CP UPDATE #3 WAKE FOREST WEEKS 2, 3, & 4
It's been a busy three weeks.
WEEK 2 HIGHLIGHTS
I DON'T CARE WHAT OTHERS THINK. I DON'T CARE WHAT I THINK.
"I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me." -1 Corinthians 4:3-4
MONDAY was a great reminder of how God's Word never gets boring. I've grown up hearing the stories of the Bible and have the tendency to just mindlessly read Scripture. All throughout City Project, I've found how great it is to read with the intention of understanding and knowing more of who God is.
Monday afternoon we read The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness by Tim Keller. To sum it all up, it is GOD who judges, which means we don't have to constantly judge ourselves because Jesus went on trial for us and now God sees His Son in us (1 Corinthians 3 & 4). Keller's words were humbling and encouraged me to re-live the grace of the gospel daily.
"God saw all that he had made, and it was very good." -Genesis 1:31
On WEDNESDAY our group got to hear some insights on Genesis >>> God is the self sustaining definer and provider of what is good and when we sin we doubt God's goodness put our faith in another source. It sounds so simple, but it was so nice to hear such an unfiltered version of Genesis.
That night we went out to evangelize and had two notable conversations. First we spoke with a man from India that we called "D". He talked highly of his family and believed that brokenness in this generation stems from abandoning family values. We asked him about his spiritual life and he explained he didn't need Jesus because everything was going well in his life. We found out that D grew up learning about Jesus but when we asked if he wanted to live his life for Jesus D said he was content in the way he was living. Our second conversation was with an Indian woman named Ranita. We were able to share the gospel with Ranita but expressed that she couldn't put her faith in Jesus. She believed that Jesus was a real person but that He had no authority as God. As the conversation continued, Ranita was more opened to hearing about Jesus and took a copy of the gospel of John.
There are so many people like D and Ranita right here in NC. Through evangelizing, God has showed me that gospel conversations are necessary. Our conversations might not lead to salvation in that moment but they leave room for others to think about Jesus.
WEEK 3 (CHURCH WEEK) HIGHLIGHTS
WHAT LIFE SHOULD BE LIKE
"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing."
-1 Thessalonians 5:11
MONDAY night was pretty sweet. A group of us girls rushed to Barnes and Nobles in search of a specific book- with 30 minutes before they closed. On the ride there, with windows down and music playing, we all shared our experiences and how we've grown during City Project. In the back seat of my friend car I thought- this is what life on this earth should be like. Lifting each other up in everything we do and sharing what God's been doing in our lives.
"And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church (ekklesia), and the gates of Hades will not overcome it." -Matthew 16:18
On TUESDAY we broke down the question: what is the church? In this generation, it's so easy to define church on our own terms. We spent time in Matthew & Acts and saw what Jesus planned the church to be, how the church is supposed to lead, and what the church is supposed to do. Church is not an institution but a movement. Church is not meant to be organizational but relational.
WE ARE FAMILY
"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching." -Hebrews 10:24
Continuing with the theme of the church, on WEDNESDAY we looked at church as family. Most Christians will agree that church means community but we make living that out difficult. Individualistic mentalities, running from commitment and conflict, and the thought of investing time are some things that keep us from living the way God calls the church to live. Community might be hard at times but it what makes life good.
That Wednesday night was our last night of evangelism. We started off the night speaking with an elderly Christian woman named Patricia. She invited us into her home and told us her story. Patricia was a veteran and and lived by herself. We trained her in a way to share the gospel and we were able to answer some questions she had about the Bible. It was so nice to encourage another believer.
We continued knocking on doors in the neighborhood but no one seemed to be home. I prayed for our group and begged God to give us someone to speak to with the 15 minutes we had left. God answered our prayer and the next door was opened! God is good. We spoke with a couple and asked about their life in the neighborhood. They were very friendly and allowed us to share the gospel with them. The wife explained that she was a Christian but she knew she hadn't been actively living out her faith. Her husband shared that he grew up Catholic but never hear the true Gospel. My friend asked the man if he would like to have Jesus in his life and he said he wanted that. My friend led him in prayer and his wife was overwhelmed with tears of joy. I'm so thankful God allowed me to witness someone's heart being changed by Jesus.
WEEK 4 (KIDS WEEK) HIGHLIGHTS
(THIS WEEK HAS JUST FELT LIKE ONE DAY SO I'M JUST GOING TO SUM IT ALL UP)
One thing that stood out to me this week was our session about suffering. Our leader shared his personal experiences and reminded us to look to the cross and remember just how much God loves us. As we prayed for each other and saturated ourselves in God's word I felt the love of my Father and remembered His faithfulness in the midst of my own suffering and the suffering of those around me.
Reading Radical by David Platt on Monday was perfect as we're preparing for international. My favorite part of the section included a breakdown of Romans 10:13-15. I'm quick to remember the ministry of the gospel as a responsibility ("And how are they to hear without someone preaching?") but I often forget that it's also a privilege (“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”).
This week has been Kids Week at Summit and all of us at City Project got the opportunity to volunteer. Growing up, my favorite week of each summer has been spent at church. Despite being tired and facing some minor health issues, I was so happy to lead a group of preschoolers and point them to Jesus. Part of me thinks that us college students enjoyed it more than the kids!
As I am leaving for the international portion of City Project I would appreciate your prayers! ❤️
1. Pray that out team would rely on God, be humbled, and know that the Holy Spirit is with us- speaking the gospel through us.
"When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power." - 1 Corinthians 2:1-5
2. Pray that our team would be representing the love of God well and those we're sharing with would see our love for each other and for Him and want a relationship with Him.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
3. Pray for the hearts of the people that will hear the gospel. That they would recognize and believe the reality, mercy, and grace of Ephesians 2.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved."