Our reason for being is tied to holy Scripture. Our name, Chi Alpha Campus Ministries, was derived from the second letter of the apostle Paul to the Corinthians, chapter five, verse 20. In it, Paul stated that followers of Jesus were Christ’s sent ones, or His ambassadors. “Chi Alpha” has its origin in those ideas. We are, as the original Greek language of the New Testament attests, His ambassadors, or sent ones…as though God were making His appeal through us.
Read 2 Corinthians 5:11-6:2.
Therefore, our mission statement declares that we exist to, “reconcile students to Jesus Christ, transforming the university, the marketplace, and the world.” Chi Alpha staff work to help students become Christ-honoring followers and pass on the life and teachings of Jesus to others. Our efforts are focused not only while they are on campus, but aimed at preparing them for post-college life and service in the marketplace as well as in their relationships.
One of my tasks as a campus missionary has been to highlight Scriptural and historical figures to illustrate and demonstrate being “sent ones” in real time. I have used the stories of Biblical people like Joseph, Esther, Daniel, Mary, Barnabus, and the little boy who allowed Jesus to use his lunch to feed thousands, as well as figures like George Washington Carver, William Borden, Amy Carmichael, and Martin Luther King, Jr., to show lives lived well. My hope is every student has someone to follow that is worth following in their quest to become more like Jesus. I purposefully chose Christians from different eras worthy of our examination and consideration of why and how they loved and served Jesus and sought to extend His kingdom.
New York Times best-selling author, Eric Metaxas, has written two books I like to recommend. He wrote “7 Men and The Secret of Their Greatness” in 2013, and “7 Women and The Secret of Their Greatness” in 2015. Both books answer the question, “what makes a man or woman great?” Both explore the question by telling the captivating stories of seven men and seven women who changed the course of history.
The 7 men are: George Washington, William Wilberforce, Eric Liddell, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Jackie Robinson, Pope John Paul II, and Charles Colson. The 7 women are: Joan of Arc, Susanna Wesley, Saint Maria of Paris, Hannah More, Corrie ten Boom, Rosa Parks, and Mother Teresa.
As the book jackets explain, writing in his trademark conversational and engaging style, Eric Metaxas reveals how these extraordinary men and women profiled here achieved their greatness, captivated his imagination that led to these books, and inspire readers to lives guided by a call beyond themselves.
I grew up with heroes and role models and believe they are extremely valuable for society. I also recognize the last few decades have dampened, even deadened the idea of the heroic, with very troubling results. Eric Metaxas says it’s time to reverse the trend.
Serve globally. We need to read Scripture and emulate the kinds of men and women we encounter there in our journey to become like King Jesus. But we also need to realize certain lives are also worth our consideration because they too are Christ’s ambassadors, His sent ones. Get to know these seven men and women, and your life will be immeasurably richer.
Love is a verb,
©2017 by Mike Olejarz