By Hannah Stafford, News Editor

Asbury’s 2016-2017 Executive Cabinet (EC) has a new theme. The EC is made up of seven individuals, each leading/representing a different aspect of student life on campus. This year’s EC members are Matt Young, the vice president of student governance, Lizzy Sherwood, the vice president of student activities, Zach Jeffcoat, the vice president of spiritual life, Kelsey Ferrell, secretary, Lael Shields, publicist, Elizabeth Byrd, treasurer and Matthew Jackson, student body president. After much thoughtful prayer and consideration, they arrived at their theme for this year: Equipped for Quality.

“The theme was chosen after each member of our team shared his/her vision for ASC with one another,” said Jackson. “We united under the passage Colossians 3, and knew that the theme of putting on the qualities like Christ was the core vision. With this, we wanted to choose an active phrase and the concept of ‘Equipped for Quality’ came from these conversations.”

Colossians 3 speaks of a change in lifestyle and holy living in order to obtain freedom and Christ-like quality in everyday life.

“Therefore as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience,” verse 12 says. Verse 13 and 14 continue: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you have a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”

While neither theme was chosen with the other in mind, VP of Spiritual Life Zach Jeffcoat sees a strong connection between the chapel theme “Become” and the EC theme “Equipped for Quality.”

“I like to think of ‘Equipped for Quality’ as like a step in ‘Become’ — but not a small one,” Jeffcoat said. “In the process of ‘Become,’ we are going to stumble — it’s a part of the human experience — but we often stumble over not knowing how to ‘Become.’ Good News! God has given us a road map in ‘Becoming.’ It’s written all over the Bible, and Colossians 3:12-15 is just one great example.”

EC’s Student Development Representative Paul Stephens agreed.

“The theme functions on two levels,” said Stephens. “First, as a community we very practically pursue excellence in all things. Second, that we allow Colossians 3 to manifest across our community. That is, we together allow our new life in Christ to take hold of all aspects of our individual and corporate lives. The chapel theme of ‘Become’ is inextricably parallel to this focus and charge.”

Jackson believes that the new theme encompasses that message and places a healthy challenge on Asburians to seek the Kingdom of God while discovering and developing their calling in life. Jeffcoat elaborated on that:

“We hope that we will see students embrace a life of devoted love and service to Christ where they seek to do everything as if unto the Lord (to paraphrase Colossians 3:17),” Jeffcoat said. “If we can get practically and meaningfully focused onto living that way, I believe the quality of life here on campus will radically increase. It’s already great, but I believe that we can live lives with less stress and more love than we are right now.”

Jackson also expressed a desire that this year’s theme will remain active and relevant to campus, far beyond this year’s classes of 2017-2020.

“Asbury and ASC are sources to prepare students for what is next,” Jackson said. “I believe we can seek to do this through our theme. We hope that it evolves as the year goes on and is applicable to God’s movements on Asbury’s campus.”