They're not all home runs

For every great story that comes out of a ministry, there are probably twice as many dead-ends. A few weeks ago we finally launched a ministry at WSU-Vancouver, with four students showing up.

In the first week we spent the whole time showing them what we are all about - planting ministries of prayer, evangelism, discipleship, and sending on every campus in Portland, and training and equipping students to lead those ministries.

As we met with these four students, we began teaching them about the ministry of the Holy Spirit. It is my opinion, and the opinion of countless Campus Crusade staff before me, that this is the single most important doctrinal concept to understand and apply: that God has sent his Spirit to live in us and give us the power and ability to live a life in his will and to live a life that brings glory to him. What better news is there?

Anyway, the students were less than excited to go over this material. They had heard it before, although I am not sure if they understood it or not. But it is standard training that we would give to any student that would desire to lead one of our groups. Today I received this email:

"I have been praying and thinking about our discussion and CCC in general on campus over the past few days and wanted to let you know what I think. It seems I did not realize exactly how campus crusade interacted with clubs on campus as was obvious in our discussion on Monday. I understand that as a organization you want to have things structured the way you do, and I do not disagree morally with that style. Unfortunately it is not really the style I imagined for our club on campus and so I am going to have to split paths with you guys."

It seems that they were looking more for a "fellowship" on campus. Campus Crusade is looking to build a "missional community" there. Once they saw what we were asking, they apparently decided they did not have the time nor desire to commit to it.

And that is OK. When starting a ministry, nothing is more important than finding the right people, people who are aligned to the vision you are casting. Had we continued with these students, I believe all of us, staff and students, would have been frustrated at some point in the future.

I am encouraging them to go ahead and start the kind of group on campus that they were hoping we'd be. If they have a specific vision, maybe God will use them too. In the meantime, we are going to continue seeking other students who are on board with the missional community model of ministry.

Your prayers are appreciated.


Will said...

Yeah, I know that ministry is a tough job. I once got booed off the stage at the Vancouver Campus Crusade Conference talent show.

- Will Pulgarin

Christina said...

adam, what an encouragement to read this blog. sometimes i get the feeling being in leadership on my campus that the staff believes that the "crusade" way is the only "right" way. I know that thats not true, but to hear it out of a staff member I respect so much is truly uplifting. granted, it is my hope that whether or not these students have the passion to share the gospel, they will recognize the importance... but for your willingness not to push it: Praise the Lord!
-Christina George