Thursday, August 6, 2020

A Voice In The Wilderness

My friends, my team! 

I remember hearing around March that by June things should be back to 'normal'. Little did I think that this would be our new normal. At this point it's hard to imaging anything really getting back to normal, but, if this is the context that God has called us to my prayer is that we would be faithful! 

But let me ask a question: Is what we do on campus ever considered 'normal' by any time of standard? Our routines, habits, systems...etc. may have created a sense of normalcy but the work that Christ has called us to - it's never been normal. I keep trying to remind myself of this truth as we prepare for a very un-normal school year.

The school year is just a few weeks ago and our campus, Richland College, will be 100% online this fall. All of the in-person classes that we once knew are currently a thing of the past. It is hard to envision what this semester will be like, after all, who plans on being an "online campus pastor"? 

By now we all know that zoom meetings aren't the ideal format to connect with one another, but, we are making the best with what we've got! Our FOCUS theme this year is, "A Voice In The Wilderness", and - it sure feels that is what we are: a voice in the wilderness. This year is its own type of wilderness - the unknown, unexpected, unplanned for - but, the call is the same: God calls us to be his voice. 

In the same way that John the Baptist prepared the way for Christ, we too prepare the way for his kingdom to come on his campuses. Even if things are different.

We have a great student leader team assembled this year and we are excited that they would volunteer their time as they are full-time students to also be missionaries on their campuses!

One of my dear friends and Richland FOCUS alum, Henry Pham, wanted to take me out for lunch for my birthday - he is one of my favorite people to get to spend time with. Love you Henry!

We did a couple of outdoor, socially-distant meetings before the summer ended and it was so encouraging to get time around everyone. This fall it looks like we may do more and more outdoor activities/events to maximize social distancing and the safety of our staff and students!
I got in ANOTHER car accident :) 1 month ago I was driving down Campbell rd. in Richardson when a tire came off of a trailer in front of me and hit my passenger side door. I got my car repaired and their insurance took care of everything. Just a few weeks after I got my car back, my car was hit in a parking lot by an inattentive driver. No one was hurt both times :) I suppose this is why we have car insurance :)

Another picture of the car accident.
Poor Camry. Been through a lot these last couple of months.

The students that have showed up consistently and participated have been a very encouraging source of life and community for me and my Richland team! I'm looking forward to a very different looking fall semester!

At our final Summer FOCUS meeting we had a zoom call for some of the students who were attending virtually. Maybe this will be our reality for the foreseeable future! 

Thank you so much for your support and for believing in what we're doing :) Thank you for believing in making and maturing disciples for God's glory whether or not our campus is physically open!

I would've never guessed in a million years that we would be where we are at, but, then again EVERY year at Richland College has been a surprise!

Please don't hesitate to let me know if you need prayer for anything at all!

Your brother & campus missionary,