Posted by: Brian Musser | July 11, 2016

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Posted by: Brian Musser | December 13, 2017

Prayer for Students during Final Exams at Drexel University

Dear Heavenly Father, Lord God Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth, Creator of All Things,

Lord, it is Finals week at Drexel again, please be with us.  First and foremost protect us.  Protect us from violence, from evil, from illness and even from ourselves.  More than anything else I pray that everyone makes it through this week unharmed.  We can recover from poor performances, lack of sleep, bad grades and damaged relationships but please protect us from those things that we can not recover from.  Get us through this week.  Help us to survive.



But as we are trying to survive I pray that we are able to thrive.  Give us rest.  Give us success.  Give us the ability to study well.  Help us to learn quickly and remember accurately.  Help us to not waste time on trivial information but to truly apply our minds to that knowledge which we will be evaluated on.  Help us to achieve the right answers on the first try.  Do not allow simple mistakes to cause hours worth of frustration.  And when we have to reproduce that which know help us to communicate it with precision.  Give us the ability to understand the questions and record our answers well.

Lord, help our stress levels.  Do not allow stress and anxiety to cloud our minds.  Do not allow nervousness to interfere with performance.  Give us a calm and a sense of peace.  But on the other hand allow there to be enough stress to motivate us to do the necessary work.  Do not allow us to fall into a false sense of security.  Give us the ability to be balanced.

And finally Lord, help us to know that we are valuable independent of our performance.  You love us and are invested in our lives outside of how well we do on these finals.  Do not allow us to questions our worth because of bad grades.  Help our grades to be a measure of what we can do but not a statement about who we are.  Give each one of us a sense that we are worth you love no matter our degree.  Jesus Christ’s death for our sins so that we can have a restored relationship with God is where our identity should be rooted and not in the grades we will get because of these finals.

And we pray all of these things in the strong name of Jesus Christ the one who defeated death, Amen.

Posted by: Brian Musser | November 13, 2017

Drexel Jedi Club

A local pastor brought some ministry friends of his from Arkansas to Philadelphia to see what types of ministries with which they could missionally partner.  One of their stops was to connect with me at Drexel.  We had a great time of talking about different ministry opportunities.  Then later that night they came to an outreach event we do on campus during Welcome Week called Campus Wide Worship (CWW).  CWW is a joint worship time for several of the Christian student organizations to join together in worship.  We do it outside in a very nice garden-esque part of the campus.  Often it one of the largest Christian events that we do on campus every year.  It is a great event in and of itself.


I’m not sure why but during the event one of visitors from Arkansas wandered away from the worship and started chatting with the Drexel Jedi Club that was practicing with their lightsabers about fifty yards away.  In case that last sentence hit you kind of funny let me confirm that information you may be wondering about.  Yes, we have a recognized student organization at Drexel that practices using lightsabers.  During his conversation our wanderer engages a girl from the Jedi Club in a very introductory spiritual conversation.  (Yes, there are girls in the Drexel Jedi Club.)  He later returns to our event and informs me about the conversation.


With that information, I talk to one of my Christian student leaders who is also a member of the Drexel Jedi Club.  He knows the girl personally and had made attempts to talk to her about Jesus, but was never able to find the right time or the right way to initiate the conversation.  His face lights up and immediately knows that following up on the conversation gives him the perfect way to talk to her.  So the next meeting of the Drexel Jedi Club he is able to follow-up and has a good conversation with her, and one other member of the group, and is hopefully certain that the conversation will continue.

Posted by: Brian Musser | November 8, 2017



Posted by: Brian Musser | November 6, 2017

Guess My Age

My presence on campus may not be exactly what you imagine.  Often the stereotype of a campus minister is just a slightly older youth group leader.  Arliss Dickerson (the grandmaster guru yoda of campus ministry) talks about the different seasons in a campus minister’s life starting with buddy or peer, moving to older brother, then father figure and ending with grandparent.

However; I never really fit into those categories.  First of all, I started campus ministry when I was 28 so I missed the peer season all together.  Secondly, even early on I spent a lot of ministry time with faculty, staff and administration so I would be professionally dressed instead of dressed like I was going to just hang out with students.  Third, because I was filling a professional role on campus sometimes students would view me as more of an administrator than a minister.  I remember one girl once say that she never expected to be my friend when she first met me just because of the first impression my role gave.  Fourth, I am “prematurely” grey so my age is really hard to judge.  Fifth, much of my ministry has been across ethnic lines so that just adds another layer of complexity to the cross-generational relationships.  And finally, I purposefully treat my college students as adults.  Drexel makes you grow up fast and my students tend to engage life as grown folk and not kids.

So students often have trouble trying to place me in a category.  This one time a couple of my student leaders were challenging one of our members to guess my age.  At first, she refused, but then she gave into the peer pressure.  She guessed my age at 45.  The two leaders who knew how old I actually was laughed out loud.  She got embarrassed imagining that she was very wrong.  So, one of the leaders corrected her saying I was 53.  She accepted that as right without hesitation.  But then I admitted to her that I was only 32 at that time.  To which she responded, “It’s really hard to guess ages across ethnic lines.”

I’m not sure I always relate to college students, but that doesn’t mean I can’t minister to them.

Posted by: Brian Musser | October 30, 2017

I No Longer Fit

As a ministry at Drexel, Disciples InDeed (DID) often uses an evangelism tool called Soularium to engage students in conversation.  Soularium is a set of 50 pictures that are used to answer questions.  There is a standard list of five questions that we typically ask but at times we get creative with the questions.  The typical questions (or prompts) are:

  • Pick three pictures that describe your life right now.
  • Pick three pictures that describe what you want your life to be like.
  • Pick an image that describes what comes to mind when someone says the word “God.” Even if you do not believe in God pick a picture that describes that.
  • Pick an image that describes your spiritual journey up until this point.
  • Pick an image that describes what you wish was true of your spiritual life.

Soularium is a great tool to engage students in spiritual conversations and creates many opportunities to transition those conversations into Gospel presentations.

There is not a perfect tool, but Soularium does some really good things.  It helps Christian students listen and learn about their peers.  It gives students opportunities to think and talk about parts of their lives that are not part of everyday conversation.  Using images help students answer abstract questions.  If I were to ask a Drexel student what they thought about God most would answer, “Ummm.”  Asking Drexel students to answer that question and giving them 50 images to choose from is a much more tangible process for them.  I’ve seen friendship develop through Soularium conversations and ultimately many of these conversations are able to be transitioned into the Gospel with Christian students leading their peers to Christ.

I remember this one particular time I was using Soularium.  It was during a summer orientation fair for incoming freshmen.  We were positioned in a long corridor with 150 other student organizations vying for these incoming freshmen’s attention.  It was a very loud environment with the Chemistry club making ice cream, Rec sports having the entire rowing team there and fraternities creating a hoopla.  It was not the perfect environment to have conversations.  But we were using Soularium anyways.

This one young pre-freshmen girl approaches the table and we begin the survey.  As an answer to one of the questions she points to a picture of a teenager crammed into a high school locker.  I ask her why did she pick that picture.  “Because I no longer feel like I fit into my parent’s religion.”  First of all, the self-awareness and depth of that comment is extraordinary.  Second, I was surprised by how quickly the student was willing to share real information with me about her life while she was basically shouting her answers to me.  Usually Soularium is a 5 question survey, but when answers come back that are perfect entry points into a deeper conversation, the survey fades away and the unscripted conversation becomes paramount.

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