12 January 2009

Today's Treat

No - not that. I'm trying to lose weight, remember?

Nope, today's treat was of the calorie-free variety, but almost as sweet. I just got off the phone from a long conversation with a campus ministry alum here at Iowa State. He and his wife were married in our building, lived in the student apartment (back when it was an apartment and not just a room) and he served as the ISU Lutheran Student Association president for a year or two. We talked for roughly twenty minutes about campus ministry, what it's like for me being here, how things have changed since his time as a student, and how he and his wife could help us financially with some basic ministry needs.

One of the things that most concerned me when I accepted this call was the necessity of fundraising for campus ministry. Frankly, I despise the use of the "f-word" in relation to our ministry here; I much prefer to call it "Stewardship." But one of my bosses says that what we're actually doing is FRIEND-raising, and though the term is a little cutesy for my taste, I understood what he meant when he first mentioned it to me. After today's conversation, I think I can do it, too.

Was the phone call about a significant financial gift? Well, yes, that was part of our conversation. But the far sweeter treat was the chance to talk with someone who thinks enough of campus ministry to support our work, 50 years after his own time in our ministry. He asked me to greet "all my fellow students that I haven't met yet" the next time we get together, and you know, I'm going to do just that. Simply put, this fellow gets why we're here, and he wants to help make sure we stay here for a while, and that's a treat.

The other part of these kinds of treats is this: I get to start making calls to our supporters next week, to thank them for their gifts to our ministry. We're going to get students to make some of the calls, also, which I think will be a real treat for them. I wonder if maybe this will be the place where some of our students start to learn what the "cloud of witnesses" is all about - if so, that'd be a treat, too.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go try and think about something other than hot fudge sundaes for a while - finding that picture set my mouth a-watering.