Delivering the Goods
Southern-based Student Mobilization launches a traveling team incorporating discipleship and training into its vision for the nations.
The Student Mobilizer is a new, regular feature to MF's pages. Our effort is to highlight strategic, God-glorifying work being done on the student mobilization front. If you are aware of a potential story, please pass on contact info and a brief description: [email protected] The Editor
MISSIONS: What comes to mind when you hear this word?
I don't know what circles you run in but I know the stereotype that comes to mind for a Christian college student that has some missions exposure: An old guy in a green suit showing a slide show talking about his forty-year commitment to an obscure tribe in Papua New Guinea.
How will a college student respond? "Well, it's official; I am not called to be a missionary!" Young people have heard that "missions is neato in a groovy kinda way" far too long. It's time to relate to them. But every student who has seen this "green suit" minister has one thing going for him: at least he or she has seen shown the slide show. The average Christian college student on a secular campus will not even have this opportunity.
Most Christian students on the secular university campus go all four years within the walls of their ministry without even hearing a word about their part in God's global plan.
They enter as college freshmen and get involved in a ministry group. After attending the large group meeting the first semester, they may get involved in a small group Bible study. This will continue until the end of their sophomore year, when they will eventually be challenged to start leading a small group study of their own. During their junior and senior years they may receive some discipling and would be considered a rousing success if they have a consistent quiet time and a prayer life. Then there are those really spiritual ones whoevery now and thenactually share their faith. But, you must remember, these are the exceptionsthe really spiritual ones. By and large, the thought of discipling students towards a world vision simply does not enter the mind of most college ministers today.
Here you have the testimony of countless thousands of college students. Their priorities are basically attending the campus ministry meeting, making good grades and getting married. So they graduate, marry and head for the occupation that they have worked for all these years. The last thing on their mind is missions.
What do you call that? How about a casualty? How can we let all these students slip away into the American mainstream like this? In the most mobile, teachable and critical decision-making period of their lives these college students are rarely even exposed to missions, much less discipled to go to the nations.
The Travelers (right): The author, Tucker Jamison (second from right), with visionaries from the traveling team.
ON CAMPUS (right): While emphasizing personal discipleship, Student Mobilization was founded by Steve Shadrach (Little Rock, AR) on the conviction that a deliberate, prominent vision for the nations must be integrated into campus-based ministry.
Will they ever hear about what God is doing around the world? Maybe? Maybe when they have their wife and two kids and attend the Saturday missions conference that their church puts on. What will they come away with? Likely, it will be one of two things: The green suit guy might talk and then they would be confirmed that missions was not for them, or they might receive a talk they can relate to and, on their way home, scratch their heads saying, "If we had only heard about this sooner!"
It's time for a change. Student Mobilization is launching a new ministry called "The Traveling Team." While not alone in resurrecting this ministry originated by the Student Volunteer Movement, we plan to go from campus to campus across the South Central United States putting on a one-hour presentation to campus ministries, for churches and conferences regarding God's global plan and what their Biblical role iswhile giving them some practical ways to work that out. For the next few days after the presentation, we will meet with the ministry staff and students, mobilizing them regarding their role in world evangelization.
We will be linking up with several major mission agencies that can eventually get them overseas. Then we will provide a seven-week summer missions project held at the U.S. Center for World Mission in California for further training. We will not be recruiting to an organization but to a vision. The goal of our traveling team is to expose young people to missions and help them become World Christians, whether at home or abroad.
If you are interested in having the traveling team come to your campus, conference, or church please contact us. May God raise up a great harvest of students going from the college campus to the uttermost parts of the world.