Breaking New Spiritual Ground

Acts 5:15-16
“As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them he pass by. Crowds gathered also from towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed.”

Peter was so filled with the Holy Spirit that wherever he walked, he claimed new spiritual territory. If Peter’s shadow fell onto anyone, it brought healing!

Although my shadow didn’t do a whole lot of healing, I felt that the Holy Spirit was claiming new areas of campus as I went into Theta Chi.

I met with two students over dinner to cast more vision about Greek InterVarsity through Luke 15 – The Parable of the Lost Sheep. Through this we see the  shepherd leaving 99 of his sheep in the open country to find the 1 lost sheep. Once he finds this sheep, there is joy that everyone hears about and everyone is invited to come celebrate. Through this, we see that Greek InterVarsity is all about leaving the places where we may feel the most comfortable to be incarnational and bold with others in hopes that we can rejoice when Greek students discover the love of Christ.

Ryan Theta Chi

After we finished dinner, I walked back with a Theta Chi named Ryan Fritz. Ryan is a Theta Chi that the Lord introduced me to on a prayer walk. I asked Ryan if we could hang out at Theta Chi before we ended the night. What happened next was awesome.

Ryan began to introduce to me to several of his Fraternity Brothers. After he introduced me, he would proceed to tell his Brothers all about Greek InterVarsity and that we were going to start holding a weekly bible study at their house in the Fall. He would then gauge his brother’s interest levels by extending an invite to join us when we start. Praise God! Not only is Ryan excited to have a bible study at the house, we noticed that some of the Brothers seemed very open to the idea of participating in spiritual conversations.

As we continued to walk around the house, I felt this sense of a spiritual authority that was to come. I saw the chapter room and I immediately had this vision of seeing Greek students having a bible study in this room! (only cleaned a little bit).

Pray that the Holy Spirit will move through Theta Chi and pray for Ryan, who is excited to learn more about having spiritual conversation with his Brothers and to have a study in his house!

Not only that, but once I returned home, I got a text message from the other student I took out to dinner, Kim Dabrowski. Kim is an ADPi and expressed that has been very excited to learn how to have spiritual conversation with her sorority sisters. Kim sent me a text that read,

Kim ADPi

“Hey! On my way back to adpi I ran into one of my sisters and we got to talking about faith! God is working already, crazy stuff :)”

Please continue to pray for students like Ryan and Kim who are excited to see the Joe and Jane Greeks be reached. Pray that the presence of the Holy Spirit will be with them as they continue to be bold and reach out to their Fraternity Brothers and Sisters!

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Fishers of Greeks

ImageLast week, I took 3 students out to dinner to cast vision on Greek IV. Each one of these students is answered prayer to God’s confirmation at UCLA! Even during the slowest time on campus, God has brought these students together because they desire to learn more about who God is and how they can share about his greatness.

The dinner started by simply hanging out and having a good time and slowly transitioned into sharing more vision about Greek InterVarsity and giving the students an opportunity to see that there are other Greeks that desire to see this happen at UCLA.

We started to talk about having spiritual conversations with other Greeks and opening a space for bible studies within the houses. I got to share awesome stories about Greeks at SDSU and all over who have been impacted by the love of Christ through Greek IV.

After sharing this, I asked them if they would be willing to host witnessing communities in their house. With excitement and reluctance they said “Yes, but we’re not sure how.”

I was immediately reminded of Mark 1 where Jesus calls his first disciples. As he was walking by the sea of Galilee, he called out to Simon and Andrew, two fishermen whose life was dedicated to catching fish. Jesus called out to them and said “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”

Immediately, Andrew and Simon dropped their nets. They knew nothing but all they knew was there was something so compelling about Jesus, they wanted to follow him and leave their lives behind. Jesus did not pick the most qualified Rabbis or the prestigious citizens of Judea, he chose fishermen and he immediately invited them into mission.

While the Greeks I met with were no fishermen, they have the heart and the desire to share about God’s faithfulness and that is enough. These students remind me of the soft heart and faith one needs to be used by the Holy Spirit.

We have agreed to meet weekly so I can train, develop, equip and empower these students to see what gifts the Lord has blessed them with and how to use them!

Praise God! Please be praying for our meetings together. I realize that I am by no means qualified to do this work, but humbled that the Lord would choose me and reveal his glory with my weakness.

Sorority Momentum

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Alpha Delta Pi @ UCLA

After hanging out with some of the Betas, I asked them if they knew anyone in the Greek System who would be interested in being a part of Greek InterVarsity. One Beta said that he had someone in mind. He made a quick phone call and said, “We’re doing this Greek IV thing, want to find out some more info?” The answer was a quick yes. Beau and I met with a Sorority Member from Alpha Delta Pi (ADP) and after sharing with her what we are doing with Greek InterVarsity she said, “I’m nervous and exciting and I think it’ll be a good stretch for me.” We also asked her if she knew of anyone in her house that would be interesting in having spiritual discussions and she said she could think of 2 that would more than likely be interested.

Praise God! We are gaining momentum and we are praying that we can capture this momentum as well. Although I have no idea where this is going to go, I’m praying that God will reveal more of what he wants to do with these students as time goes on.

Please continue to pray for me as I will be hosting a dinner for all of the people I’ve met with this summer to show them there are more people wanting to be involved with Greek Ministry and to share vision together!

Ballin’ with the Betas

ImageDuring summer at UCLA, the campus is saturated with international students, Sorority girls move out the houses and Fraternities rent out some of their empty rooms to students of all types. With the slow movement over summer, I wasn’t quite sure what type of things I would see on campus, but God has been affirming the call of why I am at UCLA. The Holy Spirit has been speaking through me and God has been highlighting students for me to speak to. Here is a recap of my first month at UCLA:

I had a mixture of emotions for my first prayer walk. I was expecting the Lord to reveal what He had for me but I was extremely nervous and afraid being in this brand new place. To begin my prayer walk, I walked around campus praying for God to give me courage to start a conversation and I eventually started a conversation with a random student that God pointed out to me. We talked as he welcomed me to ask him questions about UCLA while he traveled to his next class, which was on the opposite end of campus. That conversation didn’t really lead me to much except for a corner on campus that I was completely unfamiliar with. Asking the Lord to lead me into another conversation, I saw a student sitting on a bench with a “Go Greek” shirt.

I walked up to him to spark the Greek connection and we had a great conversation. Though he had no interest in Greek InterVarsity, he felt comfortable enough to give me the number of the chapter president of his Fraternity, Lambda Chi Alpha. I praised God to have received my first Greek contact at UCLA!

Encouraged, I walked home, praising the Lord and asking him to bless the phone call I would have with the chapter president. As I was preparing to call him, I received a text message from another Greek student from Beta (Beta Theta Pi) asking if we could meet within the next hour. I immediately said yes and he shared with me that he’s wanted to talk to someone about what it means to be Greek and Christian a very long time.

We had an hour and a half long conversation and after, he said that he wanted to join me on my bi-weekly prayer walks. I told him that I wanted to start hanging out with his Brothers more so we planned a pick-up basketball game that same week.

This is where it was 100% evident that the HolyImage Spirit was working.

The Beta student, myself and another IV Staff went over to the Beta house to play a game of basketball where I met one of his Fraternity Brothers who wanted to play with us. After playing a bunch of 2 on 2, I commented on his Habitat for Humanity shirt and asked him some questions. Turns out he has a very soft heart towards spiritual conversations. I told him that I’m with Greek IV sharing with students what it means to be Greek and Christian and he told me that his parents come from a Muslim background. After sharing with him how I had a Buddhist mother and an Agnostic Father, he opened up to hear about my story and agreed to meet with me next week to start talking about God!!

In fact, my meeting with him went so well, he wanted to get together every week to talk about God! Praise the Lord!

We literally had our first bible study with him this past Wednesday in which he very positively responded to and is excited to meet every week.

All of this started because of a random conversation I had with a student on campus. Praise God and please pray for him to continue this work! I’m meeting with a Sorority member from Alpha Delta Pi. Please pray for the Lord to give me the words He wants me to speak and give Him the glory!

Paul’s Leadership

I am currently manuscripting through the book of Philippians and I couldn’t help but write about Paul’s leadership, the caliber of his soul and the selflessness towards the Gospel.

(Taken out of Philippians 1:12-19)

Through Paul’s imprisonment, he writes, “As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.”

How easy is it for people to write off putting their Christian face on because they are nervous about how unbelievers will perceive them? How easy is it for us not to do something out of the norm or something that is viewed as radical because we don’t want to “turn people off”.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about contextualizing spiritual conversations, but are there times where we over-contextualize?

I’m not Paul and I’ve never been imprisoned for preaching the Gospel but where he sees a win, I might naturally see a loss. I might not see my persecution as a joy because other people know I was arrested for being Christian. If that is the bare minimum of what we ought to rejoice in, it removes gigantic barriers on the many ways I limit many convictions.

Paul knows that although they heavily persecute him, there is a chance that a tiny seed is sown in their hearts specifically for his chains. Where some may worry about whether they are having a negative impact or positive impact on a non-believers spiritual spectrum, Paul doesn’t seem to care–in fact he’s absolutely fearless about it.

He also says to the church of Phillipi that people are emboldened to preach because he has been fearlessly modeled how far he would be willing to go for the name of Christ to spread.

Again, I will say that I’m no Paul but I have to ask the question, if I were put into a life and death situation for my faith, would I be as fearless to the consequences, or even see them as beneficiary to the Kingdom, as Paul does?

Yikes. Gives you something to pray about, huh?

Paul continues to say that some peach out of envy and rivalry. Paul knows that many people would hate on him or try to discredit what he did to exalt themselves. Many people were envious of the success that Paul had in his ministry. Paul says that people would “stir up trouble” for him while he is in chains.

Paul’s response:

“But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice…”

It seems that Paul says that he will rejoice and reminds them again as if it is a surprise that someone would react in this way–and it is!

Paul displays his humble, selfless heart for the Gospel and for others to be transformed in a way where they display action for the Good News.

If there is a thief that decides to stop stealing but has the desire to continue to steal, will I condemn him? Absolutely not–whether the motive is impure the action leads to transformation.

I don’t believe that good deeds done out of poor or insincere motives render the deed useless or fake when in fact the action, or mission, may purge or combat impure habits.

We ought to act in a way that pleases God whether we are doing this out of sincere hearts are not.

Paul shows he is willing to go all out for the sake of Gospel, truly see the way God redeems every horrible situation and maintain a humble, selfless heart with no need to defend himself from critical remarks.

Praise God for this example Paul has set before us.