Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Beginning Is Almost Here!

 My friends!

Can you believe that summer is over and we're about to begin the fall semester? This fall will be my sixth year as a campus missionary and I am so excited to have you alongside me for the journey. Thank you for your friendship and support through the years. This year will be no different than the last 5: God will be faithful. He always is! In just a few short weeks there are going to be thousands of freshmen, international and transfer students walking onto God's college campuses and we hope to be the first people that they meet. Through move-ins, campus welcome week events, outreach, ultimate frisbee nights, and many other venues we are going to try and meet as many students as possible!

Our staff just got back from our annual staff retreat and it was a week of faithfully reminding one another of your goodness. I think that in campus ministry, the temptation is to have control and gain a sense of security as you meet, befriend and disciple students. The reality is that God is fully in control of it all and calls us to simply submit to his will and be faithful with what he has placed in front of us. Below are a few pictures of our staff team(s) this year and I'm excited to be serving alongside them!

I hope you've got a few minutes to check out our student testimony below. As FOCUS has continued to grow to 10 different campuses in the DFW area, we are continually hearing stories of lives changing and being turned towards Jesus. Check out the story below:
Our July student testimony! 

Our 2017-18 FOCUS Dallas Staff! (From left to right: Peter, Sandra, Laurence, Mandy, Brandon, Sarah, Eddie, Dawn, and me!) I'm so thankful to get to work with such brilliant missionaries. God has put together such an awesome team this year and I'm excited to work alongside them!

A few weeks before the beginning of the fall semester our staff hosted an event called, SICM Refresh. In May we have our week long SICM campus ministry training conference and we wanted to have a condensed, one-day 'refresh' for our students have not been to SICM yet or have gone and it has been a few years. The event was such a success and the students were encouraged and prepared for an awesome kick-off to the school year! Mandy did a great job planning and coordinating this event!

This fall, I will be supervising Eddie Perez, one of our 2017-18 apprentices. Eddie recently graduated from UT Dallas and is taking a year to partake in our one-year apprenticeship program. I have known Eddie since his freshman year and I must say that I am so excited to work alongside him! He is extremely gifted and will be such a great minister to our students at UT Dallas and Richland College!

For our last FOCUS meeting of the summer we called up all of the staff that will be renewing their commitments to the front for prayer. We take our commitments very seriously and it was such a blessing to have our ministry & staff pray over our staff committing to serve our community!

Summer has been such a encouraging fundraising season! Each of our staff have been individually fundraising on their own to raise the salaries for their budgets. We plan several special events for our incoming apprentices to help them fundraise and for one of them we did a Family Feud evening (FOCUS Staff Veterans vs. Incoming Apprentices)! It was so fun and good to see our apprentices & staff bonding with one another. This year we've got a great group of apprentices and I'm excited to work alongside them!
Another picture of our 2017-18 FOCUS apprentices during the "Family Feud Game Show Fundraiser"!

Our 2017-18 FOCUS Apprentices! Please be praying for them as they prepare for the beginning of the school year. They have already begun their bible reading/apprenticeship assignments but they're going to hit the ground running here pretty soon!

Once again, thank you so much for believing in our mission and for believing in me. 10 years ago, as a 19 year old, I would've never imagined that I would be a full-time campus missionary serving on God's college campuses. Thanks to a team like you all, it's been made possible and into a reality. I recommitted to another 4 years of campus missionary work through the 2020-21 school year and I am excited to have you all side-by-side with me!

Please don't hesitate at all if you have anything you'd like prayer about :) Thank you so much for your support and I'm honored to have you on my team!

Your brother & campus missionary,