Monday, February 28, 2011

Signposts to the Kingdom

Eleven students and Laurie Truschel, director of student ministries, flew to Pittsburgh last week to attend the annual Jubilee Conference--a conference designed to introduce students to people who are seeking to live their lives as "signposts to the Kingdom."

It is sponsored by the Coalition for Christian Outreach--a campus ministry that partners with churches, colleges and other organizations to develop men and women who live out their Christian faith in every area of life. "Whatever field students pursue academically, the conference shines a spotlight on living faithful lives," said Laurie Truschel, director of student ministries, who attended her first Jubilee Conference in the 1980s and previously worked for Jubiliee as their director. "It's fun to go back and see what's new. I'm always inspired by the speakers, who are really striving to make a difference in their areas of work, giving glory to God and impacting the culture by living out the gospel.

"The speakers inspired me to think seriously and imaginatively about the ways God is calling me to engage in the world, said Lacy Palmer, a senior double majoring in both psychology and music. "I was captivated by Andi Ashworth's session on extending hospitality to weary travelers in life's journey. She breathed new life into my heart's desire to extend grace to everyone I meet. Phrases like "ministry of presence" and "havens of grace" are more than good ideas; they are hard-earned truths that Andi has refined through a life dedicated to loving others with the love of Christ. I am not certain what life after Gordon will hold for me, but hearing from one who has invested her own life's work into this type of care fills me with hope and a renewed desire to place caregiving at the top of my postgrad to-do list."

Gordon students heard from a variety of Christians who are living faithful lives in every area of life all over the world. Some of the speakers included Eric Metaxas, author of Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy; Charlie Peacock, songwriter, publisher, record producer; Lisa Sharon Harper, author and cofounder of NY Faith and Justice; Gabe Lyons, author of UnChristian; Michael Gerson, senior advisor at ONE; and Jessica Patterson, foreign service officer in Israel, Chile, and soon to be in southeastern Afghanistan. 

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