The International Mantle

 

Photo on valdosta.edu
 
 
 
Starting this Monday, we are going to kick off our International Operation Campus Reach (OCR). For those of you who are not familiar with OCR, every year, we challenge students to sacrifice several days of their summer break to come early to campus. We use the time to pray, prepare, and plan for the strategic outreaches that we will have for all the incoming students. We have one for the international students, as well as, one for the students who are from the States.

The iOCR (the international OCR) always starts first because the university allows the international students to come on campus earlier than all the other students. I am looking forward to participating in this year’s OCR for the international students. I will be sharing God’s heart with the committed international students during the first training session. It is exciting to see many of these international students who are devoting themselves to iOCR and reaching out to their peers.

As I came back to Ann Arbor, one of the things that God placed on my heart for our church was the importance of the international student population. After seeing how God used the people who studied aboard and then came back to Indonesia, I felt this tremendous burden that we needed to pray and invest in more international students for this coming year. I got a sense that God wanted to give our church an “international mantle.” Not only would we be reaching out to our Ann Arbor community, but God placed in our hearts to reach out to the 120+ nations that will come to the University of Michigan campus.

It is no coincidence that the newest state-of-the-art dormitory that was recently built (North Quad) is about 245 yards away from our church (thank you Google maps). When I found out that this dorm will be the central focal point for all the international and intercultural programming at the university, it just confirmed what God has spoken to us about the “international mantle.” God definitely has a clear purpose for us to reach out to the international community.

With the television production studio, high-tech media equipment for network and communication technologies, and collaborative work spaces with video-teleconferencing, the possibilities are endless in connecting to the global community. Especially, as I think about our international churches in Jakarta and Singapore, I know that God has great things planned for us.

Whenever God opens these kinds of opportunities, we must never forget that “with great privileges comes great responsibility.” We want to keep on praying for the international community, as well as being faithful in reaching out to the nations with the Gospel. This is what an international mantle is all about. We are humbled and thrilled for the next stage of our church. The ripples will continue to reverberate to the ends of the earth.