why Urbana quite possibly changed my life
I mentioned in my last post that we had some awesome experiences over the holidays.
Over New Year’s CH and I had the privilege of attend Urbana, a student missions conference in St. Louis. While we’re not students anymore, CH went for networking purposes and I went to enjoy the conference.
The conference was quite possibly life changing. Not in a “wo-w that was so cool I just feel like my life is changed” kinda way. In many ways, I was challenged (which is healthy for any type of growth). Here are a few reasons why…
1. Urbana challenged me to think.
While at the conference I had quite moments to think about God’s vision for the redemption of our world and how I can live that out in my own life.
2.Urbana reminded me of God’s unconditional love for me and for the nations.
If you have a few minutes, watch this video below. This short teaching by Ram Sridharan cut me to the core and reminded me that because of Jesus work on the cross, every bad thing I’ve ever done is forgiven.
3. Urbana opened my eyes to worlds of different opportunities to serve God at home and overseas.
Instead of the traditional worship and teaching during the Saturday night session, we packed 32,000 caregiver kits for AIDS caregivers in Swaziland. Each conference attendee had the opportunity to pack two caregiver kits and write thank you notes to the men and women who give of their time to care for those with AIDS in Swaziland.
Needless to say, I cried a lot.
I have had the honor of caring for my grandfather on several different occasions and I just kept thinking about what it would be like if my grandmother (who cares for him daily) didn’t have what she needed to do so. I kept imagining what it would be like if he asked for a drink and she had to respond “we don’t have clean water”.
So I cried some more.
You can purchase a caregiver kit too through World Vision.
4. Urbana taught me new ways to study God’s Word.
During the conference we had a chance to study God’s Word through manuscript Bible study. Learning a new way to study the Bible gave me new tools to take on 2013.
My prayer is that the challenge I heard and the things I learned at Urbana wouldn’t be left there at the dome in St. Louis. I’m making a concerted effort to apply these things to my daily life and let life change start now.