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Christian Union: The Magazine
December 23, 2020
The Most Important Habit; Thinking of Penn As An Unreached People Group; The Surprising Ministry of Encouragement; Join 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting for 2021; Through a Looking Glass Darkly and more, in this issue of Christian Union's bi-monthly email brief.
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For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
—  Isaiah 9:6


Rethinking Missions and Missionaries

Merry Christmas! As the New Year approaches and we thank the Lord for His goodness — even in what was a difficult year for many — please help  more students and professionals hear the gospel, respond, and grow in their love for Christ, through an end-of-year gift to Christian Union.

Please give today >

The Most Important Habit

By Fady Ghobrial
From YouTube
02 fadyMost Christians would admit that their prayer life could be better. Many have good intentions but don’t know how to use their time with God. Many want to increase the time they spend with God but are not sure how to fill that time. In October, Christian Union Ministry Fellow Fady Ghobrial  gave this very practical talk on how to spend time with Jesus. He talks about different and creative ways to read the Bible and pray. Listen to this recording to get equipped to take your daily time with God to the next level.

Watch Now >

Thinking of Penn As An Unreached People Group

By Ben Zeisloft
From The Penn Epistle
Ben Zeisloft is a current Penn student and leader within Christian Union Martus, CU's ministry at Penn. Zeisloft wrote this article for the Penn Epistle, a blog founded by another CU Martus member, Sydney Sun, as a place for students to challenge one another to follow the Lord at Penn. In this article, Zeisloft argues that Penn is an "unreached people group."

"Many missionary organizations will label a people group as 'unreached' or 'least-reached' if less than five percent of its members profess Christianity. The culture of the United States is no longer an 'Acts 2' culture—one that generally professes religion in a nominal sense—but an 'Acts 17' culture, marked by unawareness of Christianity’s most basic truths.

"Our friends [at Penn] broadly fall into this 'Acts 17' category. The Barna Group estimates that only four percent of Generation Z—those born between 1999 and 2015—have a Christian worldview. Consider the additional factor of many Penn students hailing from nations outside of the gospel’s reach, and this percentage may be even lower on our campus. We would do well to recognize our present mission—proclaiming Christ to an unreached people group."

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The Surprising Ministry of Encouragement

By Ray Ortlund
From Desiring God
04 ortlundI think about the ministry of encouragement a lot, but not as much as I should. My friend Murray Harris, the New Testament scholar, said to me once, “Encouragement is one of the most important ministries in the church of the New Testament.” Our biblical authenticity is at stake here — whether we are overflowingly encouraging to one another.

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Join 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting for 2021

Great moves of God are always preceded by large numbers of Christians repenting of sins, praying, fasting and seeking God’s face for His will (2 Chronicles 7:13-14). Sign up to join Christian Union Day and Night and thousands of American Christians to draw near to God, that He will draw near to us (James 4:8). The fast runs January 4-24. Each participant will receive a daily written email devotional from CU Day and Night, as each person decides what kind of fast to take throughout the 21 days.

Learn More or Sign Up Today > 

Through a Looking Glass Darkly

By Jessica Hooten Wilson
From Comment
06 wilsonWhen I was a little girl, my favourite book was Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. As much as I disliked cats, the Cheshire Cat defied all expectations with his wisdom. Alice is lost in the woods, exiled in a world that she does not recognize, so she addresses the good-natured-looking Cat: “Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?” Perched in a tree above her and sporting a wide grin full of teeth, the Cat answers, “That depends a good deal on where you want to go.” Alice responds, “I don’t much care where—” and the Cat interrupts, “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.” This seemingly childish and fantastical conversation sums up rather well the modern problem—both individuals and the communities in which they participate move forward without a sense of direction.

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Prayer Requests

Join us in praying for our students over their Christmas break. Many of them have struggled with isolation and loneliness throughout the semester. Pray that the Lord would be their source of comfort and joy in this season and that they would intentionally stay connected to Christian community while they are at home.

Please pray with us that by God’s mercy New Yorkers will find the true light of the world this Christmas season. “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.” -‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭9:2‬ We have no hope apart from Jesus. Come, Lord Jesus. Accompany us with your palpable presence that Your work may spread across our land.


Praise God for the gift of His Son— the way, truth, and life! May His name be exalted in all the earth and His glory be revealed in our nation. Pray that Christians across America would die to self and live for the glory of His name.

Talk Back

Thank God for the way that his Church throughout the nation embraced repentance and prayer through CU Day and Night’s "Seeking God in September" and "The Return" and "Prayer March" in Washington D.C. Pray for the Lord to work these ideals into American Christians even more until we are fully alive for Christ.