Archive for the 'ministry' Category

perspectives

Tonight was the first (techncially second since I missed the first) class of Perspectives in World Missions. It’s a class recommended to me at debrief after Thailand, and something I happened to see on a church bulletin in my hopping madness to community. I’m taking it through for credit through Trinity Evangelical in Deerfield; thus, score one for the m.theo and zero for the m.eng.

I’m reminded more humbling that everything I do, save, even experience on this side of heaven is in transit and that things are simply things. For someone who spent the majority of this past summer in airports and airplanes, as a person I’m constantly in motion, moving from one to the next. Tonight, as we spent hours pouring over scripture and stott and piper, there was stillness, volume, fruitition — this is real. and it brings joy to this sojourner through the streets of los angeles.

overseas

Being here challenges me that everyday, I am a disciple of His and must not bow down to the ways of this world (both flesh and spiritual). It’s often in the small things that are most difficult… passing by spirit houses on the way to university, talking with students that have no idea whatsoever of a creator, sundays being counted as sacred only on Walk Street Bazaar. The long-term team here is amazing — one family, one couple, and three others that form an international team held in the grips of His grace on a daily basis. The love, hospitality and compassion they have for us and the students are simply mindblowing.

An unreached people group is not simply a group that has no access to the gospel… it’s a group where there are no people who know their language and culture and whom are there to speak it with them. It still doesn’t feel like I’m on m-, just that I am here… living, breathing, being, learning Thai, language, culture, Eastern… Jesus looked at the crowd and had compassion. I am praying I can do the same.

I constantly battle fear for the warfare that is here. I love doing this. It’s hard… but it brings me joy.

urbana 2009

http://www.urbana09.org/

The Urbana 2009 website is up. Urbana is the largest missions conference in North America ever, accumulating over 20,000 college students in one location to worship, pray, and seek how the Kingdom of God plays out in their own lives. I attended this conference in 2006 and was blown away at the sheer magnitude of college students all across the country who are simply making Christ known in their lives and worlds. The speakers are phenomenal, worship cross-cultural, and seminars rich in knowledge and wisdom.

But besides all those things, since those things alone are not worth naught without the God of the universe changing hearts and lives within each of those five days.

So yes — GO! :)

babel

Over the past 3.5ish years I’ve been at college, I’ve heard over two dozen or so messages on community and love and maybe one on the Gospel of the Cross. Yet true community does not occur until there is a foundational knowledge of the Christ’s substitutionary atonement and His propitiation for our sins. There is no Body without the Head.

… not a judgement (because most of the AA community runs away screaming at the sight of that word)… just an observation.

 

“… come let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth…” — gen.11.4

question of wills

Question. As a small group leader in an asian community affiliated with Intervaristy, is it wrong for me to ‘teach’ doctrines of election and justification by faith alone if I hold them to be truth? (I use ‘teach’ loosely as in, if they ask questions concerning election & depravity, I answer them from a Reformed point of view). I ask this because the half of the people in my small group hold pretty fervently to the idea of free will (i.e. being able to choose our own salvation without interaction from God)… the other half, I think don’t care either way as much. In the beginning I acknowledge that is remains a somewhat controversial issue, but that I believe in election as truth. 

 

So what would you do? Present both views without bias? Or emphasizing what you deem as Truth knowing your sg might revolt o_O

more than life

Last night, my fellowship cancelled it’s normal large group session and decided to reserve Barton Hall for the evening (read: an airplane hanger transformed into a ginormous gym. It’s massive!) Whilst there was a tad of commotion amongst the other fellowships (‘Wow, you guys cancelled your large group just to play sports??”) I was thinking today while I was showering and getting ready for work — why not?

Somewhere in the midst of playing touch football — and being unashamedly proud that boyfriend is arguably fastest boy I know :) — and kickball and simply bumming around the 2095709314 square feet we had access to… seeing dozens of new faces from people who had invited their friends, housemates, classmates… striking up a conversation with the two students who were on shift that night about who we were and why we were there…. should that not be the focus of a fellowship aiming to seek kingdom come on this campus?

Last week in small group we studied the fact that Jesus had a ministry and a message in Mark 1– while the message was the crux and the ‘reason why He has come,’ without the ministry it would simply be a hands-off Christ in a world in need of healing…. how can that be? It’s good knowing we serve a God who does not simply care about our spiritual well-beings but is even deliberate with our physical, emotional, mental health :)

all things new

G.Jao’s idea for the next three years of my life:

Work for a few years at high-paying enginerding job. Save up $$. Send parents off to nice vacation in Hawaii. In their hotel room, leave vase of flowers with a note saying, “Dear parentals, enjoy this vacation on me! By the way, I have just changed my job — please change my email address to w@intervarsity.org… “

!!

Back from Chapter Focus Week and trying to learn what it means to trust…

pre-quantum musings

I sit at my desk with nine prayer letters in front of me… places in need of gospel, of aid, of Jesus. from brothers i’ve known since before we knew the Lord to sisters i’ve only met this semester,… despite the reluctance for some to believe in the effectiveness of STMs, I still want to believe, believe that the Lord can use them for His good, for their good,…

From Benin to Israel to Gabon to SE Asia to the inner city to Brazil to even our own coasts and nation,… the kingdom is everywhere.

On the other hand, I’m falling in love with this song — http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendID=212938853 go to Used to Be. There’s also the remixx which is growing on me. It plays on repeat as I cram for quantum mechanics tonight.

The Church

A phrase (or, I guess, moreso a collection of words than a phrase) I hear tossed around a lot is, the church.

The Church isn’t meeting my needs right now.

I’m so dissappointed sometimes in The Church for being so hostile to nonbelievers.

I can’t believe The Church would make such an outrageous statement on homosexual marriages.

The Jesus behind it all is fine,… I just don’t really like The Church.

Sometimes, upon hearing such phrases — and knowing that I myself have used this illustrious phrase more than once — I wonder… who am I actually talking about? Is it a group of snotty people sitting somewhere, reciting their memorized bible verses and shunning the lost & poor? Are they people you hear about the news, or people whom seem to wrong those you love, or those whom seem to say the wrong thing or make the wrong decisions? Are they those you see on the news, the fundamental or mega-church congregations?

To those issues, I hold this challenge… You are the church. Jesus proclaims one Body, one resurrection, one church that He will call His bride and rapture prefix to the second coming. Yet… we impose such judgments, divisions on ourselves.

If we wish to truly see a change in The Church in our generation,… well,… I think we need to become the church first. And until then, we have no excuse to blame issues that are caused by the sinfulness that is oh so ingrained into our own bodies as others (to quote Relient K, I’ll point one finger at you, and four back at me.)

contra-conditional

currently spinning: came to the rescue — hillsong united (acoustic)

there are days when it feels like there’s an epic battle discerning how to act and love and support my fellowship.

i’ve always considered taking an year off from school to go on staff somewhere. intervarsity at it’s best is an organization that i believe can be engaging college students to be concerned with the kingdom of god in a tangible & ideological way. yet, when i think that it’s my school that no staff desire to come to,… that it’s my school that has the need,… i shudder at the idea of having to stay here another year.

i realize that for those in chicago, never once did i seriously consider leaving or abandoning the people, the church, the leadership, because of roadblocks or bumps. i realize that even on swavt, despite all of the messiness and brokenness our team had, never once did i want to put into action feelings of dissatisfaction and disgruntled-ness. or through messy relationships & a more than exuberant youth group,…  somehow, God was gracious enough  to show me beyond the mess into something beautiful.
when will i learn what it means to love despite unloving people? when will i see that love is not even unconditional, but conditional on the fact that those i (struggle to) serve have also been recipients of blood spilled by the lamb?

sigh. i keep thinking back to a brother’s story of a conference he went to,… of how when there was conflict, the worship team leader once stopped in mid-song and confessed he couldn’t keep worshipping when he knew the body of christ had been broken as such.

i look at my school and,… am, remain, very doubtful that something like that could ever happen.