“This is WAU” - A Commitment to “Be”

Author: Cheryl Kisunzu, Provost, Washington Adventist Univ
September 14, 2016

Phelps, “Simone and Simone”, “The Final Five,” Gaby Douglas … Usain Bolt – these are names which continue to inspire our hearts even though weeks have passed since the 2016 Rio Olympic games… for these are the names of Champions.  These are athletes who chose not just to qualify for competition but to be medal winners, record setters - even  the “benchmark” for competitors and  residents around our  world.  Yet, I suggest to you that as significant as these accomplishments are, as we complete these first three weeks of our 2016-2017 academic year, names like Jessica, Randy, Maria, Hussain and Stephanie inspire  our  hearts, for these are the names of our Washington Adventist University (WAU) students. They are individuals who have also chosen to “BE” all that they are called to be, as were Esther, Joseph, Lydia and David of old.

Defined by Webster as a verb which means to “exist” and to “truly live,” our students have chosen this word “BE” as their theme for this academic year. They have fully embraced their calling  to “BE TOGETHER,” to “BE FREE,” to “BE IMMOVABLE,” such that they are not to conform to the things of this world, but so that they will BE TRANSFORMED by the renewing of their minds (Rom 12:2), in a manner that prepares them for ten times distinctive service (Daniel 1:20) … as salt and light for our world – ever Anointed and Empowered with the Fragrance of Christ’s Love (Matthew 5). While many of you will not encounter these amazing adults as teachers in their classrooms, I invite you to strengthen them as they “run to win, the race set before them” through your intercessions on their behalf.

One of the pictures of Christ that I hope will inspire your heart to embrace this calling is that which is recorded for our admonition in Hebrews 7:25. Here Paul more fully unwraps the significance of intercessory prayer.  Here he describes the powerful reality that Christ, as our High Priest, ever lives to strengthen us through prayer, ”for He lives to intercede for us”. Therefore, since we are also called to this priesthood, won’t you join me this year in carrying our students and university on your hearts through ongoing intercession as we embrace our calling to “BE” moving ever upward, never downward, to “BE” the head and not the tail, to “BE” a lender to many nations and never a borrower and to “BE” that brightly burning light among the Gentiles, more and still more (Philippians 1:9). Thank you on behalf of our students, faculty and staff for  walking beside us, more than ever, through your intercession – “My Hopes for This Place are High” (1904)!!!



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