The following is an excerpt from my book Campus Renewal – A Practical Plan to Unite Campus Ministries in Prayer and Evangelism.
Campus Reaching: “The long-term, relational, and strategic process of partnering campus ministries in united prayer to build missional communities that transform the campus with the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
“Long-term” – Growing Persevering Leadership
We recognize that transformation does not occur overnight. It means that we are committed to pray together and discover the vision over time, as God directs us. We know what we want to see. We’re united around a vision, but we’re aware that we do not know how to get there. We’re also expectant that God will speak to us and lead us to specific next steps in His perfect time.
“Relational” – Building Trusting Relationships
Our relationships with one another as leaders are the basis for the whole process. We believe that the movement will never grow deeper than the depth of our personal relationships with one another. To partner together to the degree that campus reaching dictates, we have to have trusting relationships with one another. We can work together on an event or two without trust, but we cannot do campus reaching. Trust is crucial. Humility is equally important. We have to believe deep in our hearts that we need one another, that we have something to learn from one another, and that every ministry is needed and has something to add to the collective vision.
“Strategic” – Collaborating Beyond Events
We’re not just working together to sponsor random events or initiatives. Everything we choose to move forward in together is purposeful and fits into the larger campus-reaching vision. Ministry leaders are tired of working endlessly in committees to pull off an event often with little impact. We know this is not going to change our campuses. We know we need more united grassroots plans that connect students and build a prayer-based missional movement. We want to partner together in something that will last.
“Partnering” – Sharing Gifts and Resources
Every campus ministry that holds to historical orthodox Christianity is invited to participate. We believe that transformation will not come to our campuses until we’re partnering our ministries together. Unity prepares the spiritual climate of the campus for transformation and allows us to get the best picture of what God and the enemy are doing so that we can determine the next steps forward in reaching the campus.
We believe that every campus ministry has its own“redemptive gift,” a unique way God has created that group to reach a specific part of the campus and to contribute to the collective campus-reaching vision. Therefore, we intentionally seek out leaders from every campus ministry, inviting them to join us in prayer and relationship.
Justin Christopher is the director of Campus Renewal Ministries at the University of Texas and author of Campus Renewal: A Practical Plan for Uniting Campus Ministries in Prayer and Mission.He gives leadership to the Campus House of Prayer and the misssonal community movement at the University of Texas.