Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sunday with the President

It was such an honor and a blessing to have Dr. Ron Ellis, President of California Baptist University, with us this morning in our worship hour.

He is a visionary, a man with purpose and drive and has done a magnificent job of growing CBU and its facilities.  More than that, he is personable and is readily open to sharing his spiritual side of life.  He was a pastor many years ago, but felt a calling to pursue academics and the role of administration.  He has been given opportunities by God to be the president of two Baptist colleges/universities.  He has made many mission trips overseas and has also just been elected the chairman of the independent college association for California.

At the annual homecoming event this past February, I asked him to come to our little church and speak.  Many college presidents just do an overview of the challenge in the realm of impacting students for the Kingdom of God.  I was taken slightly aback when I talked with Dr. Ellis' secretary prior to setting a date for him to come.  She said, "Do you want him to speak or to preach?"  My standard answer is always, "Let him preach."

This morning his message was from Matthew 28:16-20.  Yes, you will recognize that the last two verses are what are commonly referred to as The Great Commission.  But the two verses preceding that are especially noteworthy as well.  Despite the many days and months and years with Jesus, some disciples and followers still doubted.  That has amazing implications for us too.  We may have been Christians for a long time, but we are still succeptible to times of doubt when our faith falters for a moment.

But, glory to God, Jesus never gives up on us.  He still gives the charge:  "Go!"  Even when we are not as strong or faithful or joyous in our spiritual journey, Jesus still loves us and encourages us and says, "Go!"

Have you decided to always "go" when Jesus says?

Lastly, we have five wonderful CBU students who attend.  They were so proud to have their president at their church today.  All of them are being led to serve both here in the U.S. and overseas this summer.  Next Sunday we will have a "commissioning service" of sorts to send them off.  Here they are with Dr. Ellis:

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