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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

To College Students, RE Missions

(Students can skip to the bold text.)

Quick update:
I have been sick this month for about two weeks. I was able to make it to some meetings and a wedding, but I spent a lot of time in bed. This is strange because I rarely get sick enough to stay in bed... ever. The last time that happened I think was the Spring of 2009, when some wonderful dishcrew people brought food up to my Culby 4 dorm room (thanks, Diego!) and my wonderful girlfriend got me a can of soup. Ok, so she wasn't my girlfriend yet--I actually asked her out on our first date on our way back from taking me to the urgent care center (full disclosure here--not my brightest moment). (she said yes, and ended up marrying me, so I must have done something right later on!)

But I digress.

We're full steam back to raising our support now (support raising doesn't get much attention when you have a 102 fever). We've reached the point where might just know enough people to reach our full budget now. We're waiting to hear from 4 churches  and a handful of individuals, but  this MIGHT be it. I don't mean to get your hopes up too high, but mine are right now, so you can come up here with me. (Although half of the churches we've been waiting to hear back from for over a year now, so no guarantees--see the last post for insight on why churches take longer).

This brings me to a shameless plug for missions. Well, more shameless than usual. I wish to inquire of you--what are YOU doing about missions? To reference Piper, one of my favorite Bible teachers, there are 3 options for the believer: Go, Give, or Disobey. So which are you involved in? (as a side note, I would argue that those who go should still give, and those who don't go should give more).

First off, while they can be helpful and stretching, short term trips don't count as "going". You don't get off the hook because you went on a two or three week missions trip last summer. Sorry. Jesus models incarnational ministry, and the way the gospel has spread throughout the world in the last 2000 years has been through long term missionaries. Ask yourself, do you want to be involved in the advancement of the Gospel of Jesus Christ across the world? Or is a cross cultural vacation with a little ministry thrown in enough to fulfill your part in the great commission? This is seriously exciting stuff here. Don't short change yourself. 

I want to write particularly to college students, although I think all of my friends have graduated now (feeling old here). So if you're not a college student, pass it on to one! (facebook works well)

In my experience college students are known for two things: being poor, and being immature. The first is almost always true, the second, only half the time. But I believe students hold the future of global Gospel advancement in their hands. In the going, but especially in the giving. 

There is lacking in students a fear that grips most after graduation. The fear associated with money. When I was a Junior at Moody, a non-traditional student, a close friend, was going into missions. When he approached me about supporting him, my first thought was--you're crazy. I barely make my payments, and beside still I need to have fun. But I let him speak. "Even those in college can give $5 or $10 a month, and after all, we're all called to play a part"

Something clicked inside of me and I started supporting him at $50 a month. And it was the most exciting thing I was doing. I was working an extra 5-7 hours a month to do it, but it really helped put money in it's rightful place: a tool, not a god. We are not to be controlled by money--we can serve God or money, and not both. Jesus made that clear. I'm sure that if every Christ-following college student gave $10/mo to missions, not only would missions be SO much better funded, but incredibly valuable lessons would be learned early on. Lessons of commitment, the infinite importance of the gospel, generosity, and the sheer joy that is found in giving sacrificially. 

If you are a student reading this right now, I challenge you to find an long term missionary, and get involved with your cash. This is where it hits home for so many people, and trust me, it only gets harder to give once you graduate. Giving sacrificially will bring you closer to Christ in a way that you won't know until you try. What do you want your life to be about? Put your money where your mouth is. Put your life where true security is found--in fearless faith of His mighty provision.


How do you start? The easiest way is to find someone you know, or someone your church supports. Write that person, and tell them you'd like to start supporting them. Find a dollar amount that makes you a bit uncomfortable--start with that. You know then that when you give up a venti mocha for a tall, or a tall for a water, you are involved in life, changing gospel advancing, Christ revering work. And it will be credited by God to your account (Phil 4). Realize that this is a commitment and these people are depending on you to follow through. Stay in touch with your missionary, communicate, pray, give. Maybe one day even go to see what The Lord is doing. Ask The Lord how else he can use you. Trust me, He has his ways.


Jonathan and Maggie Hunter are missionaries with ReachGlobal raising support to minister to Middle and High school students in Costa Rica.

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