In a recent membership class (Discovery Class), I was sharing about UBC’s vision to reach college students with particular enthusiasm for the construction I see out my window daily of a fairly significant student housing project.
In my enthusiasm, I channeled the ole hood I grew up in and said, “We’ve got students all up in our missional grill.” Now, for those not acclimated to such colloquialisms it simply means that students are in our face and we need to choose to see the opportunity as nothing less than missional.
This year, UBC celebrates 60 years on this hill. There have been times of reaping, harvesting, blessing, and difficulty. The church has gone through changes to more deeply understand that her identity is not in brick in mortar, or a street address. I often tell church planters to be prepared for the day they put up a mailbox. Things change. Our tendency is to overly identify with buildings and, oddly enough, cease to identify with the community where that building resides.
UBC is a church for university students. We should leverage our resources, goods, even our livelihoods to reach students. We need the blessed inconvenience of housing international students in our homes. We need to consider selling our homes and moving downtown into one of these new complexes. At the least we should (must) pray. Every time you see construction or are inconvenienced with parking, we need to pray for students and our willingness to be laborers in field of this campus.
For any of you not in our midst, but connected to UBC. Pray for us. Pray that we remain staunch in our proclamation of truth and consistent in our application of truth. Pray that we stay simple and focused on why we are here. Pray that God would raise up an army of church members, including college students, to see faculty and students from spiritual eyes. Pray with me, as well, that out of the sea of believing students, God would raise up and call out young men to be pastors and that UBC would be positioned in every way to train them up. Perhaps, by God’s grace, I will help raise up my replacement in His time.
From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
(2 Corinthians 5:16-21 ESV)