But I serve the staff members of InterVarsity/USA who train and develop 35,000 US college students each year. These students learn who Jesus was, what he did, what it means for us, how to share that with others, and how to engage positively with every sector of society. And they send up doing great things in education, business, politics, media, families, the Church, and elsewhere.
But we are small potatoes compared to the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES). The IFES is a group of movements similar to InterVarsity. Based in Oxford, IFES movements serve in all but 16 countries of the world (and that number is decreasing). Between all the sister movements (including InterVarsity in the US), we serve half a million students, 500,000.
When you consider the global population of six billion (six thousand million, folks), half a million doesn’t sound all that grand. But the 500,000 young leaders that are serving together to offer good news to their fellow students graduate and head out, just like InterVarsity students in the US.
They lead families.
They lead businesses.
They lead universities.
They lead churches.
They lead neighborhoods.
They lead countries.
And they lead in the style and model of Jesus, as servants, to increase human flourishing, justice, grace, truth, love, beauty, and joy.
I am en route to the World Assembly of this International Fellowship of Evangelical Students. While I’ve lived and served in Nicaragua, China, and South Africa, my exposure to the IFES is very limited. For the next 10 days, I’ll be hearing stories of these 500,000 students and those that have gone before them, from all around the Earth.
I am small. But I’m happy to be part of something big.