Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to my friends, colleagues and partners in ministry! We serve a God who has come and is coming again!

Look out for updates from Staff Conference very soon!

Currently digesting the yummy dim sum I had with my family for lunch today. :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Compelling - an overview report from Ann

My friend and colleague Ann Beyerlein, who directed the Compelling conference, sent me this report this morning!  

 "What do these stones mean?"   After God heaped up the water of the Jordan and brought Israel across on dry ground, he asked Joshua to pick up 12 stones from the river bed to make into a monument in the promised land.  Then the water went back to flowing in its usual way.  The stones were to serve as a reminder of the miracle God did so that "all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God."  Joshua 4  We looked at this text yesterday at our Compelling conference.

 Today is a sweet day of remembering the things that God did this last weekend.  Thank you for praying.  All of our conferences are special in their own way but we entered this one with a sense of anticipation, and today I'm seeing the realization of a number of goals we have been working toward with this conference and with our ministry in Michigan for the last four or five years.  

 God protected our students and conference in many ways and we had a lot of prayer before and during this conference.  Our main speaker connected well with our students.  We had an offering for the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students that was well over $6,000.  We had a couple of hiccups but in general the large numbers weren't a problem.  Our break out tracks seemed to run smoothly with students commenting on how much they had learned from the book of Philippians, about Jesus, about sharing their faith, about intercession, etc.   The highlight for us was to seeing about 40 students go forward on Saturday night either making a first time or recommitment to follow Jesus.  Many of these students were freshmen who have been in our Bible discussions this fall and who we will be able to follow up.  God answered our prayers for 10 students to move from darkness to light as they came into the Kingdom.
  • Please join us in thanking God and remembering what he did before and during this weekend.
  • All our students made some kind of application at the end of this weekend.  Please pray for these tender commitments to begin following Jesus, to begin having a quiet time, to share their faith, to enter into a lifestyle of more purity, etc.  Ask God to protect them from the evil one so that they "might always fear the Lord their God."

Friday, November 12, 2010

Reminder: Prayer for Compelling!


Compelling 2010 is beginning as I type this post! Nearly 500 students and 100 staff & volunteers are arriving in East Lansing for a weekend of worship, Bible study, training and connecting. Please pray with me for God to be present and moving among the students and staff!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Growth

Three and a half years ago i served on the planning team for a new fall conference that would be for all InterVarsity students in the state of Michigan. It began as a conference to train students in bearing witness on their campuses, and we decided to name it Compelling. Compelling 2007 had about 275 students attend, which at the time was one of the largest gatherings of students in Michigan (other than Chapter Focus Week at Cedar Campus).

Though I'm no longer on staff in Michigan i've stayed connected to this conference by working on the visual components - the flyer, website, and other graphics. This year there are nearly 600 students attending Compelling 2010! (i also hear that they unfortunately had to close registration early because there were no more beds available!) I am blown away at how much this conference, and InterVarsity chapters in Michigan, have grown over only 3 years. It is evident that God is working through this conference and as a result more and more students are inviting their peers to join.  It is so exciting to see this happen, from the beginning, when it was just 5 staff with a vision, to now with such a large number of students attending. I am grateful and honored to have a part in God's work.

Compelling 2010 is happening Nov. 12-14 in East Lansing, Michigan. Please pray with me for God to continue to meet students at this conference and that it will result in changed lives. Pray that Compelling 2010 will serve as a catapult in growing our movement in Michigan, that more and more students would become wholehearted followers of Jesus and make a lasting impact on their campuses and in the world.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Camps Calendars: Collect all four!

I am SO excited. After six weeks, the four calendars I've been designing have been finalized and sent to the printer! The project began with a bit of reluctance as I knew it would be a lot of work. And it was. But it also ended up being very enjoyable at the same time.

It was fun to be working with images of such beautiful places, and to think of the thousands of homes where these calendars might be hanging in the coming year. These are the homes of people who have experienced significant God moments at these camps and of those who support the ministry that continues to happen there. I'm glad to be able to minister to these people through these calendars.

Here are the front and back covers. Click on these thumbnails to view them larger.  (InterVarsity staff - these are going to be available to order as donor gifts on the staff store in a few weeks!)









Thursday, October 7, 2010

It's in the bag

I received a wonderful surprise a few weeks ago. After having helped design a plastic bag for Carol, whose team was going to use them for New Student Outreach in the Bay Area (California), she sent me a sample with thank you notes written all over the back! I wanted to show it you to also thank you! Your support and prayers enable me to produce things like this bag, which was used this fall to welcome hundreds of students, introducing them to the love of Christ in community!

 this plastic bag was used on campuses in the Bay Area (California) to give out care packages and other information to students new to InterVarsity.

it was such a pleasant surprise to get one of the bags in the mail with notes written all over the back!

here's a closer shot of one of the messages!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Continue the Journey



Sorry it's been a while since I've posted anything! It has been a busy month! Hopefully this video will make up for my lack of posts. This piece was created to recruit students to come on staff and plant new chapters on campuses where there is no InterVarsity presence. Please pray for God to continue to call students to join us in our mission to reach more campuses with the gospel, and that this video will be an effective tool in calling these students.

As a bonus, I have a fairly large role in this video, including a scene where I jump off of a kayak into a lake! (I first appear at 1:28). Look out for my SpongeBob SquarePants pajamas too. :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

a side project

a friend who i used to meet with in ann arbor asked me to design a brochure for a new ministry she is starting, which was actually partially inspired by our friendship! the ministry is called T2 Women and is based on the Titus 2 passage about older women influencing younger women. i created a logo as well as a block with the verse for the brochure and thought i would share them here!







Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Wish you were a 2100 Intern?


Check out this video made by our production interns Josh and Carolyn (Carolyn is the one singing, and Josh was holding the steady cam so you can't see him!) The video's purpose is to recruit interns to the 2100 team, but it also gives you a quick glimpse at our workplace! Doesn't it look like fun?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Change the World - animation

video

One of my teammates, Val, who studied animation as a student, put my design to movement and sound! Here's the final piece. The video will hopefully be used as an intro video for InterVarsity chapters' large group meetings or events. Great job, Val!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Prayer Letter Templates

I wish I knew the number of prayer letters that are sent out each month but I think it's a LOT. (1000 full time InterVarsity staff x at least 100 donors each = 100,000. And I'm sure there are tons more!) These letters represent stories of God changing lives through InterVarsity, they represent passionate staff who are giving their lives to the mission, and they represent hundreds of thousands of people who support the work through their financial giving and prayers. People like you!

A project I have been working on for the past several months is creating user-friendly, attractive prayer letter templates that staff can use to communicate with their partners. Here are a few samples of the final designs!


Please pray that these prayer letters will be useful for staff - that they will clearly communicate God's work and encourage our partners to continue supporting the ministry of InterVarsity.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Banner Designs

Wanted to show you a couple of banners I've designed recently. The white banners go with a New Student Outreach package I worked on this spring. The blue banners are for Asian American ministries.





Thursday, June 24, 2010

Hard at work for Orientation for New Staff

As promised, here are a few pictures of the display I worked on! The first photo shows a little diorama I made while coming up with the design. The rest are photos of the actual thing set up onsite!


 

 

 



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Friday, May 28, 2010

Team Day with 2100

Yesterday I spent the day with the 2100 team at a farm! (From Madison it does not take very long to get to farm land.) We had a great day of fellowship, learning and discussion. In the morning we read through Romans 12 as well as shared about significant things we've each experienced the past 6 months. Later in the afternoon we talked about our strengths using a training tool called StrengthsFinder. It was interesting and encouraging to learn about how each of us have different strengths, and to think about how we can use what we're naturally good at and enjoy doing in our respective roles. We also had some down time to just relax, spend time together and play games. We also finally got to take a group photo!


left to right: Jill, Matt (the photographer!), Becky, Steve (standing), Scott (sitting on floor), Dan, Val, Grete, Gary, me, David, Mike and Glenn. 

 And here I am playing croquet for the first time! And I won! :)

Here are some ways you can be praying for our team:

  • Pray that the Team Day would bear fruit in the relationships we have with each other both as Christian brothers and sisters as well as colleagues.
  • Pray that our team would continue to work together well towards our mission of communicating the gospel to students.
  • Pray for God's provision in our overall financial needs. Each of us has been asked to raise an additional 3-5%.
  • We will be joined by 4 new people next week. Adam Jeske will join us as Associate Director of Communications. Angela, Carolyn and Josh are interns who will work with us over the summer. Please pray for good transitions in joining our team and in their move to Madison.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Aisulu's last day

Today we said goodbye to our intern, Aisulu (pronounced Eye-soo-loo), pictured above in the middle. Originally from Kyrgyzstan, she was on staff there with IFES for several years. Since her fiance lives in Pennsylvania, she was looking for an opportunity to work/live a little closer and was able to connect with InterVarsity since we are part of IFES (an umbrella organization for student groups all over the world!).  It has been a great time having her on the graphics team these past few months. I learned a lot about Kyrgyzs culture, and in helping her learn more about graphic design, it's helped me verbalize ideas and principles, which has been a good way for me to learn as well!

Aisulu is moving to Pennsylvania where she and her fiance will be married. She is hoping to get another internship or opportunity in the graphic design industry. Please pray for God's provision and guidance as she moves on to the next chapter of her life!

New interns will be joining us for the summer starting June 1st. I'll write more about them when they arrive!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

OSU Price of Life - Summary Video


OSU Price of Life Invitational from InterVarsity-twentyonehundred on Vimeo.


Some of my teammates spent the week at OSU filming the events of this invitational. Here's the final summary video that they put together!

Praise God for what he has done and is still doing as a result of this event. Please pray that there would continue to be much fruit, both in the lives of the 20,000 people who were a part of this, and of slaves who are oppressed all over the world.


note: i also had a small part in this event! i printed, trimmed, and shipped the banners you see in the video! printing large banners like this usually costs hundreds of dollars, but since we have our own large format printers we saved lots of money! helping in this small way reminds us that a lot of work goes into coordinating this kind of event and every person's contribution is a way of serving the Lord and working to advance the gospel!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Thanks!

Thanks to everyone who came to my ministry update dinner this past Monday. I had a good time getting to connect with many of you, hear about how you are doing and also share some of what I've been up to! For those of you who couldn't make it, here are a few photos:


I brought cheese and cheese curds from Wisconsin. They were yummy!


This table displayed some of the work I've done in the past 9 months. During the presentation I shared a little bit more about each event/ministry, including Urbana 09, Imago Dei and Greek Conference.


This display shows a little glimpse of 2100, the multimedia communications team I work with.



Here I am giving my short presentation!


A special thanks to the Chow family - Hannah, Chris, Collin and Carolyn, for opening their home to me and everyone else. Also a HUGE thanks to my mom for planning the menu and cooking most of the food (and missing her Monday night Bible study)! I couldn't have done it without her help!

After a dinner like this, I am even more excited about and grateful for the wonderful people that I get to partner with in this ministry. It truly is one of the biggest blessings about being in a ministry where I raise support. It is a unique way in which God is clearly present in my life, and a beautiful expression of the way there is partnership among believers towards advancing His kingdom.

If you couldn't make it and are interested in hearing about what I shared during my presentation, please send me a message! I'd love to talk about it with you some time!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

OSU Price of Life - Evangelistic Event

Midweek Video

Check out a video made by my teammates who are covering the Ohio State University's Price of Life Invitational. It's an evangelistic and justice-oriented event focusing on the issue of human trafficking.

Thus far in the week 70 students have made decisions to follow Jesus! Please pray for God to continue his harvest at this event!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Prayer of Praise!

This is somewhat unrelated to ministry, but some of you have been praying for my family as we've been trying to rent out our condo in Ann Arbor. I'm happy to share that the condo will be rented beginning at the end of May! Praise God for providing tenants, friends of a few friends of mine in Ann Arbor. Thanks to those of you who have been praying with my family for this for several months now. We are grateful to be blessed through God's faithfulness once again!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Design(ed) to Tell

Grete, Gary and I have the opportunity this Wednesday to share at Chapel (the NSC's weekly time of worship, sharing and prayer). We're going to get to talk to other NSC staff about our work and what inspires us. Please pray that we would communicate well and that it would give staff a greater vision for how God works through our slice of the ministry.

Friday, March 19, 2010

2.5 generation ABC?

with some of the Great Lakes East staff 
at AASC in San Francisco, CA

If you're in the InterVarsity world you will hear the term "ethnic journey" used quite often. This is talking about an individual's discovery of their ethnic identity... in essence, a discovery of who God created them to be. Each person's journey starts and develops at different paces. I would say that mine didn't really start until after college. And throughout these past several years I seem to come in and out of actually facing my journey and reflecting on what God is teaching me.

Coming back from the Asian American Staff Conference, I am once again brought back to taking a few steps along my journey. And I think having spent 10 days in California, a place where to be Asian American is to be the majority, also affects how I think about my identity.

As an Asian American in the Midwest, it is hard to ignore the reality that you are not like everyone else. Further, among the few Chinese Americans there are around here, if your story isn't the typical "parents were born in Taiwan and came here for school" kind of story - you also don't seem to fit in. How can I expect non-Asian Americans to understand that I'm ABC (American-born Chinese), and yet my parents grew up in the Philippines, thus identifying much more strongly with Filipino culture than with Chinese culture - when other Asian Americans don't even get it? "Wait, so...what are you?" seems to be even more common than "So, where are you from?" Seeing how my experience further differs from Asian Americans in California was a time for more reflection.

There was a moment in one of the breakout sessions at the conference when we were asked to introduce ourselves and also tell what our ethnic background was. As the other staff went around the room, most were calling themselves "2nd generation Chinese- or Korean-American". I found myself conflicted because I don't actually know if I should call myself 2nd generation. For most of my life I have said "2nd" - but have always felt disconnected from other 2nd gen Asian American friends. What defines what number generation you are - is it the number since immigrating from your country of origin? Or is it the number since immigrating from Asia in general? I don't really know. If I'm 2nd generation that implies my parents are 1st. But neither of them have ever set foot in China. So... what does that mean?

I haven't quite resolved this yet, but I'm considering calling myself 2 1/2 generation ABC. Usually the "1/2" implies that your parents are different generations from each other. So, I'm not quite sure if that's quite right either. Perhaps I should say 2nd gen Asian American and 3rd gen Chinese American?

In any case, I am in the process of embracing the fact that my experience isn't the same as everyone else's, and that's okay. In one of the seminars, a leader in Asian American Christian history and research said that one of the greatest gifts the Asian American Church can give to the Global Church is to show that faith is embedded in culture, and is expressed in a wide diversity of ways. There is no one single Asian American experience, and that is what makes being Asian American so unique and interesting. And I love that I get to be a part of this community where I can learn how each expression of culture impacts how our faith is lived out. The next step for me is to figure out how my culture and background makes me especially gifted to express a part of the body of Christ that no one else can.

Monday, March 15, 2010

This is Our Story

This is Our Story  >> Check out some photos from Asian American Staff Conference!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Asian American Staff Conference

I'll be traveling for the 3rd time in four weeks - this time to California, where I'll attend the Asian American Staff Conference in San Mateo. I'm looking forward to a good time of training and relationship-building with fellow Asian American staff. Please pray that God will be speaking to us as a community as we think about the future of Asian American ministry in InterVarsity. (I'll also be making my debut as a narrator for one of the videos that 2100 produced for the conference!)

Additionally, I'll be spending time with several old friends in the Bay Area as well as down in LA. Please pray for safety in travels and that my time with friends will be re-energizing.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Veritas Forum Banners

Just wanted to show you a couple of banners I designed this week for a Veritas Forum happening at Florida State University. For more info about Veritas Forum, visit veritas.org.
 






 

Monday, February 8, 2010

a little late: Imago Dei

hello! i'm sorry for the lateness but i wanted to mention that i was at Imago Dei this past weekend in ohio! Imago Dei was Great Lakes East's first Asian American student leadership conference in 5 years! i was involved with the planning up until i left the region, and i was delighted that i was able to participate as a small group leader. i also helped with the print materials/graphics. :)

Asian American ministries in Great Lakes East has been growing in the past 5 years. back in 2005 when we had our last conference, there were only 2 Asian American specific chapters and a few full-time Asian American staff. now there are 5 chapters and about 8 staff! God has really been at work in building up this ministry.

the conference focused on leadership development, because the planning team had discerned that this was the greatest need for our students. we wanted to emphasize that as Asian Americans, we have unique gifts and opportunities to be leaders in our communities and in the world.

kathy khang, multiethnic ministries director of Great Lakes West, was our main speaker. we were also blessed to have james choung, newly appointed National Asian American Ministries director with us during the weekend to share and speak. along with about 20 staff and volunteers, there were over 100 students from Lansing, Ann Arbor, Columbus, Cleveland and Pittsburgh.

 
(Imago Dei staff and volunteers!)


this conference felt different than the many others i have been to. there was an energy of openness and enthusiasm that was perhaps generated from the group being predominantly Asian American. students were affirmed in their identity as Asian Americans and for some, it was the first time they had been told that their Asian American-ness is a reflection of God that is unique, purposeful, and very good. students spent time repenting and receiving healing prayer; they were challenged to make the choice to identify with Christ even while walking the line between differing cultural values.

overall, Imago Dei was a time to affirm who we are in Christ as Asian Americans, to celebrate God's gifts to us, and to decide to take the next step of using all that we are, including our ethnic identity, for the glory of God. i am overjoyed at what i saw God do in individuals and communities! praise God with me for changing lives and empowering students to be leaders. (a special praise for a new young sister in Christ from MSU!)

you can continue to pray for Asian American ministry in Great Lakes East. pray that students who attended Imago Dei would follow through in the decisions they made, and also that the chapters they represent would grow in their awareness of ethnic identity, resulting in further development as leaders and world-changers. and pray that new Asian American staff would be raised up from this generation of students!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Urbana 09 - a selection of photos

I've selected some photos from Urbana to highlight some of my work as well as to give you a glimpse of what happened. Much thanks to our extremely talented team of professional photographers who volunteered their time to take these beautiful photos!

Feel free to leave comments, & enjoy!

Urbana Stories

While visiting Ann Arbor on my week off after Urbana, I attended AIV’s large group. It was a great time to see my old students and colleagues, as well as hear some of their stories from Urbana. Here are a couple of the stories that were shared that night:

Dear Donor,

Thank you so much for providing generously to allow me to attend Urbana 09. For someone oriented toward scientific research and development, mission work was something that I did not really see myself pursuing. Once arriving at Urbana I realized that God had many good things in store for me. Surprisingly the things I learned related more towards my relationship with Jesus and with the world than my call to missions. Coming out of Urbana, I have a few major takeaways that I would like to share with you.

1. A vision of justice in the world. At Urbana, I learned about poverty, human trafficking, and injustice around the world. My learned response is to feel bad and be pressured into sending money, but at Urbana I learned that there is value in identifying with the people who suffer these injustices, that there is value in providing a voice to the voiceless, and that there is great power in prayer. I learned about a God who has come into the middle of history to redeem the world and make all things new. I learned about a God who hates injustice and I learned about some of the practical ways that injustice is being combated. Specifically, I learned about advocacy campaigns and the role of politics in bringing about God's work. It made me realize that I may not be William Wilberforce, come to set the slaves free through politics, but I might be someone who nudges a new Wilberforce to set the slaves of the world free. Practically, I'm hoping to help out with bringing the Human Wrong campaign to the University of Michigan campus, as well as get the ball rolling on a city-wide, week-long campaign to raise awareness, voice, and funds to help end human trafficking.

2. A new take on prayer. At Urbana I realized that my prayers often sound like they are being read off of a prayer request sheet. I've learned about praying like the Bible shows us, and I have learned the importance of the voice that I am given. The ability to communicate with a holy and powerful God never seemed real to me, but I have grown a great deal in this understanding.

3. A worldwide vision. At Urbana I was struck by the phrase, "get to know the world God so loved." In our fellowship's Large Group gatherings I have sensed that we have become ingrown. In response to this, I'm putting together a new segment titled "Get to Know the World God So Loved." We'll have testimonies from missionaries, send letters of support and encouragement, and pray for countries that we learn about. It is my hope that I can bring the world-wide vision of Urbana back to campus and enable others to explore their call to overseas missions.

4. Local mission. I was struck at Urbana, by the sheer number of people making commitments to long term missions, but I then realized that almost all of us had made that commitment when we chose to follow Jesus. I've realized that my apartment, my family, and my friends are all unreached populations who need Jesus, and I am positioned quite well to be a tool to allow that to happen. I hope to invite my family to church, invite my friend to study John 1-4 with me and to reach out to my apartment mate and bring him to an AIV small group.

Again, thank you so much for enabling me to attend this conference. I hope that you can now share in some of the wonderful and hopefully life changing experiences that I was able to be a part of.

Blessings,

Ryan


Jesus said that we are to love our enemies. I always thought, “Sure...I love my enemies - I don't really hate anybody.” But two speakers at Urbana09 opened my eyes to what Jesus spoke of. Both men began with their stories of pain and oppression by another group of humans - one as a Tutsi, the other as a Korean. Although they began in very different places, both of them ended up in the same place - realizing that the reconciliation that Jesus spoke of was hard but necessary. Although it was difficult, each man spoke about how reconciling with someone you hated (with cause) brings the only way to point to God together. I realized that I do have enemies that I hate: people who oppressed me, people who hated me, people that I thought I could hate because they did me wrong. But God said I was once alienated from God and was an enemy because of my evil behavior.

- Lily







As a senior about to graduate with a piano performance degree from the University of Michigan, I entered Urbana09 hopeful and expectant for God to reveal more of his plan for my life. He did not disappoint, although He responded in ways I didn’t expect. (Praise be to our surprising God!)

Instead of calling me forward into global missions work, He led me inward and homeward – back to the places I had come from. “Come and see,” He said to me. “You cannot carry the burdens of far-flung territories yet, for these places need you first.” At Urbana, God showed me that at least for the next few years, I must consider it my calling to be a cross-cultural missionary to the very culture I come from. Now equipped and immersed in the culture of our Lord Jesus Christ, I must learn and understand the deep-rooted brokenness that handicaps my family. Furthermore, I must discover creative and loving ways to demonstrate the holiness, truth, and love that Jesus proclaims.

His word never fails to be a light unto my path. Thank you for your contributions to the workings of God’s eternal kingdom. Peace be with you.

- Margaret


Friday, January 29, 2010

Style Guide - why it's important

One of the projects our team is currently working on is updating our style guide. A style guide is something that all professional organizations create to provide rules and guidelines for how their materials look. It includes things like what the logo should look like in relation to the piece on which it appears (a brochure, a banner, a website, etc.), what colors should be used, which fonts are appropriate, etc.

Some people might ask, who cares? Why spend so much time thinking about what our stuff looks like? Does it really matter?

A big emphatic YES is appropriate here!

This is what my job is all about. My job as a graphic designer for InterVarsity is to visually communicate with students, donors and staff who InterVarsity is. Just like InterVarsity's core doctrines, all of our communication must be united in some essential things.We want InterVarsity's look to clearly communicate our identity: we're a national campus ministry. Whatever campus you find InterVarsity on, you can expect it to be about the same thing - reaching the whole campus with the whole Gospel. When our graphics are consistent, that communicates that the ministry is consistent and unified. When our logo is used across the country, InterVarsity will become a kind of brand. Not the kind of brand that is trying to sell something, but the kind that communicates our values and our mission. When we are haphazard about using the logo or other elements of the style, it communicates that we are not united, that we don't know who we are, or that we don't agree on who we are.

That being said, we also have a challenge as a ministry that celebrates and values diversity. There isn't necessarily one image that could aptly describe who InterVarsity is. We also are about student-led, indigenous, grassroots ministry. To try to control what font people use or what colors are appropriate can be very challenging. The process of creating a Style Guide as well as making it accessible and user-friendly for our busy campus staff around the country is a project that our whole team will be working on in the next several months.

Please pray for wisdom, grace, creativity and healthy interactions as we enter this process! And pray that ultimately our work will go towards advancing God's purposes through InterVarsity.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Project Focus: Greek Ministry

Every year 750,000 students are involved in fraternities and sororities on U.S. campuses, but they remain a mostly unreached group by churches and other Christian ministries. Many of these students go on to become influential leaders in the U.S. government and business world, and yet on campus, Greek students are often condemned and negatively labeled.

Greek InterVarsity aims to reach these students with the gospel, through discipleship, House ministry (student-led Bible studies within fraternity and sorority houses) and other events. Because of the nature of Greek life, Christians who belong to fraternities or sororities have a built-in community with whom they can share their faith. The influence also extends beyond college years through a strong alumni network within the Greek system.

I’ve been working on materials for two upcoming Greek conferences, each of which gather close to 400 Greek students, many of whom are non-believers. Please pray that God will transform the lives of both believers and non-believers who attend.

To find out more about Greek Ministry, please visit greekintervarsity.org.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What's ahead...

Life after Urbana has slowed down quite a bit - I am not complaining! I'm hoping that the slower pace will give me space to get more involved in a church community, as well as establish other activities where I can meet new friends. The pace is about to pick up again though, due to a lot of traveling in February and March. Here are some of my upcoming travel plans:

Feb. 5-7: Great Lakes East Asian American Leadership Conference, in Ohio. 
This is only the 2nd time my former region has had held a conference specifically for Asian American students. The focus will be on leadership development. I was on the planning team up until I left the region, so I am excited that I get to go and see what God will do there!

Feb. 17-22: London vacation! 
Super excited! It's been almost 11 years since I was last in Europe.

Mar. 4-7: Asian American Staff Conference in San Mateo, CA. 
We have this conference every 3 years. It will be great to spend time with other Asian American staff and have a time of training. I'm also going to work on some of the designs for it, so it's extra fun!

Mar. 8-14: Visiting friends/family in California
Since I'm already going to be in California, I'll be spending a couple of extra days in the Bay Area visiting friends, then driving down to LA to see my sister and other friends. Looking forward to some sun (hopefully)!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Praying for Haiti

Wanted to forward on an email sent from a leader in our sister IFES movement in the Carribbean. Please pray with me.



http://www.ifesworld.org/news/item.php?newsID=799 


Excerpt from email:
"It is still very difficult to get around the city of Port au Prince and we don't receive much news from the provinces. The first rescue teams are arriving in the country but they will have trouble to get organised. In the country, people are emotionally shaken. Itazienne [Associate General Secretary of IFES in Haiti] told me yesterday how difficult it was for her to see with her own eyes buildings collapsing and people dying.

...Meanwhile, we invite you to continue to pray for this painful situation. Therefore pray for: good organization of rescue around the injured people and the survivors; spiritual, physical and emotional strength to cope with the situation; news about the members of GBEUH we haven't heard from."

Monday, January 4, 2010

Life after Urbana ... what?

I'm so grateful for all of your prayers and messages of encouragement in these past days. Urbana 09 ended in the early hours of Jan. 1, 2010 and I am now taking a much-needed week off. I thought I'd post a quick update between now and February when a full report will come via my regular prayer letter.

Though this was my third Urbana conference, second as a staff, it never ceases to encourage and move me at seeing thousands of young people who are ready to be sent out to be a part of God's mission. The energy, passion and faith of the Urbana community is overwhelming. I thank God that I get to be a part of this event and have a part in helping students experience God in such a powerful way.

Working backstage was quite different from my past 2 Urbanas. I spent much less time with students and in sessions. But I also got to see the hard work that was happening behind the scenes, which gives me a greater appreciation for the people I work with and those who spent months and years preparing for this in advance. Many of them have thankless jobs, but I am very thankful for them. Patrick Fung, one of the Urbana speakers, mentioned in his interview that God's mission is often carried by the nameless workers who give their lives to serve God. I believe I work with many of these nameless workers and I'm  blessed to benefit from their quiet faithfulness. It is a challenge to me, as I serve in a role that is often uncredited, to strive to make Christ known and not myself (another quote from Patrick Fung's interview. You can watch his interview from Day 2 of Urbana here.)

I survived many moments of being frustrated and stressed out during Urbana. One thing I know about myself is that I get easily irritated when something is not done efficiently when there could have been an easy solution. Working on the Urbana Today newspaper was not as organized as I would have wanted. I'm compiling a mental list of 'things to improve for next time' - God-willing I will still be around by then! I guess I'm sharing this to let you know that even though I am serving in ministry, I still deal with my own sinfulness in the process! It's definitely a learning curve and I pray that God will help me learn to be more gracious and patient.



Urbana was also a time of reunions. I got to see coworkers from Ann Arbor and the Great Lakes East region, as well as former students and fellow alumni from AIV and twelve students from my home church, CBC (pictured above)! I had a lot of fun catching up with them. It would have been nice to have more time for fellowship but Urbana is such a full, busy week, especially for staff, that this was pretty difficult. Still, I love that Urbana is a place that brings together people who are from all over the place!

Here are some things you can be praying for in the days and weeks ahead:
  • rest! I am exhausted, as are many of the other staff. Please pray that we will be refreshed and renewed.
  • protection. after a 'mountain top' experience such as Urbana, students will be especially vulnerable in these days ahead. pray that God will protect them from spiritual attack, as the enemy wishes to snatch away whatever good things happened at Urbana.
  • confirmation. thousands of students answered God's call to be sent into missions at Urbana! pray for the Spirit to confirm this decision in tangible ways for them.
  • re-entry. after experiencing a glimpse of heaven (a huge multitude of people who love God in community for five days), it can be difficult to go back to the mundane, the difficult, the worldly places we live in day to day. please pray God will help us re-enter our lives in a way that doesn't lose what was gained at Urbana, but enables us to engage with the world around us.
  • action. many students made decisions at Urbana. please pray that they would carry out these decisions, and as a result that God's kingdom would advance in all corners of the earth! 
Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Praise be to our Creator, Redeemer, and Lord, who calls us to work alongside him in making all things new through the gospel of Jesus.