Unity in Christ
It has been a really, really long week. A good one, for sure, but long. Yesterday the crescendo of excitement, attendance, and encounters with Jesus continued to grow. The two lunchtime talks were the best attended of any that I’ve seen this year or last. The questions were honest, and the answers were articulate. I can’t believe how God just keeps pouring energy into us! We finish every day exhausted, get marginal hours of sleep, then spring up and do it again.
Our team has fought through sickness, discouragement, and resistance. Right now, both of our “house grandmas,” Sheila and Sandy, are in bed with the flu, and Stacie might be infected, too. I have a sore throat, though it might just be from talking. The Enemy is trying to take us out, but I have bad news for him: he’s gotta up his game to keep us down.
Yesterday was Thursday according to our new favorite website, isitthursday.org. That makes day 4 of mission work. The response from students has been impressive to say the least. I’m not sure how I can write it without being redundant from past days, but God met us where we were at and sent us the people we needed. After a few particularly long and frustrating conversations, at the last minute in the day God brought me someone who was actually interested in following logical argumentation. In his own thickly accented words, “You’re right, I’m not an atheist, I am maybe an agnostic. But I am very persuaded. You have begun to change my mind.” Stacie, in the midst of sickness, had the opportunity to talk through some emotional barriers and prayed with a Chinese woman to accept Christ for the first time! In a way, ministering to people felt more like ministering to ourselves.
As an added blessing, we had the privilege of sharing dinner with Dr. Vince Vitale, simultaneously one of the most intelligent and goofy people I’ve ever met. He, and the rest of the RZIM team for that matter, has been incredibly supportive, encouraging, and kind. It really showcases that, “so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” (Romans 12:5)
The word University combines “Unity” and “Diversity.” This seems to be a perfect word to describe the body of Christ; it is because of our diversity across language and culture that we find a perfect Unity in Christ. And it’s a family that continues to grow; last night I met a young man who I had talked to last year. Except, back then, he was a skeptic, and now he’s a child of God. It was a moment that pierced me to the heart, because he accepted Jesus nine months after we left. Who knows what sort of long-term impact we’ll have this year!
Last night Michelle Tepper talked to a small auditorium of college students about the topic: Will We Ever Be Satisfied? Love, Sex, and Relationships. You could have heard a pin drop in her pauses. God is hitting home, and it’s a joy to see Love transform the campus from the inside out!
Prayers for our last day of mission:
- HEALTH. We need to stop getting sick. Please especially pray for Sandy and Sheila.
- SEEDS. Let what we plant grow! Let the team coming back next year be amazed at how much growth happened in between our departure and their arrival. Go Jesus!
- UNITY. That the 40 different ministries on campus would unite this year and next to bring a unified face of the loving Christ to a campus who definitely needs it.
Your prayers and support have been greatly appreciated!! We love you all!
The Best is Yet to Come!
Eric Anderson for the ASU Go Team