As we look back on what we’ve done and what has been accomplished this semester, it is incredible to realize the sheer number of activities in which we’ve engaged as a community. We’ve faithfully attended highly rigorous worldview classes, debated each other mercilessly in Thursday wrap-up sessions, served weekly in the local Pine Mountain community, conquered a treacherous ropes course, traveled endless miles to and from Chick-fil-A headquarters for leadership training, hosted a seemingly infinite number of VIP guests on campus including the world’s most intelligent guest professors, taken impossibly difficult pop quizzes and written scholarly papers on some of the toughest biblical worldview topics known to man, engaged in spiritually-intense weekly Bible studies, stayed up until 1:00 and 2:00 a.m. on weeknights being peppered with questions from faithful and well-meaning Student Learning Coordinators about what “lies beneath the surface” and why we think about ourselves and others the way we do, and risen early to attend some of the most intensive morning devotionals ever. And we can’t quickly forget the international experience training, the weekend at SIFAT and the overnight experience at the Atlanta homeless shelter.
In all seriousness, by God’s grace we truly have accomplished much this semester. But all this success and accomplishment is nothing if not Christ-centered and servant-focused. All this activity is nothing more than pious busy work if our priorities aren’t straight. Jesus said “Seek first the Kingdom and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). Seeking the Kingdom in earnest means being humbled and seeking God’s grace in the midst of our failures, inadequacies and woefully inadequate character. Try as we might, we cannot hide our deep character flaws for long. Regarding character flaws, C.S. Lewis once remarked, “surely what a man does when he is taken off guard is the best evidence for what sort of man he is. Surely what pops out before the man has time to put on a disguise is the truth. If there are rats in a cellar you are most likely to see them if you go in very suddenly. But the suddenness does not create the rats; it only prevents them from hiding.”
During TrueFaced week—the most spiritually intense week this semester for many of us—God turned the lights on in our “cellar” and is getting rid of our “rats”. He showed us the first step to accomplishing the IMPACT 360 mission: to be Christ-centered servant leaders. That first step is to realize how messed up we are inside and to acknowledge with humility that only He can fix us. Such an acknowledgement requires humility, a humility that Christ Himself exemplified when He came to us as a man and died for us. We indeed have accomplished much this semester, but we know that it is because of what He has accomplished through us. Activity, service, and busyness for the Kingdom are good and necessary, but not because they are ends in themselves; rather, they are means to Christ’s glory.
Thank you for your continued prayers for the IMPACT 360 community! May you and your family be blessed richly this Christmas season.