Monday, March 23, 2009

The Best Things In Life Can't Be Ruined By the Economy--Wesley Foundation Eletter (Methodist Campus Minsitry)

Hello everyone!  Hope you had a great weekend!  This week as we gather together, lets remember to bring some canned goods for local food banks.  This is a small way we can impact people’s lives with God’s grace.  Thanks to CSF for organizing it!  They rock!


As we look ahead we have some cool stuff coming up.  Next Monday night at 6:30pm in Garret room 301 there will be a prayer gathering for the Veritas event coming up on April 9th.  This will be an opportunity to gather with folks from other campus ministries to pray for and with each other, and especially about this joint effort to share Jesus with our campus.  On April 9th we will be hosting Dr. Fritz Schaefer, chemistry professor from the University of Georgia.  He will be speaking on the topic of “The Big Bang, Stephen Hawking, and God.”  The whole aim of this event is to engage people on our campus in a way that shows how faith in God and a love for science can coexist.  There is a meeting on Thursday at 4pm at CSF to involve students in the planning and implementation of this event. If you are interested in attending on behalf of the Wesley Foundation, please let me know.


Again we have a great week planned, filled with worship Tuesday night at 6:30pm and free food and a program at 6:30 on Thursday.  Our theme for worship on Tuesday is the shield of faith, how exercising our faith is so important in our lives, how to have it and how to use it.  Thursday night we will continue to look at the parable of the soil and learn how to get rid of those pesky weeds and thorns.  See you soon!


Now For Sami’s Ramblings About Jesus:


A few years back Nicholas Cage starred in a movie called “The Family Man.”  It is the story of a man who lives life in the fast lane, has everything imaginable that he could possibly want, is wealthy beyond his dreams, and is thoroughly miserable.  Even while surrounded by opulence that only copious amounts of money can provide, he is haunted by memories of his first love and what might have been if he had chosen love over the ladder of success.  As the movie progresses he has an encounter with a mysterious individual who grants him a glimpse of what could have been if he had chosen love.  This glimpse reveals a life far different from the one he lives, filled with a humble house, mini-vans, penny pinching, and sparse living.  But at the same time he discovers the joy of belonging, a wife who loves him unconditionally, children who bring laughter, and the kind of happiness he had been longing for all along.


If you haven’t seen this movie, I would recommend it, especially at a time like this.  I believe that the gospel, or good news, can be wrapped in a video box.  Because this movie comes with a message that the things in life most precious to us can never be bought in a store.  I am reminded of Tim’s and my first two years of marriage.  I was a full-time seminary student in Lexington, Kentucky.  I was a part-time youth minister at a small church.  He was in graduate school at UK working on a masters, also working part-time.  We had a crazy-high rent that we paid for a tiny apartment on campus at the seminary; it made a dorm room look spacious.  I believe the only reason we ate was because Tim’s parents fed us every weekend, and then sent food home with us to nourish us during the week.  I’ve tried to add it up in my head; I don’t know how we made it.


But as financially strapped as we were, I have very fond memories of that time.  We would take long walks together down-town.  One of our favorite dates was to walk to the public library and check out books.  Sometimes we would stop at a Mexican food stand on the sidewalk and get these amazing chimichangas, cheap.  Our big night out was to splurge and go to Fazzoli’s.  In those lean times we learned how to love each other well when times are tough and it doesn’t come easy.  And that love has sustained us for almost thirteen years.  It’s kind of funny now that both of us would love to take leisurely walks hand in hand.  We could for about five seconds.  And then reality would hit and we would both be chasing little boys, trying to keep up.


All this is to say that the life God promises does not come with a price tag attached.  It is available in any economy, and it survives any stock market crash.  In the gospel of Luke, Jesus sent out his disciples two by two, and said, “Carry no purse, no bag, no sandals.”  Just a couple of paragraphs later it says, “The seventy returned with joy.”  Did you see that?  I never noticed it before today.  It is almost as if Jesus is proving Himself to them by asking them to rely totally on His provision, leaving behind their own efforts of self-sufficiency.  And He indeed provided!  We don’t know how, or through whom, or in what measure, but undoubtedly they returned to him not needing to complain.  There was no room for complaint because His joy had filled them up.


The point is that we can trust God.  God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  Governments may change, stocks come crashing down, politicians and elected officials can disappoint us.  Even education, church, and family cannot provide the stability we long for.  We are really hungry only for Him.  And only He can satisfy.  We can even be surrounded by the stability that worldly success can provide and still be devastatingly empty.  So in this crunch time, let Jesus be it for you, your all in all.  He is able out of the storehouses of His love and provision to meet your every need, teach you to be wise, and fill you with unmistakable joy, regardless of what wall street says.  I believe our country’s current financial crisis is, at its heart, another opportunity for God to show off.


This is me trusting,




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Sami Wilson

Campus Minister/Director

WKU Wesley Foundation

United Methodist Campus Ministry



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