Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Mosaic: Ethnic Demographics of the Campus Ministry

I am in South Carolina this week for National Leadership meetings involving the Campus Ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ, Christian Leadership Ministry (Faculty Ministry) and Student Venture (High School Ministry.) Yesterday, we had a luncheone for the leaders of Ethnic Student Ministries. A startling (and encouraging) fact emerged -- the first time we had ever recognized this reality:

13015 students and delegates attended CCC winter conferences.
4492 attended ethnic or international student conferences.
That is, 1/3 of all attendees!

Do you know what the current demographics are for all students in US?
1/3 are Ethnic. (5,471,471 of 16,611,711)

The Campus Ministry's now reflects the demographics of the general student population! Praise God!

Friday, February 23, 2007

From the Lab - Soularium

The requests for Soularium are pouring in - after a very succesful field test. We are only days from it becoming available. (Check the early blog for an intro to Soularium )

Here is Tanya's, the project leader, update to one request...

The final version of Soularium (refined after the prototype version used in the field test to include adjusted questions and additional instructions) returns from the printers Friday. After the final assembly we hope to have it available for purchase on the CruPress website by March 7th. Soularium will also have a companion website for entering and viewing people's responses to the images from around the country which is in its final development now. We appreciate you patience and covet your prayers as we wrap up the final pieces of Soularium. As you can imagine, unavoidable delays sometimes just happen, no matter how eager we are to see Soularium completed. Please pray that the rest of the process goes smoothly so we can get it in your hands soon, perhaps even ahead of schedule.

CoJourner Equipping - Making a difference?

After CoJourner equipping sessions, I am generally very encouraged with the initial feedback. People seem to like it and think it will be helpful. But, let's be honest. When it comes to evangelism, there is generally more good intentions than actual action. So when you (no I) do a seminar and move on, what really happens? Does it make a difference?

Well, this week I started a new five week CoJourner seminar series with individuals working at CCC headquarters. After a very good introductory session (from my point of view), two different individuals came up to share stories with me. Both had been in previous CoJourner sessions in different contexts. Both had stories to tell of how they saw God open doors for them to witness as a result. One was with a neighbor who has now begun to attend church after years of uninvolvment. (That's progress in the right direction.) The other was with a postman. Here is a snippet of the story, sent to me afterwards...
Well, as I ended up taking a few different trips to the post office to mail the books out to the entirety of my ministry team, each time God had a conversation waiting there or me. Because I had a number of books I was mailing each time, I probably spent about 20 minutes with each postman as he printed off each individual postage label. What better time than the present to strike up a conversation. With each conversation there was a natural opportunity to share what exactly it was that I was mailing, because how many people walk into the post office to mail the exact same thing to 35 - 40 of their closest friends! The first two conversations I had were definitely seed planting conversations; they listened and maybe asked a question or two, but then the conversation moved on to other things. The third opportunity took me a bit off guard… As I was chatting with postman Mike, he asked me about what I was mailing and I shared my story. His next words caught me by surprise… he wanted to know if I had a book that he could have since this was such a great story! I wasn’t prepared with a book on hand, but ended up bringing him one back the following week. Since then I have been back to the post office once and happened to see Mike. He mentioned that he’s only read a chapter or two. Please pray for Mike, as he his obviously seeking God, whether he knows it or not!
It's encouraging to hear how God continues to use CoJourner's to spur believers on in engaging in other's spiritual journeys.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

CoJourners Now On-line

CoJourners just went on-line with a new site, thanks to my good friend and coworker, Rick. Check out the new look and current offerings at:

Monday, February 19, 2007

CoJourner Encouragement

OK, here is a little (no a lot of) encouragement re: CoJourners. Last month, I did a CoJourner training in a local church in Nebraska. Here is an e-mail I received last night...

I just wanted to write and thank you for coming and teaching that day. It was so helpful to me! I've been to other seminars on sharing the Gospel, but this was the best. I especially liked the tips on listening -- and asking permission to ask another question. You gave me specific ideas and guidelines that I believe God will allow me to use. I have my prayer list, I'm going through the devotional, and I'm praying for the opportunities, expecting to see God work. How exciting!

Thank you, and God bless you and your family in this great ministry he has given you. I was blessed and encouraged by the teaching, and I'll let you know about the resulting fruit. Deb

Isn't it exciting when God works, using his grace-gifts to equip his people for works of service (Eph. 4:11, 12)?

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Persecution - A Morning Reflection

Here’s a reflection bound to make you uncomfortable (or at least it has me):

The last few morning’s, I’ve been ruminating on Jesus’ interaction with the so-called “rich young man” and the subsequent discussion with his followers (find it in Mark 10:17-31). The passage is rich, overflowing with more insights and implications than I care to write here (or that you would want to read here.) In the end, Jesus promises three things to all who truly leave all to follow him. Followers can expect:

  1. A hundred times more of all they left now in this time
  2. Persecution now in this time
  3. Eternal life in the age to come

It is #2 that has my attention at the moment.

Why are Christ-followers persecuted?

To start with, let me be honest. My experience of persecution has been so light, that should all the persecuted be set in a line—most persecuted at the front, least in the back—I am quite concerned that I would find myself close to the end of the line. So for me to comment on persecution is like a sportswriter who played little league critiquing the skills of major league baseball stars. But ultimately this is a reflection about me. And Jesus’ words are meant to rework our mental models, and thus transform our very beings (Romans 12:2), so here goes.

  • As Sovereign Creator, God is the Sovereign Ruler of all people.
  • The evil that infects us has produced a humanity operating in willful rebellion to God.
  • Humanity is resistant to any challenge to this present order, if the challenge threatens personal status, power or property resulting from this present state.
  • Therefore any attempts to restore proper order (i.e. return to God’s rule) are met with hostile resistance.

This was true of the prophets in the Old Testament. This was true of the apostles in the New Testament. This has been true of the missionaries and messengers through the centuries.

So, if it is not true for us, here at this time, I must ask why? Is it because we live in a setting no longer in active rebellion, therefore there is no one being threatened? (The answer is “No”.) Or is it that we pose no serious threat to the present rebellious order, thus we are ignored?

Hmm… Just wondering? (I wonder how my reflection compares with actual historical evidence. Where is that article on "persecution" from the New Bible Dictionary? Ah, interesting. I must read more on this.)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

CoJourner Videos

OK, this is cool. This is really cool. This morning I received an e-mail from Chris, a CCC staff member from Ohio University. They have been doing CoJourner training with their students. So to bring a media mix into their sessions, they shot four videos. Check these out – they are about 4-7 minutes long each.

One gets to the heart of the matter: motivation

Two focus in on the all important role of the Explorer

One that overviews the other three roles: Guide, Builder, and Mentor

These could be valuable for you—either for your own encouragement or possibly as you equip others in the valuable skills of being a spiritual CoJourner. If so, you might try contacting Chris (is that OK, Chris?)…


Thursday, February 8, 2007

Super Bowl Ad Follow-up

I posted last Friday re: the Super Bowl ad - Beyond the Ultimate. Here are the results of what can be measured, knowing that only eternity will reveal the true impact of the initiative:

Let me know what you think. How do these numbers appear to you?
[Thanks, Angie, for making this metrics available to us.]

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Then & Now -The Measure of a Ministry

Time tests the fruit of our efforts. True success in ministry is measured less by what is happening today, and more in what is happening five, ten, even twenty years from now because of what we do today.

I was reminded of that on Friday when I received an e-mail from Jeff. He wrote:

Last night I spoke at the UNL CCC weekly meeting. That was a joy as well to share a bit of the journey. Their launching some evangelistic efforts and I spoke from Romans 10 encouraging them to just take the next step. I told them about the FIRST time I shared my faith—when you took with you on an appt to the Sig Ep house and I was absolutely scared to death! Then I shared how that first step has led to so many others including all that God is letting me be a part of in India today. Thanks for challenging ME to step out way back then! I so appreciate you friend.

Jeff is a pastor for administration and outreach in largest church in his city. But what is more exciting (to me) is that he has been the catalyst for an amazing church planting movement in India. Take a glance at their website and then think back to the significance of the of our time together, taking the first steps of outreach in a fraternity house:

Makes you want to keep investing in the lives of young Christ-followers, doesn't it?

Sunday, February 4, 2007

CoJourner - What's in a Name?

So you’re wondering where the name CoJourner came from? Here is a little (personal) history lesson.

In 2002, the top strategic priority for Campus Crusade for Christ’s national evangelism efforts (that is, for the US campus ministry) was student evangelism. What had become apparent to me was that students didn’t like the way we talked about evangelism (and I don’t blame them.) Our training was very “how-to” oriented, which left one with the (mistaken) impression that evangelism was primary what I did and how I did it, rather than what God was doing and how I become a part of it.

After a bunch of research looking at various evangelism models and paradigms, I hadn’t found much that I thought fit the US college student. While on a personal writing retreat (back in Nebraska, a state whose welcome sign rightly identifies it with “The Good Life”), I began to consider the options. A lot of the literature used the biblical analogy of sowing and reaping (often adding other elements like cultivating, even keeping.) This, of course, is biblically sound and can be effective. The only problem is that most of our students aren’t agricultural and none are ancient. Today’s farmers use tractors, planters and combines. (Hmm…not quite the same picture as sowers and reapers.)

So I began to wonder if there was an equally biblical analogy for evangelism that would resonate with the hearts of today’s students. My mind locked onto (I trust with divine inspiration) the idea of spiritual journey. What if you thought of evangelism through the lens of spiritual journey?

Creative juices began to flow and I wrote the first prototype of a training session – one that I would use in a local church a couple of weeks later. I didn’t know what to call it at the time, so I used the title “Traveling Together.” It was later that fall, after the four roles had crystallized (Explorer, Guide, Builder and Mentor) that I realized, English doesn’t have a good word for traveling together (companion maybe be the best, not but a great title for evangelism equipping.) But what if you combined the prefix “co” (together or with) and with the root for journey—“CoJourner”? Hmm… It worked for me. Others seemed to resonate (though one of my sons still hates it.) After trying it out among student groups, it caught on. In fact, one campus bought the domain name to use for their local group before I ever got around to it.

Now you know the rest of the story. Stay tuned. In a few weeks a new CoJourner website will go live where you can get the ever-expanding and improving family of resources.

Friday, February 2, 2007

Super Bowl Ad - Must See

Check out the last page of this weekend's USA Today's special Super Bowl section. The powerful witness of two Christ-following coaches. If you prefer to save your 75 cents, than check out my friend and co-workers blog...

Or go to:

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Spiritual Journeys: God Orchestrating Details (Again)

I boarded the San Antonio-Dallas flight, leaving our meetings a half-day early (the product of a communication mix-up.) I greeted the fellow traveler settled into the window seat, discovering him to be quite conversational (at least for a 7:00 am flight.) A meteorology professor from a university in the mid-south, Brian’s research specialty is hurricanes. There was immediate common ground—we had three hurricanes pay us a visit in the summer/fall of 2004 and had spent fall break 2005 helping with Katrina clean-up. After a delightful discussion of emergent insights into the field of hurricane prediction, the conversation turned to my world and ministry, and thus spiritual things.

[CoJourner - EXPLORER]
I showed Brian our project - Soularium: A Dialogue in Images (see He shared openly his thoughts on life, God and spiritual life. His wife was enjoying their current church affiliation, but for him it was less satisfying. Nor did he have any significant connection with like-minded professors at his university.

[CoJourner - GUIDE]
I shared with him about CLM ( and said I could help get him in contact with this faculty ministry. But I also asked if I could show him Satisfied?, an outline I wrote with Dr. Bill Bright to help others understand and experience God’s gift of his Holy Spirit. (For a flash version, see: We were half way through it as we landed in Dallas, so I offered to buy him a cup of coffee in the airport to finish. He readily accepted the offer. But after we deplaned, he declined the coffee (he doesn’t ever drink it), and said he only agreed because he wanted to be able to finish our discussion. So we sat down and completed the outline. It was a delightful discussion and as Brian reflected on his response, he appeared at the threshold of decision. He understood the need to surrender control of his life to the Lord and I am confident will continue to reflect on those possibilities.

[CoJourner – MENTOR]
I am now contacting Rick, my good friend and CLM National Director, to see if we can help make a connection for Brian with others who can encourage him in his spiritual journey.

As we finished, Brian said, “Now I know why I got iced into San Antonio. I was supposed to fly out on Wednesday.” “I was supposed to be in a meeting this morning and on a flight later today myself,” I replied. “I guess all things happen for a purpose,” he concluded. Indeed, God, the Master Designer, was orchestrating the intersections of spiritual journeys once again.