Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Catching the Vision

So, last week Valerie and I were at the Navigator's HQ at Glen Eyrie in Colorado Springs, CO to talk to students from all over the nation about what they will be doing after they graduate from college. The event was called EDGE Preview and the main reason for the conference was to inform students about what it is like being on EDGE Corp staff with the Navigators. Valerie and I had gone to this before we were students in '06, and it was a major blessing for us to be able to process how we felt God was leading us as we looked to graduate at the end of that year.

This time we were here as staff who have gone through almost 2 years of EDGE Corp and were excited to talk to students and help them to discern how God was leading THEM as they looked to graduate! To be able to speak into a student's life at such a vulnerable and uncertain time as this was thrilling as well as encouraging!

Valerie and I had many great, meaningful conversations while we were there. There were 200+ students that attended the Preview in January, almost an even split of 100 guys and 100 girls. There were about 7 EDGE Corp men to meet with 100 guy students and about the same for the girls side of things. The goal was that every student who comes to the Preview get at least one good conversation with at least 1 full-time EDGE person. So you can tell that it was going to be a very intense couple of days for us staff. But it was worth it!

The thing that I saw that had the biggest impact on the students was not the information about EDGE Corp or the Navigators, but the vision that was cast about making disciples for a life time.

Matthew 28:19,20 says "Therefore go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you. And lo, I am with you always, even to the very end of the age."

This verse is very explicit about what all believers are to be doing with their lives: making disciples. So that is really what this 2 day conference was about, how to be intentional about making disciples after graduating from college.

The students heard from many different Navigator leaders about what this can look like after college and of all the different opportunities to serve with the Navigators after college that doesn't have to look like full-time ministry on a campus somewhere.

For me, this was not just a time to meet new students and engage them in conversation, but was also a time for me to catch up with some friends that I hadn't seen in months. One of my favorite times was just walking and talking with my friend Brad. I hadn't seen him in quite a while, so I was itching to get some one-on-one time with him and hear about what God has been doing in his life. It was so encouraging as I listened to him to see how he has been living out the Matthew 28 command to make disciples where he was at in life! He isn't a full-time ministry worker, but just a normal 9-5 worker who is making disciples of Jesus even at work! That is what it looks like to live out our command to make disciples!

Another thing that I felt was really impactful was when the students looked at the Navigator calling statement which says:

To advance the gospel of Jesus and His kingdom into the nations, through spiritual generations of laborers, living and discipling among the lost.

They were challenged to think about how they can be doing this now while in college and what practical steps they can take to make sure that they are doing this even after they graduate.

All in all, the conference was a success. We were not recruiting to the Navigators, but to the vision of a life time of laboring to make disciples of Jesus right where they are at in the normal pathways of life!

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