Dave called at 11:30 last night to check in...glad I was still up talking with Caleb!
He's at Master's College in California right now, speaking for their mission's conference. Yesterday morning he spoke on Matthew 28 and the Great Commission. It's a familiar passage - one that's probably been preached on at many mission's conferences!
But he took it a step further by challenging the student body...on the very first day of mission's conference! His question to them was: Will you decide to personally engage in God's global mission?
He then gave them practical ideas of how to do that right now, while they're still in college. He told them they can:
- decide to give, even on a college student's budget
- pray every morning during their quiet time for a missionary or place in the world
- go on a short term trip in the summer
- commit right now to the long haul of missions, even if they don't know where God will send them.
Throughout the rest of the day, the mission's booths were flooded with students. Mission reps said that students were coming to them saying, "I've decided to engage in God's global mission - what should I do next?" They said it's a totally different atmosphere than it was at last year's conference.
The difference? They said it was because the speaker gave a challenge! Way to go Dave!
There will very likely be people on the mission field for the long haul because of yesterday...that's awesome!
One side note. As Dave was standing at the Josiah Venture booth, an older couple walked by. They glanced at him as they passed, and then came back over to him just moments later. Their first words: "We've known you since you were a baby!"
The Grays, missionaries with New Tribe Missions, were in the Philippines when Dave's parents were there back in the 1960's. They were married there just three months after Dave's parents (in fact, they said they used the same ceremony as Dick and Margaret had, just changed the names!), and then spent years working among the tribes in the Philippines. Dave's mom and dad who were working with American GI's, would take their guys up into the jungle to visit this couple to see what they were doing!
And now, here they are in their 80's at Master's College mission's conference! Very cool small world - and very cool missionaries!
Dave has one more session tomorrow morning with the student body - I'm praying it will seal into their hearts the decisions that they've been led to make this week, and that they'll act on those decisions for the sake of God's Kingdom!