“I thought about the former days, the years of long ago; I remembered my song in the night. My heart meditated and my spirit asked: ”Will the Lord reject forever? Will he never show his favor again? Has his unfailing love vanished forever? Has his promise failed for all time? Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has he in anger withheld his compassion?” Then I thought, “To this I will appeal: the years when the Most High stretched out his right hand. I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.” Your ways, God, are holy. What god is as great as our God? You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples. With your mighty arm you redeemed your people, the descendants of Jacob and Joseph….Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen.”
I will remember and never forget. I will remember the beginning. I will remember the mighty hand of God that brought this nation about, and it is His hand that will lead us back. I will remember the heritage our fathers gave their lives for. And I will remember the wells of revival in this land. I will remember His miracles of long ago, His mighty deeds of old.
Ten days into this tour, and I already have more hope in my heart for America than ever before. We’ve visited Harvard, MIT, University of New Hampshire, Yale, West Point, Penn State, University of Pittsburgh, Duquesne University, Ohio State, Mt. Vernon Nazarene University, and Ohio Northern University. Each campus has it’s own history and it’s own story, but one common thread is HOPE. There is hope for a move of the Spirit, there is hope for a fresh outpouring of faith, and there is hope for revival.
I want to sum-up for you all what is happening at the Ivy Leagues; both what God is doing and the different struggles I sensed in each school through prayer and listening to what students had to say.
Praying in front of Memorial Church at Harvard
We started off this journey at Harvard University. A place whose very motto is “Veritas”, “Truth”. And that is really what’s at stake on that campus. They have exchanged the truth of God for a lie, the truth of God for the comfort of relativity. There are no longer any absolutes, and for the sake of “tolerance”, truth dies daily.
Lauren, from CA, wants to be a testimony to the Lord by stewarding her talents well. She’s studying Mathematics and feels called to be a missional student to her peers at MIT.
After Harvard, we headed over to MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). “Works equals Worth” is the defining issue on that campus. The students struggle with insecurities, depression, anxiety, and suicide because their “identity” is based on their performance. When you grew up being the smartest kid in school and then are all of a sudden thrust into an environment where you’re not the genius anymore, how do you cope? Where do you find your worth and identity? We talked with a lot of students at MIT and all of them identified this as the biggest struggle at their school. However, we did meet several students who are believers and are actively involved in ministry on their campus. It was really encouraging hearing their different stories of how God had guided each of their steps to MIT, and they felt called to be missional students to their peers.
The Chapel at Yale Divinity School, where we had a 9/11 memorial service.
Yale was the last Ivy League university we visited, and it seemed that our day spent there was a culmination of everything God had been showing us that week. Yale was founded in 1701 by a group of ministers who had grown so frustrated with how liberal Harvard had become. It wasn’t called Yale then, of course, but rather the Collegiate School. The ministers donated forty books and declared their objective, that “Youth may be instructed in the Arts and Sciences who through the blessing of God may be fitted for Public employment both in Church and Civil State.” The huge campus of today, with over one hundred buildings was not conceived. In fact, the first classes were held in the residence of Rev. Abraham Pierson, its first rector. Not until 1745 was the school moved to New Haven and renamed Yale. The name change was in honor of Elihu Yale, a successful merchant who made a donation of goods valued at $2,800. This was equivalent to the annual income of about fourteen medical doctors. The purpose of the renamed school was “To plant and under ye Divine blessing to propagate in this Wilderness, the blessed Reformed, Protestant Religion, in ye purity of its Order and Worship.” Students were required to “live religious, godly and blameless lives according to the rules of God’s Word, diligently reading the Holy Scriptures, the fountain of light and truth; and constantly attend upon all the duties of religion, both in public and secret.” Prayer was a requirement. Furthermore every student was instructed to “…consider the main end of his study to wit to know God in Jesus Christ” and “to lead a Godly, sober life.” For many years these high ideals were followed. One faculty member wrote around 1800, “It would delight your heart to see how the trophies of the cross are multiplied in this institution. Yale College is a little temple: prayer and praise seem to be the delight of the greater part of the students.”
The Foyer inside of Harvard’s Memorial Church
Yale’s Memorial Chapel where we had a powerful time of prayer and worship.
Moriah is one of the students we met at University of New Hampshire. She’s on fire for God and so eager to share the love of Jesus on her campus!
I want to throw in a quick testimony from University of New Hampshire. Two of the students we were able to connect with there asked Emily and I to pray over them, one already spoke in tongues and the other wanted to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We prayed together and the girls were both filled with fresh faith and so much joy! I walked away from that just thankful for the opportunity to pray over them and for their boldness to come up and ask for more of the Spirit! A couple days later, one of the girls messaged me saying she had attended a worship service that weekend and she spoke in tongues for the first time! She was so grateful for our prayers and so excited for this new chapter in her walk with Jesus!
As we continue this journey, I am full of expectancy and fresh faith for what God is going to release across America’s college campuses. I know that He hears us when we pray, and when we pray God moves! I want to give testimony to His faithfulness and glory to His name! The Spirit of God is alive and moving in my generation. We will keep crying out for the fullness of who He is!