Skip to main content

Fall Is Here!

Hello Everybody! I'm really glad once again to be able to update you on what God has been doing here at UTA this month. October is always a really exciting time in college ministry. It is typicall yby this point that students decide just how much they want to "buy in" to being a part of a college ministry. Many students begin to catch the vision for what God wants to do in their lives and in the lives of their peers. Every student that wants to in our ministry is being met with one on one by our student leaders and every week going through scripture together with them. The Christ centered community that develops out of that is very clearly seen in one of my favorite times of the year, Fall Camp. Fall Camp is a time in which the students from our campus take a 24 hour retreat in which they will spend time, playing games together, making connections with new friends, and connecting with God by spending time together in worship and prayer all for the glory of Him who is worthy of praise. 
These are the students who attended fall camp this year and who are being blessed daily by your support. I am also in there. You are also blessing me. During fall camp we had students come and share what God has been teaching them and it was a beautiful moment of openness, vulnerability, and encouragement. Some spoke about their Self-Worth being found in Him. Others spoke about the new life that they have been given through the Spirit of God that making them new, and some spoke about how God has been teaching them an endless number of truths about the love that He has for them just through being a part of this community. Words like, Real Friendships, Discipleship, and Family were used to describe how they are being impacted. It is truly encouraging to hear from our students. What they share often ministers to me in ways that I could not even imagine. God is truly amazing in that He would choose to work in each one of these students lives and bring them closer in their relationship with Him.

Here is a very short video in which one of our new students is cheered for after a rousing game of kickball. This student is a freshman and new to the community but she has been so warmly welcomed that she has already expressed that when she graduates from college she has a desire to stay in Arlington in order to help continue the growth of Focus and the eventual Arlington church plant. Whether or not she does, it's clear that she really has been impacted by the friendships that she has found here.


Another really neat thing that I've got to do this semester is to go and visit the guy core groups. I lead a small group called core for commuter students every wednesday and I get to meet with the guys in that core group 1 on 1 every week, however there are two other guy cores that meet throughout the week and while I've gotten to meet many of those guys on our Thursday Night Fellowship large group meetings there is something special about the friendships that are developed in core.So I was really excited to be able to stop in and visit the different core groups this month and get to know a lot of the new guys better as well as get a more accurate picture of how well our current male leaders are doing at facilitating those groups. I was heavily encouraged with both groups. There really seems to be a lot of new young guys that show a lot of promise. These students are very clearly eagerly seeking the Lord and as a part of that are investing in the lives of their Christian brothers. I would love if you could pray for these students to continue to grow as leaders. This year we were only able to host 2 male cores because of the lack of leaders that we had, and it would truly be a blessing to this community and the students interested in seeking out God more if there were more leaders to lead and therefore more days available when Core groups could be hosted.


Just a quick little personal life update. Hayli and I have now been officially dating for two years and I couldn't be happier about it. She continues to be a blessing to my life. whether that is through challenging or encouraging, God has used her to teach me important lessons about serving and humility and thankfulness and I am very thankful for that.
Thank you again for all of your support and prayers! I wish I could share with you more, but apart from being here and asking the students it is difficult to express all that I really believe God is doing with the gift that you have given. I'm about to be off to go and study scripture with 3 guys today, and I can personally guarantee that God is teaching these guys very  important lessons and revealing Himself to them as they seek. Thank you again! I hope to hear from all of you soon 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Commiting to 4 more years of ministry.

Today I will be recommitting to 4 more years of ministry with Focus as a campus pastor to UT Arlington. While we could not invite people to join us for the ordination ceremony I wanted you to know that you can watch me make those commitments to the community online at 6:00 pm tonight on the website twitch.tv/utdfocus.
This week I've been going through a devotional that was curated to help pastors pray and think through the commitment that they are making. The call to be a good shepherd, to be an example to the community, to be humble and a servant of all, to know God deeply and allow our ministry to flow out of a relationship with him, and more. But I also this morning have spent time thinking about the reality that 4 years is a significant amount of time. As I was praying through the decision I still intend to make this evening I felt like God was leading me to reflect on the last 5 years of ministry here at UTA and remember just all of the amazing ways I've seen him work. Typ…

Learning From the Wise

Dear Friends,

Thank you for taking the time to read this ministry update. This winter season has been particularly encouraging and I am excited to tell you about what is coming up soon!

The month of December began with a celebration. The school semester was coming to a close quickly so we threw our annual Focus Christmas party in the first week of the month. Talk about Christmas come early. The event was filled with sweet memories, worship, and funny skits put on by the various weekly core groups. Watching those skits is always a highlight of the year as everyone in the core often participates and everyone gets to see each others silly sides.
 Once the semester was over and the students went home for the holidays, I had a lot of time to read. Over the break I have worked my way through 3 books. The Contemplative Pastor, A Pilgrim's Progress, and The Problem of Pain.

I have learned to love to read again since beginning my role as a pastor. I love getting to be able to sit at the fe…

Disciple Means Student

Two of the things that I have been most grateful for in the last month is the fact that God gifts us with so much fun in this life, and secondly, how God blesses us by giving us the ability to learn.
At our online TNF's we have been hosting after events for our students where we try to do something that helps everyone feel connected. At one of our most recent after events we decided to host "show and tell" where everyone finds one or two objects that they are most proud of owning or they consider to be the most interesting thing they own. It was such a blast to see what the students loved and wanted to show off. In the bottom right Taylor Bass, one of our student leaders, was showing off the set of armor that he and some friends had crafted from cardboard. And 2 blocks above him Nathan Baugh, another one of our student leaders, shows off his autographed pictures of Ariana Grande that he got when he was in middle school. It was so sweet to laugh with those in attendance. …