Category Archives: Online Resources

Knowing God Personally

Hey, y’all! Do you remember a couple of months ago when we told you about a campus where Cru was having major trouble being allowed on campus? Then God used the digital contacts they had to bust the doors open for their first meeting. Well, here’s another tear jerker of a story coming out of a student from that campus and her phone.

“Your brother is being flown to the hospital for a collapsed lung. Come right away.”

These words stopped junior Cru leader Sarah (names changed for privacy) dead in her tracks. Her brother was in the flight for life helicopter and there was nothing she could do…nothing but pray…and drive. Sarah had come to know Christ during her sophomore year. So as she started the drive to the hospital she talked to God, and pleaded with him for her brother’s life.

Storming through the doors, she eventually waded through the hospital maze to find the correct waiting room. Hours passed with no news about her brother. She continued to pray, and that’s when God threw her a curve ball. Alongside her in the waiting room, Sarah noticed a 6 year old girl playing with Barbies. To pass the time, Sarah joined her. Curiosity and compassion welled up in her and she asked the little girl “What brings you to the hospital tonight?”

God_Tools250

“God didn’t want my sister to leave us yet, he wasn’t ready for her in heaven, so he made her puke up all the pills she took.”

Not long after, Sarah was ushered into a hospital room containing not just one, but two patients – her brother and the little girl’s sister, Libby, who had attempted suicide. After comforting her brother, Sarah went to Libby’s bedside. “Tough night?” she asked. “You have no idea.” replied Libby. After getting to know more of Libby’s story, Sarah asked if she could share some hope with her.

Sarah went on to share how she met Christ during her sophomore year of college while battling cancer. Libby was leaning in, almost falling off her hospital bed. Sensing the desire for more, Sarah pulled out her cell phone and pulled up a Cru app containing an electronic copy of the Four Spiritual Laws (now called “Would you like to know God personally”). In four easy to understand points Libby quickly understood the gospel.

When it was all over, Libby said, “It’s people like you who change the world. You save lives by showing people like me there’s something worth living for. You introduce people to Someone who is everything everyone needs. Don’t ever stop, even when you’re turned away, remember those of us whose lives were saved because of you.”

God saved Libby’s life from suicide so that minutes later he could save her for eternity.

Wow. Don’t ever doubt how God uses all circumstances to work good for us. In case you’d like to have these same tools on your phone so you’ll be ready in all circumstances, go to www.godtoolsapp.com.

MissionHub Comes Through!

MissionHubHey, y’all. Below is an email Keynote received just yesterday. We’ve changed the location and names (we don’t want to be the source of anymore troubles for our Cru staff on that campus) but we wanted you to have a taste of both the struggles and the victories God provides and how digital resources are one of the tools God is working through. MissionHub (www.missionhub.com) is a digital tool that Keynote helped build that helps our staff care for the people who need them most.

Vicki/Keynote/Mission Hub friends…

Wanted to share a quick story.

At [State University] Cru has had the week from hell….been kick out of multiple dorms, been yelled at by campus administration, almost had the police called on us. (believe it or not…we hadn’t even broken school policies…talk about spiritual warfare, eh?)

This significantly limited our ability to invite people to Cru and to build relationships. All we had to go off of was the 1100 people we surveyed and entered into mission hub. We used mission hub to mass text and mass e-mail interested students—it seems cyber space was the one area the hostile campus powers couldn’t control.

previously, our largest weekly meeting ever at [State University] was 200ish. Last night, every chair was filled, every isle packed, and we even had people sitting on stage we were so full. Best we could count we know we had over 300 people at Cru last night—BY FAR OUR LARGEST MEETING EVER.

And the Lord used Mission hub to play a significant role in that.

Love and appreciate you guys,

signed, [Campus Team Leader]

Whew! Reminds me just how much we need prayer because the battle is a spiritual one and God is the one who provides the victory. We’re thankful for being a part of how God worked through MissionHub, but always want to remember that our staff and our ministry tools are only fruitful in God’s hands. Please pray for campus ministries all over the country (globe) for God to work through and around every obstacle and that lives would be changed. Thank you for partnering with us!

P.S. Anja turned 12 today! As a mom, I’m still stunned that 12 whole years have gone by and we pray for her to continue to grow into the woman God wants her to be.

Spring has Sprung!

Comm Lab KarlComm Lab TimGreetings from Indiana, where spring has finally sprung and there’s lot’s going on with Keynote and Cru to keep us busy! Last week was Cru’s semi-annual Day of Prayer. Keynote is blessed to have the facilities to host all the Cru staff in the Indy area who wish to attend with us and it was a great time to honor God with our focused attention and remember that He is the one who really does the work, we just get the privilege of tagging along ☺.

Keynote completed not one, but two Comm Labs earlier this month (Karl put in some very full days running tech one of the weeks, but it’s worth it). I personally think this training is one of our best contributions to our staff and other believers who attend, because it gives them the tools they need to craft and communicate their stories in ways that will reach people more effectively. If you are ever interested in taking part (or know of someone who would be) please let us know. We’re happy to get you connected.

Thanks for all the prayers for Cru switching Email services. I think we’ve all had our share of frustrations at trying to figure out how to use the new system, but overall, the tech guys (like Karl) across the country worked hard and made the transition as smooth as possible. I, in one of my crankier moments, asked Karl what benefits we got from the change. He was able to tell me about an impromptu video conference he and several other staff preparing for our conference time in Colorado were able to have. That never would have been possible with the old system and it saved time and made communication so much easier.

That leads me into our big focus for the present and near future. Karl will be leading the tech team again this year for our CSU Conference Team. As you probably remember, every other year we go to Colorado State University to host several different trainings (New staff, Biblical studies, International preparation, leadership training, etc) and we culminate the summer with our All US staff conference. As you can imagine, this requires a LOT of planning and work to make happen, and all those people working want their computers to work, and their wireless connection to function and so on. That’s what Karl’s team does.

Please pray for Karl and the rest of the Conference team to have wisdom and ability to prepare for this summer (we’ve got a lot of changes, from housing shortages for families to different facilities on campus to work with). Karl will head out toward the end of May and Anja and I will follow as soon as school ends in June.

Thank you so much for being part of our team! You bless us greatly.

A Thanksgiving Challenge

Happy Thanksgiving! We hope that you were able to enjoy family and friends last week. It’s great to have a time specifically set aside each year to remember to give thanks to God.

I’ve been reading two very different books lately that both challenged me to think differently about what I’m thankful for. We often focus on thanking God for all of the good things that He’s given us, and that is certainly important. But do we remember to thank Him for the privilege of knowing Him and being His children?

In Old Testament Today: A Journey from Original Meaning to Contemporary Significance, John Walton and Andrew Hill explore Abraham’s faith. Abraham didn’t know how God was going to bring salvation, and probably didn’t think in those terms. He just knew that God called him into relationship with Himself and promised to bless him and be his God. If we didn’t really understand heaven and hell, would we be willing to give our lives completely to God?

In Crazy Love, Francis Chan says,

The Good News – the best news in the world, in fact – is that you can have God Himself. Do you believe that God is the greatest thing you can experience in the whole world? Do you believe that the Good News is not merely the forgiveness of your sins, the guarantee that you won’t go to hell, or the promise of life in heaven?

The best things in life are gifts from the One who steadfastly loves us. But an important question to ask ourselves is this: Are we in love with God or just His stuff?

Imagine how awful it would feel to have your child say to you, “I don’t really love you or want your love, but I would like my allowance, please.” Conversely, what a beautiful gift it is to have the one you love look you in the eye and say, “I love you. Not your beauty, your money, your family, or your car. Just you.”

Can you say that to God?

God loves us – really, personally, and intimately. As we move through this holiday season from Thanksgiving to Christmas, let’s remember that His greatest gift to us is Himself!

In the words that the Lord gave Moses to bless the Israelites:

The LORD bless you and keep you;
the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.

 

(check out Francis Chan’s videos “The Awe Factor of God” and “Stop and Think” on CrazyLoveBook.com.  “Stop and Think” is also below)

Lives are Changing

Greetings from Indiana! We’ve enjoyed a beautiful month, though now we’re praying for the east coast with the rest of you as winter front and late hurricane collide. God’s power, mercy and provision are evident in blessings and trials alike. Thank goodness we can trust Him to work all things for good for those who love Him.

Though Karl and I work mostly behind the scenes we do it to make real life change possible. So when I read the story below I just had to share it with you. Rhymz Suhreal is a husband and wife team that joined Keynote recently and tour as they are able (thanks to grandparents and friends who help out with their 4 kids ☺).

She was told “You Can Not Come To God…” by Becky and Zak Alwin

September was a month for Rhymz Suhreal to be out on the road sharing the Good News. We were able to minister to over 700 people throughout September. We were well received by the audiences we played to, which was encouraging, as well as fun for us. However, the real joy came in the conversations and time that we spent talking and praying with people after the show.

A woman named Brenda whom we met in Racine, WI, couldn’t even wait for after the show. She rushed up to the stage while we took a short break in our set. With tears in her eyes, she came towards us and called out, “I heard your music from 2 blocks away . . . I just knew I had to come!”

I hopped off the stage and we hugged. She asked me, “How can I know God?” Needless to say, I was ready to offer her the Living Water, and The Word of God. While we talked, she shared how she was told from her previous church that she “couldn’t come to God”- that she “could not pray to Him.” It broke my heart to hear that! I told her that Christ came and died so that we could come to God—that our relationship with Him was broken by our sin, but was restored through Jesus when we put our faith in Him!

I will never forget her facial expression upon hearing that. It was disbelief and shock, mixed with tremendous joy and wonder-the lies were being unlocked, she was slowly grasping this new found truth. To see someone hear, truly hear the real gospel message for the first time, was exciting and humbling—for her and for me! What a privilege and honor to be a small part in what the Spirit was doing in this lady’s heart.

That day she put her faith in Him—the One who made a way for her to come directly to the Father. Our new sister in Christ said to us, again with tears streaming down her face, “Thank you for coming. This is the best day of my life.” And it was!!! That day her name was written in the Book of Life and she could now start her journey walking daily with her personal Lord & Savior.

If you were encouraged by this story, we’d like to invite you to “attend” An Evening with Keynote! Join us online at 7:20pm on November 10 at www.keynote.org/live to be encouraged by stories and updates from Keynote 2012.