Wednesday, May 1, 2013

April Update

I know that I say this every school year, but I cannot believe that this school year is wrapping up already.  We have already wrapped up our leader meetings, our students are having their last core meetings and we are getting ready for our end of year banquet.  Summer is almost here and we have some great things planned for the students that stay here.  I will wait until next month to tell you about that! With the year wrapping up, I have been thinking back on the school year and all of the things that God has done in and through our ministry.  It is so exciting to think about.  You need to know, that we could not have done it without your financial support and more importantly, your prayers.  God is answering our prayers to change lives at UTD.

With that said, I have a huge prayer request I want to put before you.  I think that I have already mentioned this but, we have selected 9 interns for next year who all have to raise their own support.  Each of them has started fundraising now so please be in prayer that they can raise the budget they need to do the internship.  Some of them have a smaller number of people to ask for support and really do need your prayers.  The FOCUS internship has become such an important part of what we do.  The internship teaches them leadership skills, biblical knowledge, and other ministry skills that will help them the rest of their lives.  We have more and more students who want to do this when they graduate.

I have been so proud of our interns this year.  Courtney preached her first sermon a couple of weeks ago on Friday night.  She did such a great job!  She posted a link to her sermon on her blog.  If you have a chance to listen to it, you should.  At the beginning of the year she was terrified to speak in front of FOCUS and now just 9 months later, she is preaching.  Katy Jordan also preached her first Friday night sermon the week after Courtney.  She did great too!  She challenged the community on unity and made some great points.

Our last Friday night FOCUS is this week.  We are going to have the students get up and share what God has done in their life this year.  I will try to take some videos of that and share them with you.  I can’t wait to hear what they will say.
Thank you again for everything!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


I can not even begin to tell you what a busy, yet fruitful month this has been.  At the beginning of the month, we chose our intern team for next year.  I am so excited about the people who have decided to serve on our campuses next year!  We have at UTD Autumn Priestley, Emily Slatkovsky, and Laurence Glenesk at UNT Matt Wills, Grant Trotter, Sarah King, and Danielle Rodriguez at Richland Tabby Kamtala, and at Collin Melissa Collini.  This is such a great group of people who I know will do great things next year.  Please be in prayer for them as they begin fundraising for the internship.  The internship will be full time next year so they have a larger budget to raise.

Spring Break came and was gone so quickly!  I really got some well needed rest that will get me through until the end of the school year.

Last week we had a group of students come down from Western Washington University to spend their spring break ministering to our campus.  We got to host them all week and let them minster on all 4 of our campuses.  At UTD we had huge posters set up in the middle of campus each with a differnt misconception about Jesus and then an explanation of who Jesus really is.  Our students and the students from Washington had conversations with people who read the posters and also went around on campus and talked to people about their thoughts about Jesus.  The students had some amazing conversations and several students want to check out CORE and FOCUS based on conversations they had.  The week really was such a blessing and we now have new friends from another state.

Thank you for all your prayers!  We are getting close to the end of the year.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

February 2013

I am so excited to tell you all of the great things that have happened this past month.  The momentum we have had from winter camp has been so amazing.  God is working and he is changing people’s lives.

If you haven’t already done so, please read the student testimony on the main page.  What an amazing story, but there is more I would like to add.  A few days after Skyla wrote that, Sarah who is studying the Bible with her, went through the Rebirth study in Focus on Jesus.  The study went great and Skyla was contemplating making a commitment to make Jesus Lord and to be baptized.  She just had some more questions.  She and Sloan had a conversation about it and Sloan sent her a couple of short videos to watch about baptism.  The next morning Sloan asked her if the video answered her questions.  Skyla replied, ”yes, but I do have one more question…When can I be baptized?!” 

Skyla made Jesus Lord and Sarah baptized her.  The amazing thing about this story is Sarah just made a commitment to God last spring.  She did not grow up in a Christian home and came to college here at UTD.  Sarah found FOCUS and Kendall studied the Bible with her and baptized her.  God is so good!

Here are the videos of Sarah’s baptism. 

Last week we had our open house/parent night.  We wanted parents to have the opportunity to come and see the ministry.  The room was packed full of students and their parents!  We sang some worship songs, Brandon shared about our ministry, and then we got to hear from a few parents that wanted to share.  It was such an encouraging night.

I really do have so much more to share!  There are so many great things happening in all of our women’s CORE groups (small groups).  Please continue to pray for all of the students who lead those.  The real work of the ministry is done by them.  I am so proud of them and the way they are ministering to their peers.

March is going to be such a busy month as well.  We are about to interview and select our interns for next year.  Please be praying for us and these students as we select them and they start fundraising.  I will have a list of next year’s interns on my next blog.  Also in March, we have a group of students coming down from Bellingham Washington to spend their spring break ministering on our campuses.  Please pray for safe travel and that they have a great impact on us and our campus!

Friday, February 1, 2013

January-Winter Camp

The biggest thing that I want to tell you about is Winter Camp!  It was so amazing!  I wish you could have been there!

This year we chose a new camp for us, Sky Ranch in Van, TX.  This camp was hands down the most well run camp I have ever been to.  The food was great, the staff was great, the facilities and cabins were very well kept, and there were so many activities for everyone to do during free time.  On Monday morning the even had a huge breakfast buffet for us.  I felt so spoiled!

As great as that was, God was really moving there.  We had about 370 people come to camp this year from all 4 of our campuses!!  Geoff Mumley from Campus Christian Fellowship in Bellingham, Washington was our speaker this year.  God really spoke through him at camp.  He spoke about a New Kingdom.  That was such a great topic since one of Jesus’ main messages was about the Kingdom of God and it encompasses everything in our faith. 

Our praise teams from all of our campuses did such a great job. We had Violas and Violins and great singers who really lead us in worship to God.  God has been so good to us.
God really changed people at camp.  There are several students who are trying to decide if they are ready to make a commitment to make Jesus Lord and camp really helped with that.  Please, please be praying for them.  Other students just got a bigger vision for God’s kingdom and our place in that.  There have been several students invite their roommate or classmates to core in the past couple weeks.  Our cores have really started growing and new one on one studies have begun!  The thing that I am most encouraged about is that it is the newer people who got studied with last semester who are studying with the new people.  God’s Kingdom is growing and it is so exciting to see it. 

Thank you so much for your partnership in this ministry.  Without you, we couldn't do this kind of ministry.  Thank you so much for investing in the vision.  I know that God wants to do great things on the campuses here in the metroplex.  

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  I pray that 2013 is a great year for you.  I know that 2012 was another good year for Andrew and me.  God has just given us so many blessings and is continuing to work in our lives.
December was a great month for our campus ministry.  We had a Christmas party for our ministry at the Northeast Church.  Our theme was “Comet Christmas” since we are the UTD comets.  Our decorations were space themed as was our photo booth.  We had some appetizers for them to eat while they spent some time socializing and then the entertainment was provided by our cores.  Our cores performed a Christmas song and had some specific rules to go along with our Comet Christmas theme.  Here is the link to the video one of our students took if you would like to see it.

One of the most exciting things for me of the semester is to see the impact FOCUS is having on our students and ex-students parents.  Jamiann’s dad was baptized last week and is fired up about Jesus.  Jamiann was a student at Collin and led core there for 2 years before transferring to UNT to start a campus ministry with a few other students there.  Last year she did our FOCUS internship and had an amazing experience doing that.  Jamiann is now a youth minister a Northeast.  Jamiann’s dad has been coming to Northeast and Ronnie studied the Bible with him for the past few months.  FOCUS was able to reach Jamiann and then the church, her dad.  I am so thankful for the partnership of Northeast and FOCUS!

Also this past week, Griffin, a student at Richland was able to baptize his mom!!  Travis Jones met Griffin at Richland, studied the Bible with him and baptized him over a year ago.  Griffin’s mom came to his baptism where Brandon invited her to Northeast.  Kristen Chapman and I met Leanne at Northeast and started studying the Bible with her.  She was baptized as an infant which wasn't her choice so she decided to be baptized and confess Jesus as her Lord!  Leanne already has a vision for studying with other people.  Again, I love the support Northeast provides.  Leanne has a great church to serve in and grow in.

Lives are changing everyday and entire families are being impacted for eternity because you have chosen you give and support us.  Thank you seems completely inadequate for how I feel.  May God bless you richly!