Cultivating Community

DISPLAY:

Lunch with a Purpose

Over the years, perhaps what I’ve appreciated most about the Missional Moments is hearing what God is doing on other campuses and gleaning ideas from other faculty. In February 2020, David Janzen from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo shared a Missional Moment about his “Life Lunches” — connecting weekly with students to talk about anything except classwork.  I loved […]

The Shared Life

In 2018, a dear colleague and I accompanied a group of nine students on a three-week visit to N’Zérékoré in the West African country of Guinea. This unforgettable experience, which included a week’s prior preparation and a final week of debriefing on campus, was part of a program that my university calls Mercer on Mission […]

Is It Worth It?

Early each Wednesday morning, I jump on a Zoom call with a small group of incredible women from my campus. We spend 30-60 minutes sharing life’s stories and praying for each other. When we started this group, a Zoom prayer gathering made necessary by the pandemic, I would not have guessed we would still be […]

Burden Sharing

That Friday, when my sister called to tell me that my brother-in-law would need to be intubated, I had a sinking sense of dread. This story was playing out across the nation. Healthy adults, brought low by the Covid virus, struggling to breathe, needing to turn to machines to help the body get the oxygen […]

Let’s Pray!

1 Thessalonians 5:17 – Pray without ceasing. The Apostle Paul called on believers to pray continually and to pray for each other.   Shouldn’t we do the same on campus? My institution is a four-year public university located in southwest Ohio. Like many other universities, we were hit unexpectedly and hard by Covid-19 when the […]

Another Conference?

Academic conferences. Man… I hate those things. I’ve been told that conferences are places for networking to advance my career. I never could bring myself to network with this intent – it felt disingenuous and exhausting. Time after time, I felt that I failed with every attempt. However, an academic conference I attended this summer […]

The Danger of Time Management

To survive in academia, it is required that a professor become a good manager of his or her time. Unfortunately, faculty are often asked to do more than they have time to do, and they become sorely tempted to drop “unnecessary” activities from their schedules, especially those that entail regular time commitments with no clear […]

Coming Back

After many years of feeling alone as a Christian professor on my campus, the Lord brought together a wonderful group of believers. We launched a Christian faculty and staff network in 2016. Off and running, we began meeting together for prayer and devotions, and we even hosted an annual regional conference in Northern California. I […]

And Then COVID Changed Everything

I was nervous as I entered the building and surveyed the room filled with people chatting and settling in. I was tired and it was only the fifth week of the semester. I teach a 4/4 load and have a three-year-old daughter at home. I am her primary caretaker after half-day preschool. I shrugged off […]

Pay Attention, Pray, Ask Questions, and See Where It Takes You

My campus used to publish a newsletter primarily oriented toward faculty and staff to build a professional community on campus. Each issue would usually contain a Campus Profile, which was a written Q&A of the faculty member being profiled, as a way to help others get to know the person behind the name. One of […]