SPEAKING MINISTRY: DAYTON CHI ALPHA- APR 2020
I was blessed with the privilege of sharing a message with Chi Alpha Ministries in our Dayton Area on April 8. We have some friends who are in leadership of the ministry on a state-wide level, as well as friends who work on the campuses of Wright-State University and the University of Dayton. I was thrilled to be able to team up with them to share an encouraging word with their students.
For those who are not familiar with Chi Alpha, it is a college campus ministry of the Assemblies of God. Groups are formed on campus that give believers a place to worship, fellowship and represent Jesus on college campuses around the country. One thing that I have always been very impressed with is the ministry’s emphasis on discipleship. One-on-one discipleship is woven into everything they do. They create an intimate community in which doing life together happens naturally. And the result is young people on fire for Jesus, reaching other young people with the Gospel.
Due to the coronavirus restrictions, requiring college campuses to switch to distance learning, Chi Alpha had to make some adjustments to their ministry. Mainly, they are not able to have their regular group meetings, which I was originally scheduled to speak at. But when they asked if I would be interested in recording a message that they could stream to their students, I jumped at the opportunity. The Lord had given me distinct direction for the message weeks before the meeting, so I knew that somebody needed to hear it.
The Lord took me to the story of the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11, a portion of Scripture I cannot recall having every preached about. He revealed to me some important truths about building God’s Kingdom, rather than our own. As I prayed for these students and thought about the season of life that they are in, I could not help but think back to my own college days. I remember the feeling that I was going to go out and take the world by the horns. And I also remember how I crashed and burned in my ambitions and some of the lessons I learned the hard way. Essentially, I crafted a message that would be one of the top things I would have wanted to tell myself if I could go back to that time with a warning. “Dustin, make sure you are building God’s Kingdom and not your own!”
The four main points that I brought out in my message were:
The people of Babel had big plans, but God was not included
The purpose of the tower was to glorify man rather than God
The people were driven by their own desires, not God’s
God had to come and destroy their plans
As I pondered the story, I realized how easy it is for us to live our lives without including the Lord in our plans. This is especially true for younger people in their educational training. Choosing a path based on the potential to earn money, what others expect of us, or a number of other factors can actually prevent us from living out the Lord’s will for our lives. We can end up like the people of Babel, making plans for selfish reasons, without God’s input. Yet, as believers, it is important that we submit our lives to His leading.
It was truly a blessing to have an opportunity to make a contribution into the lives of this upcoming generation of young people. I pray that the Lord spoke to their hearts. In closing, I challenged the students with the thought, “Have you ever laid your future plans at the feet of Jesus and surrendered them to His guidance and will?”
It would be wise if all of us asked ourselves that question.
To learn more about Chi Alpha’s ministry or find a campus ministry near you, please visit https://chialpha.com/
DUSTIN RENZ is the President of Make Way Ministries, a non-profit organization that exists to see the world changed one Christian at a time. He has a passion to see the Body of Christ find rich intimacy in their relationship with Jesus and step out in faith to share the Gospel with the world around them. He is the author of Pile of Masks: Exposing Christian Hypocrisy and Something Better. He resides in Dayton, Ohio with his wife and three daughters.