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The Power of One

by: University Relations

AtkinsThe Rev. Brad Atkins, president of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, spoke to Charleston Southern students Nov. 7 about the truth of Luke 9:25 for their lives.

“What profit is it if you get that degree but you get to the end of your life and miss the most important thing?” said Atkins. He recounted his story of growing up in the church and believing he was accepted by default.

He said, “One night the Holy Spirit began gripping my heart as I drove by my childhood church. God said, ‘You’ve got everybody fooled but me.’ In that moment I became conscious that I was a sinner in need of a Savior.”

Atkins’ Chapel presentation came toward the end of Charleston Southern’s Power of One campaign: 20 days of prayer and sharing. The result of the 20 days of prayer, fasting and sharing was salvations, rededications and requests for prayer.

Jon Davis, campus minister, said, “The 20 days emphasized the power of the gospel, one story, shared with someone, one moment, can change one life. God laid this on Dr. Rick Brewer’s heart. He felt like we needed to have a strong harvest going into Thanksgiving. He cast that vision, and God laid out the three weeks for us. Every scripture shared in the 20 days of prayer and sharing booklet is about salvation.”

Brewer, vice president for student affairs and athletics, said, “The Lord impressed upon my heart in late September the idea of a season of Gospel-centered focus on campus. And it became clear to me early on that this could only effectively happen if all CSU ministry groups grabbed hold of this vision as well. Jon and Tam (Odom) did an incredible job enlisting the support of our various campus ministry leaders which, in itself, brought about a sense of renewal and reminder of our purpose as followers of Christ and ministry leaders on campus.”

Michelle Ard, missions and discipleship coordinator, came up with the R.E.A.P. acronym (Read, Evaluate, Action, Prayer) to use in the 20-day prayer devotional distributed on campus. Davis said, “We also used the story online app (viewthestory.com), where everything is based off of creation, fall, rescue and restoration with Jesus being our rescuer. The Spirit moved in a mighty way.”

“One of my favorite quotes is, ‘Jesus did not come to make bad people good but to make dead people alive,’” said Davis (attributed to Leonard Ravenhill). In his work with college students, Davis is striving to bridge the gap between Bible knowledge and heart knowledge.

“Where Christianity is today, there is a lot of Bible learning but not a lot of applying,” said Davis. “We want students to apply the heart of Jesus and the mind of Christ and take the next step in discipleship and go deep.

“We want students to ask, what does it look like to know and walk with Jesus,” said Davis. “Many have heard ethics preached instead of the gospel, but the real treasure in the gospel is you get the presence of Jesus, the Holy Spirit living in us.”

Brewer said, “It is our desire for our students to move forward with a love for Christ and genuine passion to live out and share the gospel in every dimension of life.”

Next up for the campus ministries department is hosting a packing party for Operation Christmas Child Nov. 29. Students plan to pack 1,000 shoe boxes that evening in cooperation with several local churches.

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