my next bumper sticker

July 28, 2007

I was walking up to Target (from the “back 40” as Nebraska farmers say — do I ever get a close space at Target? Um, no) and saw this bumper sticker.

“What Would Scooby Do?”

That one has what I like to call residual laughter value. I’ll think of this in 5 days and laugh all over again.


insight: well-worn paths

July 10, 2007

Even though not officially a writer for our magazine anymore, I’m grateful that I’m asked to freelance once in a while.

The trip to Korea for to write about the conference would be an amazing example of that. (Ignore my immature WOOOOOO HOOOOO!!! here.)

Usually, my friend and editor, Becky, asks me to write a short article for the Insight portion of the magazine. It’s my favorite genre of writing because, in doing so, I often have to think more intentionally — and flesh out in a deeper way — what it means for me to walk with God.

And the writer actually becomes the learner.

Note: This Insight for the July/August issue actually began as a blog entry, so if you think you’ve seen it before that’s why. No fear that you’re experiening deja vu…all over again.

You can read my article here if you don’t get the magazine.

kahm-sa-hahm-ne-dah, Korea

July 7, 2007

Honey, I’m home! Thank you, Korea, for a wonderful 8 days on your soil, but I’m ready for my own bed tonight. Ah, tonight…there’s a long time to wage war against sleepy eyes until tonight.


The day before we flew out, we hailed a taxi and went to the famous Busan outdoor fish market for Tom to get more photos of the Korean culture to go alongside the article. We didn’t know what we were in for: octopi (would that be octopus in the plural?) and other fine sea creatures. Ah, the smells.

Simply gesture to the squid, eel or crab of your choice and they’ll cook it for you in the adjacent restaurant. We decided to pass.


A little street off the beaten path.


What’s your definition? Any lovers of Balderdash out there?

scattering back to the world

July 5, 2007

Last night marked the finale of the conference. Truly, what a glimpse of Heaven.

We got the official numbers in: 121 countries and 15,994 students and staff members.

God amazed me with the interviews He brought about for me with students from France, Nigeria, Russia and Brazil. The story is taking shape. Now, I just have to write it when I get home. 🙂


This has been our Jerusalem, of sorts, this last week. And now, just like Acts 1:8, we’re off to Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth.




A married staff couple from Albania. Every time I see people from Albania, or hear about the country, I flash back to 1996 when I signed up to go on a Campus Crusade spring break mission trip to Albania. Then, a war broke out and the plans changed, rerouting us to a country in the Middle East. Maybe one day I’ll go! Want to come with me?


At the Global Connexion Fair there were booths for every part of the world with information about the country and the need for Jesus-followers to labor there. This box was teeming with response cards filled out confirming, “Yes, I’d like more information about reaching Europeans for Christ.”


I couldn’t take my eyes off of this believer worshiping in front of me last night. Wow, what a challenge to praise God amidst adversity and circumstance and recognize He is still God and worthy of my worship.


Dr. Park, the national director of Campus Crusade in Korea, took time last night to share the message about how Jesus can save your life. I don’t know why that surprised me so much that he did that — and I was overwhelmed to be reminded of the need and that, in a crowd this size, there are college students who came as seekers and maybe even religious…but whom never said “yes” to Jesus to save them from their sins and give them new life.

Students poured down the aisles to the stage like a fast-flowing river, most with one or two believer friends with them, holding their hand or arms wrapped around them, in support of their friend’s life-changing choice.

Amazing. This week wasn’t just about believers being trained up to go out to the world, but for students to place their faith in Jesus for the first time. A moment I won’t ever forget.


Raised hands with cell phones.


On the subway going back to their dorm/condo/hotel after the last session.

pinch me — i’m in KOREA!

July 3, 2007

Another good, long day. I’m pooped. Not sure how CNN correspondents do it — and I’m not even a battle-torn location. I think the sheer volume of everything at this conference is catching up to me: 15,000 of everything…voices, meals, bodies, conversations, and opportunities.

A highlight today was an interview with Ese from Nigeria.

I walked by her and noticed her beautiful hair and caught a quick glance at her incredibly-large name tag and saw she was from Nigeria. The thought came to mind, “Go talk to her.” I hesitated, thinking that was a nice thought but…why? I already met a student from the continent of Africa so wasn’t really looking for another one.

She passed by and I moved on. After she left I thought how she looked like a staff woman I met when I’d traveled there 3 years ago.

I went upstairs and the moment I arrived — out of nowhere — Ese came around the corner. Um, yeah. LOVE it when God does crazy stuff like that!

I introduced myself and asked if she was a staff member. She said no, that she was a student, and we got to talking. In a few moments I knew this girl had passion and would be great to interview. We sat down and talked for about 30 minutes. What a find!


Standing in the corner of the room, this is the incredible view.


Would you call this guy a wanna-be Aussie Superman? Or just a student who really loves his country?


Imagine the logistics of feeding 15,000 students each day, 3 meals a day. I’m hoping this girl is servant-hearted and picked up meals for her 4 friends. She doesn’t exactly look like she’s packing away that much food regularly.


Lunch today. Not bad!


Kind of like the feeding of the 5,000 — multiplied by 3. Like how quickly I did the math?


A staff woman and student from Costa Rica I dined with for lunch.


A little known problem in Korea — the dust epidemic.


Even uniforms can’t put a damper on their cuteness.


How convenient to buy infant clothing off the side of a bike.


I took this especially for Rich and Joseph Street — future American firefighters. Koreans read right to left — think that’s why their emergency number is 119?

a little flag show

July 2, 2007


127 countries represented in the crowd. 192 flags paraded down the aisles in the parade of nations. The rest of the 12,000 Korean students arrived today. (And, yes, these people you see here aren’t Korean nor students. 🙂 It’s the “grown up” section, of sorts.)

There wasn’t an empty seat in the entire house. Students overflowed into the aisles.


A common scene at CM2007: a student grabs another student’s extremely oversized nametag and attempts to pronounce their name. I LOVE this guy’s shirt. He’s from the Republic of the Congo and his shirt has the crest of Campus Crusade all over it. Think JoAnn Fabrics carries that?

So the prayer request from last night didn’t quite get answered in the way I thought–it got answered for sure, but not in a group of 10-12. More like a group of 5 bus loads of students. Abundantly more than all I can ask or imagine, as it says in Ephesians. God has clearly gone before Tom and I on this trip.

I got 2 really great interviews today — one from Brazil and one from Liberia. (Yeah, go ahead and break out your atlas.) I’m not sure if I’d have met either of these students had plan A happened.

One of the coolest things to realize was how God answered my prayer about how to interview on the move. Instead of me moving, God put us on a moving boat so I could stand still and interview and write. How creative is He?


watch cm2007 online

July 1, 2007

Watch the main sessions! The internet broadcasts are posted a day or so afterwards.

It’s like you’re sitting next to me here in the crowd, only a little different. Your couch or computer chair is probably a little more comfortable. Feel free to stand up and sing along, though.