Monday, November 2, 2015

November 2015 Update

One of the cooler elements of ROC’s location at 50 South Court Street in Athens is the view that God has blessed us with. Not only is the intersection of Court and Union a hub of activity, but we also have an amazing view of one of the most picturesque locations on campus. The past few days I have taken the opportunity to appreciate just how spectacular this view really is as God demonstrates his creative beauty through the change of seasons. What seems even more amazing to me is the fact that the change in color that we associate with this time of year has seemingly happened in just a few short days.

This reminds me of how quickly God can work to make a change in our lives. While clearly Christ continues to work throughout our entire lives to change us, sometimes dramatic change can happen in a relatively short amount of time. 

One of the challenges I’ve encountered in my time at ROC is trying to figure out how to make the best use of the relatively short amount of time that we have with students. (In most cases 3-4 years at best). What I’ve learned, however, is that if we allow God to handle the dramatic change, it frees us up to help equip students with the tools and skills to pursue Him passionately the rest of their lives.

Acts chapter 9 records the story of Saul’s conversion on the road to Damascus. In the account of his conversion Saul comes into contact with Jesus and this becomes the catalyst for the major change that occurs in his life following the encounter. But as we continue to read we see that God places other people in Saul’s life at just the right time. Ananias is one of these people. He is sent to Saul to tell him of his new mission. While it was God that worked to make the change in Saul’s life, God used Ananias to play a major role in preparing Saul (later to become the Apostle Paul) for ministry. While Ananias only spent a short time with Paul, his role was nonetheless vital.

ROC sharing a meal with our friends from
Middleport Church of Christ during Crosswalk
At Reach Out on Campus, I see our role as similar to that of Ananias’. God has directed us and placed us in the lives of students at a very specific and crucial time. While it’s definitely not the ROC staff or volunteers that affect the change (that’s still the work of God and His Holy Spirit), we get the opportunity to be able to enter into a student’s life at a very exciting time and help prepare them and point them toward the mission that God is calling him / her. Like Ananias, we don’t always get to spend a great deal of time with them, but God often does amazing things through our faithful efforts in the time that we do have with them. 

Speaking of making the most of the time we have. As I write these words, we really only have about 5 weeks left in the semester, including Thanksgiving break and finals week. Even so, we have plenty of things going on. This Wednesday, October 28th, Donna and Al Hartson from Team Expansion in Louisville, KY will be leading Crosswalk and talking about reaching unreached people groups with the message of the Gospel. November 14th ROC students will be spending a day serving with Lifeline Christian Mission in Columbus, Ohio. November 15th and December 6th we will be visiting local churches. So, as you can see, even with time in the semester winding down, we certainly haven’t slowed down.

In closing, please know how much the staff, volunteers, and students appreciate your prayers and support. Our ministry partners really are the lifeblood of ROC. Thank you for giving us the ability to impact lives for our King!
In Christ,