Winter Conference 2017: Daily Updates

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1/5 7:00 PM Arrival at Home

We have safely made it home from the 2017 Winter Conference in Dallas/Ft. Worth. God did some great things in our students hearts and lives. Last night, we closed the conference thinking about how the students at OSU can apply what they have learned. Join us in praying that God uses this conference as an opportunity to continue and increase the momentum we have building on campus!

In the meantime, enjoy some of the best pictures Jen and I took of the week!

1/4 10:00 PM Matt Mikalatos

“God prefers, & His deep and strong preference is to work through human beings. He’s looking for people to use!” – Matt Mikalatos

During the final session of the conference, Matt Mikalatos talked about how God can use us all to advance His Kingdom. The students were then given a time to respond specifically in ways they have been challenged. Different boards represented different challenges. Students gave up idols, accepted the calling to go and do things for the Kingdom and even took steps of faith on who they specifically wanted to share with. Each dot in the pictures below represents one person’s decision.

I am thankful that our students are taking so many steps of faith!

1/4 4:00 PM Afshin Ziafat

Earlier in the day, Afshin Ziafat challenged us to consider how God can use us in the world. Here are some of his best quotes:

“When I constantly remember what Christ has done for me, that is what will cause me to give all for Christ.”

“When we lose a desire to help others know Christ, we have forgotten where we have come from. We have forgotten the gospel.”

“The gospel, in its nature, is a sending gospel.”

“Some of you will go to the world, all of you should go across the street with the gospel!”

One of the most powerful times of the conference was when the worship band played “Revelation Song.” The song is based off of Revelation 7:9, where John is given a glimpse into heaven and sees people from every tribe, tongue and nation worshiping Christ. To honor that sentiment, when the band played the chorus, they sang it in a different language each time through. Singing a song in multiple languages following the calling to go to the world created a signficant moment of reverence at the conference.


After Afshin spoke, our students were shown the different international partnership opportunities they can go on. They were challenged and then given an opportunity to respond to that challenge. As a response to this day, I pray that we see many laborers sent across the world for the Kingdom!

1/3 10:00 AM Rasool Berry on Honor

Rasool did a good job articulating practical steps we can do to address race and systemic injustice in our lives and in the US. I enjoyed it so much that I posted the video as a link the the resource library. If you know anyone that is interested in learning next steps to address systemic injustice, I recommend following his advice.

Click the picture below for the link.

1/2 9:00 PM Wendy Chen on Idolatry

Here were some of Wendy’s best quotes.

Idolatry is dis-belief of the gospel. It’s saying, “Being adopted in God’s family isn’t enough.”

“If our response to idolatry is only try harder, we are missing the point of the gospel.”

“If I can look like I am okay, then people will think I’m okay, then maybe I will be okay.”

“The darkness of idolatry causes us to look to something outside of ourselves to make us feel worthy.”

1/2 3:00 PM Day of Outreach

Today we went to South Dallas and partnered with a local church to share Christ with the neighborhood.

We were able to share the message of Christ with many people. One particular conversation was exciting! As we approached a house, a young boy opened the door. He was shy but interested in what we had to say. Megan began asking him the questions on our community development survey. He mentioned his value for safety, a desire for better homes and that he loved the community around him. Megan asked me to share the knowing God personally app with him. I explained Gods love, our rebellion, the work of Christ and an invitation for a relationship with God. I asked him if he would like to make a decision to trust Christ. He said YES! We prayed with Devronn and he invited Christ into his life. Join me in praying for Devronn to get connected to the church we partnered with and to grow in His love for God!

It is clear, God is at work in Dallas.

1/1 10:00 PM

The students arrived and settled into the hotel. The first night, my team hosted a Dance Party and a Spikeball Tournament. It was a success and many students mentioned they had a great time.

1/1 8:00 AM Winter Conference Theme

The theme for this years conference is worthy. First of all we want to reflect on how God is worthy of worship. Second we want to trust that His calling on our life is worthy of our time. Lastly we want to grow in valuing all human life as worthy of love and value. I am looking forward to exploring the concept more this week.

12/31 12:00 PM

This morning I have been setting up the lounge for Winter Conference. My job is to help run the lounge and make a fun atmosphere for people to connect. It’s coming together nicely! 

12/30 5:00 PM

After an eventful drive to Frisco, Jen, the girls and I arrived at the Embassy Suites. We unloaded the car, arranged a few things for the conference and then headed to dinner. Lori and Austin joined us at a great burger joint in Plano called Royale Burger. Excited to be in Frisco for the next 6 nights and more importantly excited to see how God works in our lives and our students lives.

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