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ometimes cross-cultural ministry

is as close as your local inner

city. The week of spring break when my

cross country team ministered in inner

city Detroit, I was challenged with some

penetrating questions: Is my life focused

around the gospel? Do I care more about

serving God than making my life all

about me?

My main impression of the trip was

the power of the gospel in the lives

of people that I observed. When our

team visited an inner city school, I saw

the power of the gospel at work in the

teachers who sacrificed time, energy, and

a better salary by choosing to work with

children from one of the poorest and

CIU Cross Country Ministers Cross-Culturally (in the USA)

Runner Reflects on Spring Break Missions Trip

By Erica Williamson

most blighted neighborhoods in Detroit.

When a drunk man stumbled into a

church to get his dinner, I saw the gospel

displayed in the life of the pastor who

treated him like a good friend. When we

shared the gospel at a local university,

I saw the gospel’s power in a Christian

staff member who battled depression,

yet trusted the Lord’s goodness as she

faithfully ministered to students. These

individual’s love for God motivated their

love for people.

A man who spoke to our team about

God’s heart for the poor expressed

the need for Christians to purposefully

move into the inner city with the gospel.

Honestly, the thought of living in a

dangerous, rundown, loud, and trashy

neighborhood did not sound alluring.

It struck me that that mission work

involves sacrificing our own desires. The

people who minister in Detroit clearly

understand this. As God taught me to

get my eyes off of myself, it freed me to

love others. The opportunity to apply

this lesson came right away. At an after-

school program I met a little girl who

was the rowdiest, loudest, and worst

behaved girl of her age group. Like so

many children, she craved attention.

When I showed just a hint of interest in

her life, she wanted to show me all her

cheerleading moves, play catch with me,

and tell me about herself. I saw the need

for others-centered love again when



CIU Today

Summer 2016