BSM Students Reminded of True Reason for Missions
“Together for Jesus” reminds UMD’s Christian students of the true meaning of missions.
COLLEGE PARK, Md — The atmosphere was lively as students began piling into Memorial Chapel at the University of Maryland for the Together for Jesus cross-ministry event on January 22. The praise team from Aletheia College Park Church was setting up the stage as nearly 150 people filled the white pews of the 71-year-old chapel. Christians across different ministries had come together for a highly anticipated evening of worship, fellowship and prayer all for one purpose. Jesus.
“The heart behind the message was to help us understand how our love for God and our love for people should be the driving purpose in our life to invest in others,” said Aletheia’s lead Pastor Rob Stephens, who preached a sermon about uniting “together on mission.”
Stephens’ message posed the question: Why do we go gospel sharing? Jesus orders us in Matthew 22 to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” We share the truth because we love God and desire to see Him glorified. The scriptures show that while Jesus died for our sins, the ultimate purpose of the cross is to display God’s righteousness. John Piper said it best. “Missions exist because worship doesn’t.”
If the goal of evangelism is to glorify God, then why do we shrink away with fear when we should only fear a loss of His worship? Stephens explained how fear of sharing comes from a profound love of self instead of a profound love of God. In loving God, we should be compelled to reach people because we know their spiritual welfare is
entirely dependent on them having a relationship with the holy creator of the universe.
“If we really do love these people…We shouldn’t just be telling them, oh yeah, Jesus loves you, and it’s ok. We gotta’ tell them Jesus loves you and God loves you, and because they love you that much, they can’t let you live with the sin,” said Baptist Collegiate Ministries staff member Adriana Alonzo.
UMD campus ministers wanted Together for Jesus to serve as a catalyst for students to minister faithfully to their peers. Students were encouraged to prayer walk across campus, invite others to join, and intentionally pray for non-believers. A table was also set up outside the student union for two days, taking prayer requests and handing out free Christian books and Bibles. God, in his faithfulness, is using his servants and stirring the hearts of people on campus who desperately need Him. “Now we are
praying that after this intentional week of ministry is over, they keep doing it,” said BCM director Jessica Senasack.
Madison Wells-James is a senior journalism and cinema, and media studies student at the University of Maryland and participates in the BCM with BCM Director Jessica Senesack. MD.