Author info: Michelle Luberto is a junior at Georgetown University. Her talents include all things media and design, photography, and consuming large amounts of lemons at the Tombs with Bonnie. When she's not studying abroad in France, she leads a women's Lifegroup and sings on the worship team. You can follow her on Instagram

Before I arrived at Georgetown, I was skeptical as to what my place on campus would be. Nearly every freshman feels that paralyzing fear at some point. The place that I now call home was big and scary and overwhelming - all I could do was hold God’s hand. 

Chi Alpha became a part of my story within days of my arrival on campus. Bubble tea and kind words (what I know now to be a staple in this community) were the vehicles that it used to work itself into my life.

I somehow found myself attending their first service of the year (dragging my roommate along too, of course). I was excited but nervous, hoping I had found my place. Jon Rice, our former director, gave a sermon on how messy this community was… an interesting way to welcome us new freshmen in. Looking back, those words were carefully chosen, transformative, divine, even. I learned from the very start that my involvement here would not be easy, but would certainly be rewarding. I remember leaving that night and thinking I had liked it there. I liked the way they served chips and salsa and lemonade. I liked the way the leaders had red name tags and were always there, spread out, ready to meet us where we were at. I liked the way the worship band was student-led and the prayers were authentic and Jesus was present. I decided to keep coming.

...my involvement here would not be easy, but would certainly be rewarding.

Chi Alpha was the first organization to let me in without an agenda. The first group of people to disregard the Georgetown culture of busyness and resume-building and look at me as the daughter of God that I am. Chi Alpha is a ministry who genuinely chases after God’s heart while seeking to protect each others’ - although we often fall short.

After two years of being on campus, I now know exactly why the Lord called me to Georgetown. I am nothing without Him and these people, this community that has built me up in ways unfathomable. I am at Georgetown to set up the chips and salsa and lemonade, to wear my red name tag, to lead the worship team and to pray bold prayers with the people I love. I thank God each and every day for this ministry and His faithfulness through it and have forever been changed since that first bubble tea.


Syndicated on July 6, 2017

Author info: XY Lau was born in Malaysia, raised in China, and is about to start his fourth year studying Public Relations and Strategic Communication at American University in Washington, D.C. Having attended multiple international schools in his lifetime, he has gained a fluency not only in a multitude of languages, but also in a multitude of English accents. The conglomeration of cultures through which he had lived would confuse his senses of ethics and personality, but he finally came to peace with who he was when he found his identity in Christ. He will resume his role as a Chi Alpha small group leader and homeless ministry leader once the Fall semester starts. Oh, and he loves puns and music. You can connect with him on the web and Facebook. 

Showing Up for the Showdowns

As this summer enters into its final phase, I eagerly await my final year of Chi Alpha. My daydreams fill with hope, and my plans are tinged with anticipation. Mulling through all the faces that I miss so dearly, I pray over all the new ones coming in. I am excited, once again, to show up for the showdowns.
 
Throughout my time here, I am becoming ever more aware of where I end and where God begins. I have seen Him soften the hearts of those I couldn’t approach, breaking down longstanding, robust barriers of hurt I couldn’t scratch and instilling a healing, lasting peace for so many longing students who let Him in. His presence has become that firm and steadfast anchor for our souls, His promises interwoven into the very fabric of our community. And with time, His Spirit has continued to mold us, growing us in holy wisdom along the way.

I am becoming ever more aware of where I end and where God begins.

As a Chi Alphan, I now understand that my commission as a Christian does not require me to go on a mission trip every year, but to constantly be on mission every day. The campus has become my mission field, teeming with precious images of God to be won for His Glory. It is in these instances when I see my cause as individual showdowns, each person I meet a new battle to guide them out of darkness and into His marvelous light. Seizing upon the urgency of the times, I ask God to use me in powerful and remarkable ways for His victory. And boy, does He deliver.

As a Christos apostolos, I now understand that I can’t win a showdown with a single act of greatness, but rather with a devotional, often monotonous rhythm of consistency. Sowing seeds within college students could often be frustrating, but at the sight of that timid, quiet freshman raising his hand in worship for the first time, I am willing to do it all again. For that sophomore who left his life of sin to devote it to ministry, I would do it all again. For that junior who became Chi Alpha President despite having almost died less than two years ago, I definitely would do it all again. From this steady rhythm came an outpouring of God’s transforming love, and I just had to be there to witness it all.

The significance of this ministry speaks for itself whenever one of my guys states that he would not know where he would be today had Chi Alpha not been there for him. It speaks for itself in the multitude of Godly relationships that have sprouted from the cracks of this university, from the deepest of brotherhoods and sisterhoods to the most committed of marriages. This is an impenetrable community, built on the rock to be the salt and light to the world. God has made a body of Christ out of our student body, and it continues to grow through the grueling showdowns of our mission.

As an Ambassador of Christ, I now know that God will make the best out of all we give Him— so isn’t it grand that we are called to give Him our all?


Posted on August 7, 2016 • Short Link: http://bit.ly/2aenb7m

Author info: Michelle Luberto is a junior at Georgetown University. Her talents include all things media and design, photography, and consuming large amounts of lemons at the Tombs with Bonnie. When she's not studying abroad in France, she leads a women's Lifegroup and sings on the worship team. You can follow her on Instagram

Before I arrived at Georgetown, I was skeptical as to what my place on campus would be. Nearly every freshman feels that paralyzing fear at some point. The place that I now call home was big and scary and overwhelming - all I could do was hold God’s hand. 

Chi Alpha became a part of my story within days of my arrival on campus. Bubble tea and kind words (what I know now to be a staple in this community) were the vehicles that it used to work itself into my life.

Online fundraising for Reach the City - 2016

I somehow found myself attending their first service of the year (dragging my roommate along too, of course). I was excited but nervous, hoping I had found my place. Jon Rice, our former director, gave a sermon on how messy this community was… an interesting way to welcome us new freshmen in. Looking back, those words were carefully chosen, transformative, divine, even. I learned from the very start that my involvement here would not be easy, but would certainly be rewarding. I remember leaving that night and thinking I had liked it there. I liked the way they served chips and salsa and lemonade. I liked the way the leaders had red name tags and were always there, spread out, ready to meet us where we were at. I liked the way the worship band was student-led and the prayers were authentic and Jesus was present. I decided to keep coming.

...my involvement here would not be easy, but would certainly be rewarding.

Chi Alpha was the first organization to let me in without an agenda. The first group of people to disregard the Georgetown culture of busyness and resume-building and look at me as the daughter of God that I am. Chi Alpha is a ministry who genuinely chases after God’s heart while seeking to protect each others’ - although we often fall short.

After two years of being on campus, I now know exactly why the Lord called me to Georgetown. I am nothing without Him and these people, this community that has built me up in ways unfathomable. I am at Georgetown to set up the chips and salsa and lemonade, to wear my red name tag, to lead the worship team and to pray bold prayers with the people I love. I thank God each and every day for this ministry and His faithfulness through it and have forever been changed since that first bubble tea.



Published on July 29, 2016 • Short Link: http://bit.ly/29ZKwpE

campus-bldg.jpg

When I stepped onto my university campus as an 18-year-old freshman, God was the farthest thing from my mind.  I love to tell people, though, that I was not the farthest thing from His.

Outside of an occasional visit to my grandparents Greek Orthodox church (where Mom did have us baptized), my family didn’t really engage much in a life of faith.  I knew only a few people who walked with Christ until I went away to college.  It was in my freshman dorm that I encountered the reality of the presence of Christ. 

Dennis, Kristin, Lisa and Andrew all lived on my hall, and they loved God beautifully.  What confused me (besides some of their views on things like partying and sex) was that I really liked these guys.  They were fun.  They were funny.  They were people I would want to be friends with.  I was totally surprised.

Written by Stefa Chappell   Facebook  ||  Twitter

Written by Stefa Chappell

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My new friends were all a part of a couple campus ministries on our campus, one of which was Chi Alpha.  In their ministries the four were well connected with other believers, and were encouraged that God would strengthen their faith in college and use their lives to show His goodness on our campus.  

Midway through my freshman year, my roommate started following Christ.  So did my neighbor, Randy.  They quickly got involved in Chi Alpha and before I knew it, Chi Alpha was praying for me, loving me, and showing me the sweetness of God reflected through their lives.  The students of this ministry loved me past my resistance.  Looking back, I really don’t know why I resisted.

My story demonstrates the value of university ministry.  

Students who come to college with faith grow stronger in their faith when they are connected to a faith-filled community on campus.  They live in the center of God’s mission for their college years.  Students who come from little faith background can see the goodness of God reflected through the lives of their peers. 

Yes, we can speak of the future leaders who study today on our campuses, and lead our communities tomorrow…and we do.  We can talk about the hundreds of thousands of international students who come through our borders and to our campuses to study before they go back home to their nations that are often closed to missionary efforts…and we do.  We can talk about how what happens on the university campus affects our larger society…and we do.  But if we break it down it comes down to Andrew and Dennis and Kristin and Lisa and Sandy and Randy and…me.  Ours are the lives deepened and changed for Jesus’ joy on the university campus.  

Two decades later we all still love God passionately.  We have travelled the world for Jesus and so much of our faith journey points back to our time as college students.  

And when I look at the students who walk by me on campus every day, I can hear their names in my mind.

Andrew. Dennis. Kristin. Lisa. Sandy. Randy. Stefanie.

Posted
AuthorBlane Young

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Blane: Tell us a little about what took you from where you’re at, to kind of a little bit about your story more recently

Chelsey: Yeah, so going from like not really knowing if I believed in God or wanting that. I actually had a friend - this was back in sophomore or junior year of high school - who started bringing me to their youth group, and that was a really new thing for me. I thought it was a little strange, I was a little bit scared, but I kept going - not fully buying into all of it which sounds kind of mean. But, I was curious.

Blane: I love the honesty

Chelsey: So I was being exposed to Jesus and to God but I wasn’t really sure, and it was a little scary, but something in me like …. I kept going back every week. Even though I was a little bit like, “this is… I don’t know… I don’t know why this is so strange and new but theres something about the people there that I met at this youth group, it was like they had this extra spark. I love this community, I love the people, but i was still a little timid about following God, I didn’t really know what that meant. But last october I came to TNW for the first time and I absolutely loved it and it was so new and it was incredible, it just felt right, it felt like I was supposed to be here. I was sitting in one of the pews, it was one of the first times I came to TNW, and I’d just been sitting there in the back, just like wrestling with like, “ok, I know theres this God, and they tell me that there’s this God that loves me, but if I want to follow him what does that mean?” I thought like, I don’t know, a bush was going to talk to me or a whale was going to come” 

Blane: It’s happened before, so I understand why you might think that.

Chelsey: Because I didn’t know what it meant to really be a Christian, to accept God. So I was just sitting there and Mike was giving a sermon actually, and he said “if you want to accept Jesus into your heart you just, right now, right here, just ask Him and say you want to follow him”. And I was just sitting there like, “really? it’s that easy?” And I was a little unsure, but then all of a sudden it was like sirens started going off in my head. And it was like great, and I just kept getting this, “yes, yes, yes” and it was a really enthusiastic “YES!” I was like, “Wow! This is so exciting”. And I had my journal with me and so I was getting this message “yes. yes. yes”. And so in my journal I scribbled “YES” in big letters across the entire page, I was like “yes. Jesus”. It just hit me and I was like, “I want to do this”. 

Blane: As you look back on that moment, you talk about the sirens and Mike’s message, what was it… if someone was asking you what made you make that decision, where do those sirens come from maybe, what would you tell them if they were asking you that?

Chelsey: I think, I describe it as kind of like; in my life, I felt there was something bigger and I felt that all my good fortune, it wasn’t coming from me ~ something was out there. But I just couldn’t figure out what it was. And so when I came to TNW and I found that everybody was talking about this Jesus. It was kind of like the missing puzzle piece and just putting it in and it fit right there. It was like, “this is what I’ve been needing, this is what I’ve been looking for”. 

Blane: So you became a Christian through Chi Alpha at TNW, which is awesome, really awesome… really cool. It’s like the preverbal question like, now what? Like what’s changed about your life, or what stayed the same maybe?

Chelsey: Yeah, like I mentioned it before, but I thought like… we talked about this in Discovering Discipleship, so I thought like…my mind was like… there’s one moment in life that was gonna be a huge thing and all of a sudden I was going to change and then suddenly I would be a Christian and be a totally different person. And it wasn’t like that, I was thinking about it, and it’s like… my life didn’t really change. I didn’t become a different person but it feels like now that I identify myself as a Christian, it’s not that I changed but more like I’m becoming a better version of myself. So it’s different in that way.  

Blane: I know when we were talking at the Dav, because that’s the best place to talk about these kind of things, you mentioned… in that spark or in that “yes” moment, like after that from October to now… that there’s just been this hope and this joy. Tell us a little about that, because I know like I see you on the quad and I’m like, “Woah, she’s joyous! Wow I should smile more, this is my job!” Maybe tell me where that comes from, maybe tell everyone where that comes from for you. 

Chelsey: Yeah it was just like.. I just got so excited! I don’t know, its Jesus, why not be super excited? I’ve kinda been realizing like… once i’ve started getting more into Chi Alpha …I was like on fire all the time, super super energetic, I’ve learned to slow down and make sure I’m doing it for God. Because it’s really easy to get caught up in like, “I want to do everything”. Chi Alpha is a great thing with so many opportunities and great people. 

Blane: Chelsey we are honored to be a part of your story. 

Posted
AuthorBlane Young