Imagine living with a group of 18-20 college students from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds and values, including students who have primarily been immersed in ethnic-specific fellowships, and those who have experienced only ethnic-specific fellowships; students who mainly identify as extroverts and those who mostly see themselves as introverts; those who don’t mind being late and those who value punctuality.
Now, imagine this group of vastly different individuals doing a simple and sometimes tension-filled task: coming together to plan and budget meals for one week, during which students become frustrated, disengaged, and confused.
In case you have not realized yet, I have been describing my SAUP (San Antonio Urban Project) community, a group of people with a big heart for Jesus and good yet different values that can sometimes clash with each other. Together, we have done activities and tasks that have taught us more about each other and ourselves and created joyous and frustrating moments. These things include doing activities that reveal our personalities, driving to sites together while being anxious about being unpunctual and geographically lost, recognizing during our meetings about budgeting and food that not everyone grows up eating the same things, and meeting potentially life-long friends that share the same spiritual backgrounds and personalities.
Throughout these six weeks, I pray that God will growing our hearts and transform us so that we can become a community-centered SAUP family that gives the Good News to our neighborhoods and witness God transforming San Antonio for His Kingdom. In order to become such a community, we need to be one that is willing to learn about each other’s cultures and upbringing and engage with them in a grace-filled and Spirit-filled way. I pray that we can do this in all parts of our lives so that we be filled with the Spirit and grace as we witness and spread God’s love in San Antonio. I hope that you can join us in praying for our SAUP community and San Antonio.