What are we trying to do in Cru? “Oh, not very much…we’re only trying to change a person’s whole reason for existing.” That’s what my friend Bob Francis used to say.

In all the years Malisa and I have been working with Cru reaching college students, we’ve realized that there is a critical moment when a student or staff person gets to share the gospel and when we get to see students’ lives changed for all eternity across the table from us.

Everything we’re trying to do in Cru here in Boston revolves around helping our staff and students have more conversations that can change their whole reason for existing. We call these “Gospel Conversations,” and we want to have lots more of them.

As you may know one of the strategies we have used for a number of years to increase the chances of “gospel conversations” with freshmen is to have upperclassmen move back into freshmen dorms. It’s not a “cool” thing to do, but it’s so effective.


Above: Malisa – in the hat on the left – gathered with some of our key student leaders for an Insider Recruiting Dinner last week.
Last week, Malisa gathered a bunch of our students for an “Insider Recruiting Dinner.” We want them to consider living in community close to freshmen so that they can have opportunities to demonstrate God’s love and share the gospel with students.

A few years ago, my friend Nick was a freshman and lived down the hall from our “Insiders.” There were dozens of gospel conversations over the course of the year. The summer after his freshman year, Nick started following Jesus.

Now Nick is a senior and he told the group, “If you think this doesn’t work, you’re wrong. Look at me.”

At the dinner, we also got to see students like Grace who lived near the insider floor of her dorm her freshman year, became an insider her sophomore year, and has been an RA the last two years to stay close to freshmen and share with them the love of Christ. Last year she began to have gospel conversations with Briony (an international student from Asia) who lived on her floor. Briony is now living as an insider herself and helping introduce others to Christ.

We’re motivated to have dinners like this for one reason: We want to change students’ whole reason for being. We want students to know Jesus.

We love having gospel conversations and helping others have gospel conversations. How about you? Have you had any fun gospel conversations lately? Shoot us an e-mail malisa.ellis@cru.org, brian.ellis@cru.org. We’d love to hear your stories and pray for you.

Loving our adventurous Lord,

Bonus News: A bigger family…

Just a couple weeks ago, we got some donuts from a fun local donut shop to share some fun news with our staff team: we’re having a 3rd baby girl this summer (due on the 4th of July). Malisa and I are surprised, excited, and a little overwhelmed!

Would you pray with us:

  • For Sam, Christian, Hannah, Melyna, Briony, and the couple dozen students who are considering moving back into freshman dorms as insiders next fall
  • For our involved students to have gospel conversations with floormates, classmates, and friends this semester
  • For Malisa and me as we continue to lead our team here in Boston
  • For Malisa and me as we get ready to welcome baby #3 this summer