the ol’ switcheroo

On Monday, I boldly identified my Itinerary for the rest of the summer:

It looks specifically like Louisville/Lexington, Nashville, Missouri, Oklahoma, Lubbock, Denver/C. Springs, and Phoenix/Tucson are all in the mix of possible locations… yep, in the next 6 weeks or so. Maybe not all, and maybe not in that order. And God may add some new spots, too.

At the time, I planned to leave Tuesday for Memphis and then move on to Louisville/Lexington/Nashville from there. But things went according to my 6-week schedule for about a day and a half. It appears the note about God adding new spots was… true.

Tuesday evening, I made it out of Monroe, Louisiana, as planned.

Tuesday night, I booked a motel in Cleveland, Mississippi, as planned.

And then TV changed everything.

I was pretty worn out Tuesday night (what else is new?), and all I wanted to do before sleeping was watch TV – BUT I knew I needed to get some things done. So I figured a good compromise was to leave the TV on and wander through some old web pages that I had opened but hadn’t actually read yet. (I’ve got about a million of those open-but-not-processed web pages at this point…)

One of those pages – open for months, actually – was for a group called Campus Ministry United. Recently, one of their organizers had left a comment on the blog about something I wrote, so that had reminded me once more to check out CMU. But besides that mental note, I had done little to explore this Campus Ministry organization’s site.

So when one the first web pages I looked at that night was the CMU page, I decided to go ahead and check it out. And what to my wandering eyes did appear, but a college ministers’ workshop, scheduled 2 days later, for college ministers from throughout the Churches of Christ. It would be held at Harding University, not too far from the very Memphis area I was headed.

A gathering of one Christian tradition’s college ministers, gathering to discuss ministry wisdom AND their unique view of Collegiate Ministry within their own church-based and campus-based ministries? When my whole year is about getting as broad a view as I can of Evangelical Collegiate Ministry across the country? Located at one of the Churches of Christ’s “Mecca” campuses? When God had allowed me to discover the event just in time? When I heard from a new buddy, a CMU organizer, only a few weeks previous? And ALL THIS for only $35?

It didn’t take long – through prayer and thought – for me to know this was a good thing to participate in. I emailed the organizer, and he was happy for me to join ’em.

In fact, on the way out here, I got to visit another minister – one of our SBC college ministry heroes, Arliss Dickerson. (I had already hoped to come out there from Memphis, but this worked out even more brilliantly!)

So once more, it was the old Road Trip switcheroo, brought about by God’s amazing Providence. As you may remember, this isn’t the first time on this trip. And it has been a wonderful time here in Arkansas with some new friends.

So, there’s the update! As always, the Itinerary is well-updated with every exploration I’ve experienced, and it can help make sense of this crazy trip so far – even its awesome little hiccups in the middle of “my plans.”

Written from the Campus Ministry United Workshop at Harding University, Searcy, Arkansas.

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