Returned

I have returned from a long month of traveling. I’ve been all over the place. 3 different cities in northern China with very different local cultures, briefly in the San Jose for a bewildering jet lagged new years, St. Louis for Staff Conference ’08 for Intervarsity staff, then stuck in dallas for a few hours which seemed like eternity, and then back in the bay where… i can finally sit down and breath.

I feel a good deal of disorientation. I’m not sure which timezone to believe. It was also quite the jarring experience to have 2-3 weeks of no Christian activity in China and then all of a sudden jump into St. Louis with 1200 ministers all singing Jesus music in the same room and talking about not being ashamed of the gospel. It’s funny what a few weeks away from ministry will do to you. And it was perhaps convicting of how little I maintain my relationship with God without a ministry need. (Actually, after typing that, I realize the magnitude of that conviction…)

Although it was disorienting, the conference ended up being a good experience. I got to see a lot of faces of friends I have made around the nation in the staff community… and better yet, it helped me to get my focus back on campus and what God is calling me to do. I dare admit I forgot why I was excited to be on campus.

But in what may have been the first time in a long time that I enjoyed people talking about the book of Romans and hearing countless stories of what God is doing around the Nation, I’m beginning to remember. Better yet, I’m feeling excited to be on campus again. At the same time, I am faced with the humbling fact that I can do nothing apart from Christ- and I must remember how to pray again.

Some stunning realizations. I’m actually still mulling over them.

But in the mulling, I feel this strange joy I haven’t felt in a long time when I read that black leather Bible… And although my choice to remember how to pray again reveals my own insecurities and baggage that come with my self-prescribed condition of being what I call a “post-charismatic”… I am beginning to feel that strange nudge again to pray… and when I do pray… this feeling of peace and confidence I haven’t felt in a long time.

Let’s hope it keeps going in this direction.

I’ll be back in San Diego next week. there are a good 10-ish people we are looking at for leadership, which is HUGE for community colleges. Let’s hope God will start revealing and growing their gifts of leadership this semester… and most of all that we will see more transformation in the students and campus of MiraCosta College.

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