We’re Moving!

For those astute followers of our twitter feed, you might have noticed that we took a trip to Apex, NC recently.  We didn’t just visit because it’s “the peak of good living,” but because it is the location of our regional office with Campus Crusade for Christ.  We’ve been prayerfully considering a move to the regional office for a number of months, and wanted to take a brief trip to the office to see what it might look like to work there.

After just 2 days, our questions have been answered, and we (along with the Leadership Development team in charge of placing us) have decided the time is right to make the move!

Over the next couple of days, we’ll be answering some of the questions we’ve been getting from friends and family regarding the move.  Suffice it to say that we are very excited to be joining the team in Apex, and look forward to how God is going to use us to reach students all over the Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky, and West Virginia.

What questions do you have about the move?

When, What, and wherefore:

Colleen asked some great questions yesterday in the comments, and so that’s where I’ll start.

We will be moving probably in April.  There is a small chance we could go before then (with March as the absolute earliest), but I’d guess we’ll be going no earlier than April fools day.  (no joke.)

As we have prayed and thought through our current roles on campus, I’d say starting about a year ago (maybe more), we felt that more and more of our time was being spent doing operational support type things (websites, communication, graphic design, etc), and that type of stuff was very energizing.  That’s not to say we don’t still enjoy sharing our faith and engaging with students, or that we have changed our mind about our personal vision.  We still long for Christ to be made famous on the college campus.  We’re still devoting our energy to that end.

We’ve just broadened the scope.  Before we were praying and laboring for a handful of campuses in Western NC, representing somewhere in the neighborhood of 40,000 students.  In the regional office, the scope is 27 local areas (of which Western NC is one) representing a little over 1,000,000 students. (2 million if you count our partnership with Brooklyn)

So that’s the why.  What we will be doing in the regional office is working with the operations team.  On the team, each person is both a specialist and a generalist.  My specialty will be in the creative vein, working with web design, writing, and social media.  I also would love to help in leading worship/program planning at several regional conferences per year.  As a generalist, I will help the team in the vision to “increase capacity and sustain the mission of turning lost students into Christ-centered laborers” In short, we want to do things that will free up field staff to be more effective at what they are already doing, and enable and equip them to move out in ways they haven’t before.  Jacqueline will be helping out on a limited part-time basis in the office with the finance team and the conference/event planning team (both subsets of the operations team)

Colleen’s last question is one that I’m glad she asked.

“Is this at all related to the difficulties that you have had in raising support recently? How are you guys doing with that?”

Which is directly related to the most frequently asked question of them all.

“Will you still have to raise support?”

The answer to those questions, however, will take an entire post.  Tomorrow I’ll cover that.

In the meantime, what other questions do you have? (and a big thank you to Colleen for asking great first-round questions!)

Will you still have to Raise Support?

Like LL Cool J, I feel like this topic is less of comeback, and more like I’ve literally been here for years.

This isn’t the first time I’ve written about raising funds.

Perspective, when it comes to finances, is something I lose about every 15 minutes.  I need to be reminded of the truth on a regular basis.  I figure if I lose perspective, so do the people who support us.  Hopefully not as often, though.

So when we talk about moving, and among the first questions is the ticking time-bomb of “will you still have to raise support?” I like to pause and remind myself (and anybody standing nearby enough to hear) why support raising is not a chore, but a blessing.  A privilege.  Not a “have to” but a “get to.”

The short answer is yes, we are still fully supported by the generous contributions of concerned individuals and churches. There’s no central fund for paying office staff or field staff within Campus Crusade.

And I’m glad.  This way, we really rely on God even for the folks in the cubicles in Apex.  There’s still a department that does the hiring, but God does the confirming by doing what we can’t do, raise up the funds to pay the staff.  And as I’ve mentioned in the past, raising support is a constant reminder (in the midst of the money-driven “ethics” of western culture) that I am not a rock or an island, no matter what Paul Simon tells me, and I can’t do or have it “my way,” even if Frank Sinatra or Burger King urge me to.  Calling folks and challenging them to be on my team of ministry partners pushes me toward a biblical, humble, interdependence with others.

In answer to Colleen’s specific question about the difficulties we’ve been having raising support recently, what coming off campus for a whole semester did was help us see clearly what it might look like to be off campus.  So, yeah, the support struggles lately did help us to make the decision, but not because we are done raising support.  They just afforded us the opportunity to see outside of the “campus” bubble we’d been in for years.  And we liked it outside of the bubble.

So, until the next time I need reminding, you can always join our team of partners here.

A few more Questions about the Move!

Here’s a few more questions we’ve been getting about the move:

Are you buying or renting?

We’re renting.  In fact, we already know where!  We’ll be in Holly Springs, for those who know the area.  We’re excited about the house.  Come see us once we move!

How many folks work in the regional office? Speaking of regional… how big is a region?

It’s not easy to get a count of everyone that works at the office, as there’s a lot of part-timers and other folks that filter in and out of the office. I’d say at least 25 folks work there.  On the team we’re joining, there are around 9 people, counting those raising support to get there (but not counting us).

Our regions consists of North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Marshall from West Virginia.  There’s approximately 1 million students in our region.  Also, we have a partnership with Brooklyn in New York City, and partnerships with locations overseas (read more about our regional partnerships here)

Are cubicles involved?

Yes.  Yes, a million times yes.  The cubicles had me at hello.

Where are you going to go to church?

We aren’t sure yet.  I just wrote a bit of a lengthy explanation of what type of church we are and aren’t looking for, but realized it needs to be it’s own post (and needs significant editing/filtering).  Check back tomorrow for that post.

Until then, what questions have we not answered about the move?

Freestyling on Church Hunting.

We are open to suggestions, as long as those suggesting don’t take it too personally if we don’t go to (or try out) their church.  Here’s some rough idea of what we are looking for: We are ok with PCA churches, Sovereign Grace churches, Acts 29 churches, and other theologically conservative, reformed type churches.  If we could go to any church on the planet it would be Tim Keller’s church in NYC, so that tells you an ideal to shoot for.  I want a church that has a missions focus driven by the gospel.  To be honest, culturally or politically conservative churches kind of scare me.

Also, since we are going to be living in Holly Springs, distance is near the top of the list.  I like the idea of a community to get plugged into.  I don’t want to drive 45 minutes to church.

Now for some things that will immediately turn me off about a church:

  1. If they don’t do background checks on ALL childcare workers.  I know you know everyone that works with children and have since they were kids… but I don’t know them.  I wouldn’t drop my kid off at a daycare without certification, and I am not going to drop them off at your church nursery either.  Those places without background checks are magnets for pedophiles.  All they have to do is pretend they like Jesus.
  2. If the sermon focuses more on making me a better person than pointing me to a better person (Jesus).  I don’t need self-help.  I need saving.
  3. If I get even a hint of “God will bless you if you give” from your church, I’m out.  God has blessed me in Christ, so I give.  Never the other way around.

We are looking forward to finding a new church, but we hate to be leaving a church here in Asheville that is amazing.  But God is big enough to have more than one amazing church.  I’ve been a member of THREE amazing churches, during and since college.

Bring on number 4.

Where should we go to church in the Triangle?