Last week Campus Crusade for Christ officially changed their name to "Cru" and some believers flipped out over it. It was all over twitter, facebook – heck, I even saw it reported on the news channels. It was controversy at its finest (not really).
The gist is everyone freaked out because they were removing Christ from their name. Truthfully, it IS a little shocking – after all, why would an organization that is known for boldly proclaiming the name of Christ and reportedly has won 37,900 new souls for Christ over the last five years do such a thing? It must be because since their founder, Bill Bright died a few years ago they have taken a more liberal turn, right? One thing I've learned through the years is to give people the benefit of the doubt and not jump to conclusions too quickly, especially people with great track records.
Not surprisingly, from Campus Crusade's website:
“Anyone who knows anything about Campus Crusade for Christ knows we are passionate about one thing – connecting people to Jesus Christ,” noted president Steve Douglass. “In fact, we only exist for the purpose of helping people everywhere experience the transforming grace and forgiveness of the gospel through God’s Son, Jesus Christ.
"We were not trying to eliminate the word Christ from our name. We were looking for a name that would most effectively serve our mission and help us take the gospel to the world. Our mission has not changed. Cru enables us to have discussions about Christ with people who might initially be turned off by a more overtly Christian name. We believe that our interaction and our communication with the world will be what ultimately honors and glorifies Christ."
Why do Christian people automatically assume the worst about ministries? I have seen this since the very early days of my ministry. People automatically assuming anything someone said about a pastor or a church was true. "The preacher did such and such!" said the gossip to another gossip – "HE DID?!?" to which she/he told another – always assuming the worst about a church or the man God called. It's happened to me. It's happened to my former church and pastor friends. It happens to Vertical. They Assume.
I know I share this verse often but I remind you once again,  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12 ESV) Your ministry IS NOT to point out what you think is wrong with everyone elses. The battle isn't against people – but against the spiritual powers which wage against us. We need to watch the friendly fire because the wrong people are taking the hits.
People have done the same thing to Cru. Maybe instead of jumping to conclusions or filling in the blanks by ourselves, maybe we should actually research the things people are saying before we assume the worst. I think this tweet says it all:
@jerryriendeau: When Kentucky Fried Chicken changed it's name to KFC, I wonder if they were accused of abandoning chicken. #csu2011 #cru
Here's a suggestion: next time someone begins to talk badly about another Christian, pastor, church or organization, flee from that conversation as quickly as possible and research for yourself whether these allegations are true.
Why don't Christians see that they totally shoot their own? Let's quit assuming because you know what the word assume stands for, right?
(and for more info on the Cru name change check out this link from their website)