August 31 – Missions Spotlight – Mark and Roxanne Johnson

Read 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10

Ministry: Winning college students to Christ, building them up in their faith, and sending them out into the world to do the same for others

Missionaries: Mark and Roxanne Johnson

College students are one of the most unique groups of people on the planet. They sit at a crossroads in life, figuring out who they are and what they believe. The choices they make will affect the rest of their lives, for good or for ill. Furthermore, many of them will eventually become leaders in their businesses and communities. If we can reach the campus for Christ today, then perhaps students will help reach the world tomorrow.

In this Bible passage, we see Paul praising and thanking God for how the gospel impacted the lives of the Thessalonians. Paul brought the gospel in conviction and power to Thessalonica over the course of a few weeks (see Acts 17:1-9). In turn, the Thessalonians received the gospel and believed this good news with joy despite afflictions and persecutions. Notably, the gospel then multiplied from those original believers. Paul colorfully writes that the gospel “sounded forth” (like a gong!) from the Thessalonians. Previously, they had walked in darkness and worshipped idols. Now, however, the gospel had changed them in a radical way, and they served the living and true God.

The gospel is glorious good news! It changes lives wherever it is embraced. People under wrath become people under mercy and grace. Our desire is to bring this powerful gospel to college students. When a young person begins following Christ and begins to win, build, and send others in Christ’s name, what kind of impact will they have for the next fifty years? How many others will hear this good news because of them? Therefore, what we do on campus is designed to help students hear the gospel, share the gospel, and train others to do the same since the gospel should impact lives. We long to see the gospel “sounding forth” from the campus to the world!

We serve with Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) on the campus of Indiana University. For the past 15 years, we have sought to proclaim Christ and help others do the same. Mark has led the missionary team as the Campus Director since 2012. The Lord has blessed us with three lovely girls – Kyla (8), Eden (6), and Selah (1).

Prayer: Please pray that we will be able to find new and spiritually interested students this Fall semester as the university lifts COVID restrictions.

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