Tuesday, March 9, 2010
A Growing Community
"...taking root downward..."
Winter break is officially over and we are now entering into mid-terms! Over the break we had been praying that the Lord would continue to knit our hearts with the students’ hearts and that He would reconnect us with those students in a way that fosters community this semester. We have already begun to see the fruits of those prayers on the campus! We are blessed to see the Lord bring women and men who desire to know Him and His word, and to be engaged in a community with one another on a regular basis. On the men’s side of things, we have seen God put together a men’s Bible study that meets during the week, which is looking to encourage one another to true, Biblical manhood. We are diving deep into our lives in order to “...spur one another on toward love and good deed…”, and to hold one another accountable to studying God’s Word and engaging with our non-Christian friends about Jesus. We are excited about the transformation that the Lord will do through this study!
God has blessed the women in the ministry with a real sense of community with one another. There are 2 women’s bible studies that happen during the week, each one unique in the way that the women relate to each other and to God’s Word. Valerie is helping to train 2 of the women in the studies to lead women of their own toward Christ and on to maturity in Him and His Word. She is also discipling 2 others in a deeper, more intimate way. It has been so encouraging to see the women become friends with each other and to seek to include other women in their lives and in the studies!
The Lord has blessed me with being able to disciple 2 men this year. Each of them are a gift from the Lord and I enjoy every minute that I spend with them. Both of them are at different stages of spiritual maturity and it is a challenge to help both of them to continue to grow in Christ, to deepen their habit of spending time in His word, and to talk to others about Him.
Another encouraging aspect of this growing community of students is that once a week we gather on campus to have lunch with each other. This is a really unique opportunity for the students (and us as staff) to relate to one another and to others around us in a very relaxed, natural way. It has become a huge success, and we are praying that the Lord will use this time to draw others to Himself through this little lunch community.
Isaiah 31:31 "The surviving remnant of the house of Judah will again take root downward and bear fruit upward."
“…bearing fruit upward”
Not only do we have a group of students who are beginning to really enjoy being in a community with one another and who are setting habits of studying and applying God's Word into their life, but we are rejoicing that the Lord is growing His ministry here in natural ways!
As I look back over our time at SDSU, I can see how the Lord has answered so many prayers and petitions so faithfully. Often times it seems as though you can't see the impact the Lord is allowing you to make in people's lives until you sit back and reflect over what He has done over time. We have seen a woman's ministry grow by leaps and bounds, with several different Bible studies happening on the campus with women who are committed to one another as they are committed to Christ and His Word. We have seen the men's ministry grow from nothing to having a solid core group of men who are also committed to knowing Christ and making Him known on the campus!
It is so humbling to be is such close quarters with the work that the Lord is doing in each of these student's lives, and it makes us so grateful for having the privilege of being able to give our lives away for the sake of the Gospel with these students!