Steve Douglass serves as president of Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ International) >>, a ministry which is active in a wide variety of forms in 190 countries.
What is the main focus of your ministry and why are you passionate about it?
I seek to help Cru stay true to its calling and be helpful to other organizations. I believe the fulfillment of the Great Commission is within the grasp of the Body of Christ, if we work together. God is passionate about reconciling people to himself—so much so that he is moving in remarkable ways today. The Church in China has grown 100 times in the last 60 years. Tens of millions have responded to Christ in India in the last 15 years. People are seeing dreams about Jesus in the Middle East. Christians are praying and planning fervently toward the soon fulfillment of the Great Commission. I am excited to be part of all that!
What does evangelism mean to you?
Evangelism involves helping people come to know the Father through the forgiveness of sin provided by Jesus. Certainly, we must present the message of salvation through Christ and challenge people to respond. However, I think effective evangelism needs to connect well in light of barriers and follow through well to achieve good understanding and commitment. For example, the evangelistic response rate to the JESUS film increased dramatically when we developed and used follow-up films in India.
Tell a story of how you shared your faith in Christ and saw God woo an individual one step closer to himself.
On one occasion, I boarded a plane, took my aisle seat, and made an urgent phone call to a co-worker. About ten minutes into the intense call, a woman and her daughter came up to me and pointed to the middle and window seats. I got up and let them take their seats. When I hung up, the woman asked, “What do you do?” I explained and gave her a copy of my book, Enjoying Your Walk with God. When she saw the cover of the book, her eyes widened and she said to me, “God must have put you in this seat next to me! I need to talk to you!” Within 30 minutes, she was praying and asking Christ into her life.
What is your favourite quote/scripture?
Ephesians 3:20: “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us.”
How can people learn more about you and your ministry?
Visit the Cru website >>. Follow me on Facebook >> or on Twitter >>. We also have monthly newsletter posts >>.
ABOUT THE WORLD
What is the biggest issue that the Church in your part of the world faces today and why?
In his book UnChristian, David Kinnaman (president of the Barna Group) cites the following concerning the opinion of “outsiders” in America ages 16-29. When asked if they were favorable toward evangelicals, those that knew of evangelicals were only 3% favorable and 49% unfavorable. That is a huge barrier to doing evangelism in the U.S. and to seeing new believers assimilate into local churches identified as evangelical.
What is the biggest issue the Global Church is facing today and why?
I don’t think we are taking full advantage of the resources God has entrusted to us. There is a large potential workforce of true followers of Jesus around the world. They need to be challenged and equipped better. In addition, leaders of strong Christian churches, denominations, and ministries need to find even better ways to work together—inspiring, encouraging, and helping one another.
What is your hope for the Global Church in the next ten years?
Notwithstanding the issues above, I think the Great Commission is within reach for the Body of Christ. For example, I see better uses of the Internet and other digital means. I see tremendous growth of the Church in many places, as I mentioned earlier. In some circles, I see the setting aside of ego and logo in order to help fulfill the Great Commission. More than anything, however, I sense deep within my spirit that God is calling us to trust him more as he picks up the pace to advance his kingdom on earth.