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The Blog of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship
July 28, 2011
Reflections from Krakow
Nate Schutt is an InterVarsity Campus Staff Member at the University at Buffalo in New York. He is a part of the 44-member InterVarsity/USA delegation at the World Assembly of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students, taking place in Krakow, Poland, from July 26-August 3, 2011.
My flight out of Buffalo was cancelled and rescheduled for the following day. The next day it was delayed four more hours, causing me to miss my connecting flight to Germany. After arriving in Newark, I switched airlines in order to get “across the pond” and sprinted towards my gate, belt in hand and shoes still untied from the security check.
It wasn’t until we were in the air that this thought occurred: “There’s no way my luggage is on this plane.” I was right. It wasn’t. I finally arrived in Krakow on Tuesday evening, totally jet lagged.
I knew hardly anyone coming to the World Assembly and spent a large portion of my first day sulking about it. God, why in the world would you allow me go through such an irritating and frustrating experience? I am slow to learn God’s sovereignty and quick to forget that I am not the center of the Universe. That position is already filled.
Then I started to meet people. I began to hear stories. Through them God graciously reminded me of two things: (1) He is on the throne, always. (2) This whole thing is about so much more than me.
I had dinner with a student from Nigeria. Muslim by birth, he got saved as a teenager from a life of fear and fornication, and became a new man overnight. Recently he initiated a campaign for the Nigerian IFES movement that raised over $30,000 towards a camp in that country that is now being used for Bible teaching and training, not just by college students, but by churches across the nation.
I listened to the story of a young girl from the war-torn nation of Bosnia who attended an IFES Evangelism conference in a neighboring country. There her heart broke for her own country and her peers who did not have an IFES movement to reach out to them with the gospel. She decided to start one. Today, just a few years later, she is the general secretary of the movement in Bosnia, and they are currently pioneering work on their fourth campus.
Why do we get so caught up in ourselves? God is doing something huge in our world! He is searching for the lost and he invites us to join him. Maybe we all need to lose our personal baggage at the feet of Jesus so that we can lose sight of ourselves and focus more intently on His kingdom.
The video above is the daily summary video from day one at World Assembly 2011 in Krakow, Poland. It was produced by IFES World (and not by Nate Schutt).