A hallmark of uni ministry are public Bible talks, I love the concept that the word of God is being spoken in universities all over Australia so that any student or staff can hear it if they chose. I think it’s also great for students to hear a Bible passage expounded and applied in their uni context. The public Bible talks at Swinburne are known as Thirst and happen every Thursday of semester at 4.30pm right in the middle of campus. In the semester just gone we’ve heard talks from Matthew and Joshua and next semester we’ll be looking at 1 Peter. Afterwards we go out for dinner, which is an opportunity to build relationships and chat about what we’ve heard. You can pray that Christian students would continue to grow in maturity through hearing God’s word at Thirst and non-Christian students would be curios and hear the gospel proclaimed.
Our mid year camp, Summit is on in July, we are studying Jonah. Please pray with me that God would be prompting students who need to be there to sign up, and also working in non-Christian students as they way up other priorities with coming on this camp. Also please pray for me as I prepare to run an elective on camp.
Please praise God with me for the staff team at Melbourne Uni CU, it’s been a joy to meet with them each week for staff time where we read the Bible together and pray for the specific work each of us is doing. I’m really thankful for the many ways they have supported uni ministry on campus at Swinburne this semester.
It’s our final week of core groups this week. These are our bible study and prayer groups that meet each week. There have been 13 groups meeting this semester at different times and we’ve all looked at the book of Matthew followed by Joshua, finishing off this week with how Jesus fulfils what Israel fail to by being faithful to the father.
Please pray that the work we’ve done in these groups would be lasting. Pray too that those who aren’t Christians who’ve been coming to core group this semester would continue to read the Bible and make decisions as to whether they will accept Jesus as Lord, Saviour and King over the break.
Our first camp of the year is from a Friday night to Sunday afternoon. It’s aptly called base camp because it’s short, focuses on getting to know one anther and leads up to our longer, more involved mid-year camp, Summit. This year our president Emily organised Base Camp, praise God for her commitment and ability – I am so blessed to do this work with her.
Base Camp this year was fantastic. Rob Miller from Melbourne CU joined us and spoke on Jesus’ sacrifice and how we are to live sacrificially in response. He’s message was clear and powerful. We had discussion groups that allowed us to unpack and apply what we had heard. I was in a group of ladies and really enjoyed this time, we were real and honest with each other. We also had a student on camp who isn’t yet a Christian, pray that we would faithfully present the gospel and life with Jesus to this student and others who are involved in CU who haven’t given their lives to Jesus. I thought it was a great opportunity to share with this student that following Jesus involves sacrifice, and that this is a worthwhile sacrifice
The majority of student who came on camp were first years or new to CU. Over the weekend students got to know each other over meals, board games, basketball and our games night. Pray that this would continue so that students would make lasting friendship with one another so that they will challenge and strengthen one another in their faith now and after uni.
J-Day or Jesus Day is our evangelistic event in semester 1. It runs on the last day before Easter break. We hand out hot cross buns in a paper bag with Mark 10.45 stuck on the bag. Our goal is to remind people why we have national public holidays at this time of the year and let them know there are people, including part of their student body who believe Jesus was the son of God who died and rose again. It’s also an opportunity for students to ask questions like, “why are you doing this” and for people to discover that Swinburne has a Christian Union on campus.
Over the break we’ll be working on evangelistic strategies for next semester. Please pray for us as we do this, and generally that we would grow in having a culture that is evangelistic, where students are confident and bold to share Jesus simply because knowing Him is a major part of who they are.
Each Friday I get trained with other ministry trainees who are in universities around Melbourne. The program is called eQuip and is designed to complement our on campus involvement. This semester we have began with discipleship, Deb Sugars has been teaching us about effective discipleship, including one to one ministry. This has been really helpful to think through and have a solid Biblical foundation to this part of our ministry.
I’m currently meeting with about seven young women who are Swinburne students to intentionally disciple them. With some of them I amreading a book of the Bible and discussing what it means for our lives, for others we’re working through training material in sharing the basics of Christianity with new Christians or those interested in Christianity. With others we’re working on a spiritual discipline together.
Please pray that each of these times would be valuable for the growth of these ladies. Pray that God would give me wisdom in discipleing them and would grow me through this work.
I don’t take photos of one to one times so here’s a photo of the eQuip ministry trainees. Please be praying for them also in their roles on campus and specially their discipleship of students.