TERRY ESAU ’78
Musician, Author and Speaker
On April 6, Terry Esau ’78 shared a message on “Breathing Lessons”— inhaling God’s love and being able to exhale it to others, rather than taking a big gulp of spiritual air on Sundays and holding our breath, waiting for another spiritual inhale. “We aren’t called to be cul-de-sacs of His love,” Esau challenged.
Esau was part of the first class on the Roseville campus in 1972. Known as the “jingle king of Minneapolis,” the music education major wrote his first jingle for a music theory assignment and later pitched his work to help pay for school. He built a successful career writing thousands of commercial jingles for hundreds of clients, from Target to Honda to Golden Grahams.
But several years ago God made him restless and he transitioned to promoting the one thing he knew would change people’s lives—a relationship with Jesus Christ. “Before, I was convincing people to buy something—and quite often it was something they didn’t need and maybe didn’t want,” said Esau.
In 2005, Esau launched Surprise Me, a 30-day faith experiment that records the surprising ways God reveals Himself.“This isn’t a test for God,” he shared with students. “This is a test for us to be aware of what He’s doing.”
Surprise Me and Be the Surprise form the “Breathing Lessons” concept he shares today with churches, colleges and organizations.
BRENDA SALTER McNEIL
Preacher, Evangelist, Author
“What time is it, Northwestern?” That’s the question Brenda Salter McNeil, D.Min, asked the chapel audience on April 5.A preacher, evangelist, author and scholar-in-residence at North Park University (Illinois), Salter McNeil spoke on Luke 19:41–44, Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. “Jesus…instead of being elated by their praise, is weeping because His people cannot tell time”—the time of the Lord’s coming.
She explained the two concepts of time in Greek: chronos (chronological) and kairos (“the divine time, not humanly governed”), the latter used in verse 44. She shared how Jerusalem missed their kairos moment because they were looking for someone else and they liked things the way they were. “Jesus really believes He’s the Lord,” she declared, “He will not be choreographed by us. Sometimes we don’t see Jesus in the people He sends to us because He doesn’t look the way we think He will.
“We’re on the precipice of another kairos time today. Everything around us is signaling a shift.” She challenged students not to miss their kairos moment today. “Kairos time demands a decision.”
For the Faith & Thought Lecture Series she encouraged the audience to view the economic and cultural shifts in today’s world not as catastrophes but as catalytic events under God’s control that He is using as opportunities for the Gospel.
International Justice Mission
Wayne Barnard, Ph.D., is director of student ministries for International Justice Mission, a Washington, D.C.-based organization that works with child labor, widows, orphans, those trapped in prostitution and other people who are living without an advocate.
In his message Barnard talked to students about not letting the enormity of the job to be done—addressing the problems and needs of our world— keep them from taking action.
Barnard reminded the students, “The need is so massive and we feel so small… our lack of courage is His opportunity for glory.”
Barnard also believes students are uniquely positioned to have a major impact on the future.
“Students create movements that literally change the world,” he said. “You have a dream of what it should be.I want you to dream, but then I want you to do.”
Dave Ramsey Speakers Group
Rachel Cruze is a speaker with the Dave Ramsey financial education organization. The second of Ramsey’s three children, Cruze is uniquely positioned to share the financial principles taught by her father. As “a Ramsey kid,” Cruze learned the basic principles of money at an early age as her parents taught her how to save, spend and give—valuable lessons she uses in everyday life.
“God owns it all—and we are just the managers,” Cruze shared. “We have to remember that and manage our relationship with stuff.” She also encouraged students to make a plan for their money and said that living on a budget is not nearly as painful in the long run as living without one.
In a later interview, Cruze noted that choosing a private college may mean taking out student loans. The problem is, she noted, “people graduate and don’t think about loans until the end of the grace period.”
She encourages students to work as much as they can, purposely save during college for the transition to pay down the debt, and avoid any additional debt, such as credit cards, at all costs.
Former Wal-Mart strategist
On March 1, Bill Marquard spoke to students at a special break-out chapel, visited a business class and later presented on campus to local business leaders on Leadership in the New Economy.
Marquard was the architect of Wal-Mart’s first-ever strategic planning process and in 2007 wrote the book Wal-Smart: What It Really Takes to Profit in a Wal-Mart World. He owns Marble Leadership Partners, Inc., a consulting firm focusing on executive coaching and strategic planning.
Marquard talked about smart choices any business must make to excel in today’s economy. He also explained the how and why of integrating faith and business and concluded with the importance of a business model that combines profit and social responsibility.