Happy New Year everyone and welcome back to CoMission’s blog! Despite everything that 2020 has put us through, I hope you all had a very blessed Christmas and New Year. Although the holidays seem to make life busier, the Lord was good to consistently bring me into brief moments of reflection and immense gratitude for all the blessings he bestowed to me and my family over the year. Not to mention the blessings he’s poured out on our CoMission family as well, so I’m going to just share a little bit about how our staff wrapped up the end of 2020.
Every two years, the CROSS Conference is held in Louisville, Kentucky but naturally for this year, it was held virtually. That being said, the CoMission staff banded together and hosted an in-person gathering at Local Church on the evening of December 29th and everyone in attendance (roughly 15-20 people, including at least six students, if I understand correctly) gathered to watch the first conference session live on the event’s website. Everyone was supposed to have gathered again on December 30th for the last two sessions, but a potential Covid exposure resulted in last-minute cancellation and attendants had to watch the remainder of the conference independently from home.
So you might be asking, “what is this CROSS conference?” In a nutshell, it’s a hard-core missions-focused conference (specifically for 18-25-year-olds) that presents the urgency of taking the gospel to unreached people groups across the globe. This year, speakers included David Platt, John Piper, Wayne Chen, Kevin DeYoung and the Christian rap artist, Tripp Lee. This year’s conference theme was focused on the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6:9-13 and each speaker presented a different section, all the while linking the entire theme to missional living.
Another question you might be asking now is, “why is the conference just for 18-25 year-olds?” During a panel discussion at the conference, one of the speakers answered this question by saying that people in this age range have been popular for taking the gospel overseas to unreached groups, historically. Hudson Taylor, William Carey, Adoniram Judson and Lottie Moon are just a few examples. There is just something special about college students and recent college graduates when it comes to “throwing away” one’s life to take the gospel to rural areas where it hasn’t been heard. One of the highlights of the CROSS Conference for me, in addition to all the phenomenal teaching, was one of the missionary updates that were given. David Platt interviewed the president of Radius International, Brooks Buser, who lived in the jungle of Papua New Guinea for nine years, sharing the gospel with a tribal group called the YembiYembi. Before Buser and some other missionaries arrived there, the YembiYembi didn’t even have an alphabet in their language and now, they have the Bible translated in their native tongue. My heart was especially gripped when I watched the Busers’ documentary video and near the end, one of the tribal leaders said they had waited 2,000 years for the gospel of Christ to be brought to them. I would strongly recommend watching the 30-minute documentary which is included at the end of this blog.
With all of that being said, there are a lot of details that cannot be unpacked in just one blog so my idea for the next several weeks is to help us all acquire a new heart and mind (or maybe even renew our hearts and minds) for the urgency of global missions by sharing tidbits from some of the lessons that were brought to the conference. I might even share what I’ve been reading from the book, titled CROSS, which was published a few years after the very first conference in 2013. Get ready because I think the Lord is going to do some radical things in many of our lives in 2021!
I serve on staff as both Receptionist and Administrative Assistant for Gulf Coast Community Church and as Executive/Administrative Assistant for CoMission, the church's college outreach ministry. My role in CoMission specifically, includes bookkeeping, calendar oversight, document editing and of course, my favorite part: writing this blog. My hope for this blog is to help you get a feel for what the heartbeat of CoMission is about as I share various content on the topics of discipleship, evangelism, college outreach strategies, and everything in between. I'll even share an occasional update on the current events of CoMission as we strive to raise and equip disciples for the sake of the Gospel on the USFSP campus. May you be well informed and encouraged with every post. To Him be the glory.