Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Reflections on being a CU Rep

Needless to say, you can love people without leading them, but you cannot lead people without loving them. - John Maxwell

This is our real "Program": faith in Christ, fellowship with Christ, faithfulness to Christ, fruitfulness for Christ. - Richard Baxter

Being at CU today was a real joy. As we looked at the resurrection in John, sang In Christ Alone, one of my all-time favourites (I guarantee you that if human history lasts that long, this one will be around for centuries to come), and then got dragged to the bar to embarrass myself at the pool table, I'm truly grateful to God and OICCU for entrusting me with the job of leading the college CU (or repping, to use the jargon).

At the same time, it is with excitement that I am passing the baton in a couple of week's time.

Let me briefly explain the structure of OICCU, which is often so confusing to outsiders. Quite simply, because Oxford University is a collegiate university(only Cambridge can truly be said to be comparable), we have both college groups, that is, the college CU, which is part of OICCU, which is quite simply all the college CUs together, and the central entity. There is an executive committee - many past presidents have gone on to serve God in pastoral ministry and in the mission field, you might recognise a few famous names! - and college groups are led by Reps.

I still remember that feeling of incredulity when I was first asked to consider repping. Firstly, those moving on to their third years aren't normally considered, although it's by no means uncommon, and secondly, well, me? At the same time, it was certainly pretty exciting. Let's face it, our motives are rarely pure, so there was some internal chest-beating going on because deep inside you're actually thinking I'm soooo mature. I have been asked to be Rep! My holiness quotient's above average! (You soon learn that what has actually happened is that your IQ dropped by several points, hence the delusional state.)

So despite not touching a drop of alcohol, I probably was sloshed, because I accepted. (Rationalization: drunk in the Holy Spirit. Yep, that's it. It was the Holy Ghost.) Note to others considering leadership positions in the future: the proper way to go about is to pray about it, talk with others, and look at your own gifts. The proper way is NOT to get high, say yes impulsively, and then claim that it was those pesky voices in your head that told you to do it.

[To be continued]

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