would need to rely on the Lord's strength to change my heart toward them. I asked God to initiate with me that day because i didn't have the capacity to pour out.

My next appointment, Rachel, arrived on time and we got started on the outline that I had planned for our meeting time that day. With each new person that I meet, I use a picture survey, called Soularium, to get to know them a little better. The survey consists of 50 random pictures and five spiritual questions that start simple and lead to a discussion about spiritual things. The last question in the survey is, "Which picture describes what you wish your spiritual life were like?" Rachel chose a picture of a content couple holding hands to answer this question and said that she wished she could know God deeply. I was then able to tell Rachel that the Bible says this type of relationship with God IS possible! I let her know that God loves us and has a perfect plan for our life and part of that perfect plan is that he wants us to have intimacy with him. However, because we are sinful, we are separated from God because He is perfectly holy. This is similar to the picture of the content couple. Any content couple can tell you that relationships are broken and conflict is present when sins like selfishness or pride are involved. In our relationship with God, we are the ones who are in the wrong. Because it is our fault, we do not deserve to be back in relationship with God. However, because God is perfect love, He still desires to be in that intimate relationship with us. And so, He responds to our sin by coming to us in the person of Jesus Christ. While we cannot be perfect enough to have a relationship with God, He is perfect enough to cover our sins with His goodness. After I explained all of this to Heather, I told her that the Bible says it is not enough just to know these truths, but we have to individually decide to enter into the relationship that God is offering to us by believing that Jesus Christ has covered our sin with his righteousness and telling God that we want to be in that intimate relationship with Him, where He has the control over our lives. Heather sat back in amazement as she realized that God doesn't require us to "clean ourselves up" before we come to Him but rather to just believe that we are UNABLE to be perfect and that is why Christ (who is perfect) came to us in the first place. At the end of our conversation, Rachel said that she really wanted to enter into a relationship with God, and so, we prayed together! Praying with Rachel for the first time in her life was a joyous way for me to remember and celebrate the relationship God has initiated with me! It reminded me that even on rainy days when my plans don't work out as I want them to, the Lord is sovereign and He has initiated with me in significant ways!

Each week I spend time with a handful of students one-on-one to train them in leadership and disciple them in their personal walks with Christ. I also spend time with students who have never heard that there is a larger story that we are a part of that includes God's desire to enter into an intimate relationship with them. Every one of these women have become dear to me because they all have stories, like Heathers, that fit into the larger story that God is writing. You all are in that larger story as well! Without your prayers, your financial support, and your encouragement, I would not be able to step onto campus each day and share the story of God's love and perfect plan to these women who desperately need to hear and believe it. Thank you for making God's story real to these students!

Queens Update: There are 6 students at Queens right now who I am meeting with regularly to pray with about the potential of starting Campus Crusade for Christ next semester. Each week when we meet I try to cast vision for them. What would it look like for God to raise the 6 of you up as leaders of a movement on campus that seeks to introduce other students to Jesus and give them the opportunity to begin a personal relationship with God?

Please continue to pray that these 6 students would catch this vision and follow God's leading to be bold with their classmates and pray with audacious faith for God to do BIG things on their campus!

UNCC Update: So many things are going on here! We have 3 men's BIble Studies, 3 women's Bible Studies (I am co-leading a freshman girl's study and an upperclassman girl's study), a weekly meeting (which you are all invited to anytime- Tuesdays at 7pm- Call me for more information!) with 100+ students coming each week, weekly social events where students can gather and build community, and Soularium outreaches on campus! Just this past week during a Soularium Survey outreach, another girl, Heather, decided to put her trust in Christ for the first time and begin a relationship with Him! Coming up we also have our winter conference- Encounter- which I am getting really excited about! Encounter is a phenomenal conference because it is an opportunity for students to hear God's truth from speakers who have been equipped by God to share it in a way that is specific to meeting college students exactly where they are, as well as a conference that is fun and motivating for students!

Please Pray for:

- Pray that God would begin a revival at UNCC and Queens where students are filled with joy and peace in believing that they "may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13)"

- Pray that God would continue to remind me of His initiative with me and that I would respond by "rejoicing in the hope of the glory of God (Romans 5:3)."

- Pray for new believers, Rachel and Heather, that they God would make them "intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, their eyes focused and clear, so that they can see exactly what it is he is calling them to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for his followers, oh, the utter extravagance of his work in us who trust him—endless energy, boundless strength! (Ephesians 1:18, The Message Translation)"

-Pray that I would have wisdom in relating to the students I am discipling and training. "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind." James 1:5

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