Bits From Winter Conference || Emily

Today marks the end of Cru’s Winter Conference for 2017. This year’s conference gathered over 1,000 students from about 69 campuses around California, Arizona and Hawaii. For those of you who were not able to join us, the theme of the conference was Compassion, and following are a few morsels your fellow bears wanted to share from their experiences this weekend. 

“During the Day of Compassion [a time where we went out to serve the community and share the gospel], Madison and I talked to a woman who was relaxing at Huntington Beach. As we asked her questions from the survey, her response that stood out to me was how she rated her relationship with God and why. She rated it a 4 out of 10, because she felt distant from God, like He wasn't answering her prayers. This sounded familiar to how I felt two months ago, so I shared with her about my struggles and how God revealed Himself in the midst of them. It was great to be able to minister to her and have her minister to us. Before going out for the Day of Compassion I had felt like God wouldn't use me because I'm broken, but that conversation taught me that when I have authentic compassion for others, God can use me in a significant way. “ –Kim W. 

“When I'm up at Berkeley there are 2 voices in my head. The first is my own, which is reiterating my to-do list and urging me to control all aspects of my life. The second is God’s. What I took away from Winter Conference is that I need to put God’s voice on a pedestal, and His must overpower my own. When we listen for His voice more and share the Gospel with others, we glorify Him in all that we do.” –Jenica B. 

“I've been reflecting upon an excerpt from a Desiring God article I read, which talked about how we as Christians are called to outdo each other in love. Looking in on my life, the majority of it would not be characterized by a desire to actively outdo one another in love. Dwelling on that, I've seen the Lord revealing in me a need for greater compassion and intentionality. I wanna ask people how they are doing and actually care. I want to genuinely engage with others and approach all aspects of life with the same passion and fervor that I lead off with. I just want to be consciously aware of the need for investment in others and to take action in caring and loving, without falling into a comfortable rhythm.” –Chris H. 

Compassion is a core part of who God is, and this weekend challenged us to consider what it would look like for us to reflect His character and show compassion in our lives. Compassion from the Lord moves us. It allows us to see pain and suffering and feel empathy, and then urges us to do something about it.

As we return to the busyness of Berkeley, the temptation is to be preoccupied with the challenge and tasks that we personally face. So let's pray that the Lord would prompt us to look up and see the people in our lives who are in need of compassion.

“By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him?" -1 John 3:16-17