I got a letter last week from a ministry partner that indicated they are coming off of our team, because we were “going to be working in the office for Campus Crusade and not out in the field with college young people.” He went on to explain how he will be supporting some folks from his church that are “out in the field as a strong witness for the Lord.”
It of course saddens me that folks would leave our team financially (especially while we are in the midst of trusting God for more folks on our team), but I am far more saddened that I have done an obviously bad job of explaining our new role within Campus Crusade.
Unfortunately, because I didn’t know any better, I’ve often referred to the new role as a “job,” and the regional team as an “office.” Those two terms go a long way toward alienating folks who have nothing but negative associations with “jobs” and “offices.” I am working now to change not only how I talk about our new role and new team, but how I relate to others the vibrant environment that I am moving to with the singular goal of maximizing effectiveness and reach of our staff on campuses all over the region.
I’m going from reaching 40,000 (ish) students in Western NC to having direct impact on 1,100,000 (ish) students in NC, SC, TN, KY, and WV. I’m not leaving the field, I’m broadening the scope. Utilizing the latest in technology, I’ll literally be able to reach students in their pocket with the gospel. Never before have we had more of an ability to get the message of Christ to more people, more relationally. Through technology like twitter and facebook, we are able to not only bring a relevant message, but bring it with the “thumbs up” of your 5 closest friends.
So, while I understand that for some my move to Apex will be seen as a move away from the front lines, and that they will feel called to support others; I assure you that, for me, this is a strategic move closer to students, to a place where I will be able to use my unique gifting to reach the most people, most urgently.
Pray with me that though I lost $50 per month, I will gain (and learn from) a new perspective on how I ought to communicate my passion for students to folks that don’t “get” social media.