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Our Speech Is Part Of Our Witness   By Mike Vincent, Ministry Fellow at CU Nova Do not grumble...
July 27, 2021

He Is Doing His Work One Student at a Time


Henri Nouwen, who authored such books as The Wounded Healer, The Way of the Heart, and The Return of the Prodigal Son, resigned from Harvard’s Divinity School in 1985 citing that God was dead at Harvard—that it was a spiritual desert.

god is not dead

Such words from such a renowned pastor-theologian didn’t bode well for Harvard’s campus. And yet, I am delighted to inform you that God is NOT dead at Harvard, and though much work has yet to be done, it is not a spiritual desert for many students. In the past couple of weeks, I have had the privilege of connecting with several alumni of Christian Union Gloria who have said that during their time as Harvard undergraduates, their walk with Christ blossomed along with their appetite for God’s Word—in direct correlation to the ministry and community at Christian Union!

Are you surprised? In all honesty, I wasn’t. And we shouldn’t be because that’s what God wants to do at one of the most secular universities in the world. This is what we pray for every day. It’s within this framework that we’re praying with great fervor that students continue to find God at Harvard, become Christ-centered disciples, and ultimately be world-changing leaders.  

In the past thirteen years, Christian Union Gloria and Christian Union Gloria Law have graduated students from their ministries who have gone on to establish themselves across the globe and in every sphere of work. They were lights at Harvard while they were here, holding out the hope of Christ and daily growing in their love for Him. But what I find equally encouraging and exciting is the thought that just one of these graduates with spiritual fervor can change the course of history, change the spiritual landscape of a nation, change their family or workplace forever. 

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In a small congregation in Northampton, England in the early 1790’s, William Carey said, “Expect great things from God. Attempt great things for God.” Robert Fuller, another preacher who was present for Carey’s sermon on that day was moved in later years to say, “I feel the use of his sermon to this day. Let us pray much, hope much, expect much, labor much; an eternal weight of glory awaits us!” 

In 1792, they both founded the Baptist Missionary Society, from which William Carey became their first missionary to India, where he served for the rest of his life. It was his missionary work that prompted another well-known English philanthropist and politician to proclaim it as “one of the chief glories” of the British nation. His name was William Wilberforce—the man who would champion the abolition of the slave trade.

One sermon would ultimately lead to the launch of a missionary movement and inspire a man with influence to change the landscape of the slave trade in his country. One work of God through one hearer of the Word. One faithful follower saying yes to the call of Christ on their life. 

One lunch. One Bible course. One prayer meeting. One discipleship meeting. One message at a retreat. When one student’s life is impacted, the ripple effect of God’s work may be immeasurable! That’s what we are praying for, every week. As Robert Fuller said, “Let us pray much, hope much, expect much, labor much…” because God is not dead at Harvard. All glory to Him!

Justin Yim is Christian Union's ministry director at Harvard Law School. 

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