Skip to main content

Hope, Joy, and a Crown

Hello friends and ministry partners,

This month has been the last month of the school year. And because of this I wanted to write and share with you just how I have seen God respond to your prayers and reward your generosity towards the college students on this campus. I was reading 1 Thessalonians Ch. 2 this morning and at the end of the chapter in verses 19-20 Paul writes " For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy."
Paul writes this to the church in Thessaloniki as he is reflecting on his relationship to them and he says that they will be the hope, joy, and crown that he will receive on the day of Christ's return. Even though I, and the rest of the staff here are the ones who get to meet with the students face to face, I really believe that you as a ministry partner and supporter will share in the hope, joy, and crown that the students at UT Arlington will be on the day of Christ's return. I pray that you would celebrate with me as you read these stories.
This has been our leader team this year. Faithful student volunteers who responded to Christ's call on their life to fulfill the great commission and to make disciples of Jesus everywhere they go. The staff mentors and meets with these student leaders every week, but it is these students that largely go out and bring Jesus to their peers on this campus. On average each one of these students is probably studying the bible with around 3 different people each semester. And they do this while working and going to school, and being involved in other organizations. These students have made Jesus such a priority in their lives and have been so willing to go and share Jesus with their peers that even though many of these students are graduating this year we have a whole new generation of student leaders rising up to take their place. A generation that was met with and discipled by these students pictured here. Every one of these students has shown Jesus to me in one way or another. But these students also overflow with gratitude for the community that they have found at UT Arlington. None of us are here because we are here, we are all here because God is good. Four years ago Focus did not exist at UT Arlington and now, because of you, there is a small community of students, radically in love with Jesus, dedicated to sharing him everywhere they go whether on the college campus or off. And so I am grateful to God for these students and for their heart for others. They have been incredible student leaders. They have set the example of what the love of Jesus looks like to the students younger than them, and through their faithfulness in serving, God has brought more leaders to take their place. And so I'm in a way sad to see some of them go, but getting to hear how some of the students who are graduating want to become involved as leaders in the local church has been equally exciting!
This is a picture of just the guy leaders from this year, but these are the ones that I spend the most time with. Not only are many of them dear friends to me, I consider myself blessed just to have daily interactions with them. I am incredibly proud of all of them as I have seen them tangibly respond to God's word. These are men who know God and seek to follow him in everything they do. They are servant hearted, humble, teachable, thoughtful, and caring. I can not thank you enough for your investment in college ministry. Many of these young men I have gotten to witness transform, through the power of God's spirit, from men consigned to be who the world says that they should be, into men who's lives powerfully reflect the truth that it is God who gives us our identity and purpose, and it is in following Christ alone where we find life and have it to the full.

As always thank you again for your partnership in this ministry. I pray that you are encouraged by these students as much as I am. Jesus is working at UT Arlington, and you have joined him in his work. I fully expect for you to receive your reward on the day of his return. Please never hesitate to let me know if there is anything that I can be praying for for you. We have our leadership conference called SICM starting this next week. Please join me in praying for the students who will be attending that conference. For me personally that was a life changing week where I first decided I was going to follow Christ's great commission. As always don't forget to read the student testimony below! Thank you!

In Christ,


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 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

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

God Continues To Amaze

 Hello friends, The last two weeks have been like nothing else I've ever experienced in ministry before. With restrictions from the University on where we can meet and how many people can be present we knew going into the two weeks of Maverick Stampede that we would not be able to operate like we usually do. There would be no pajama dance party to attend, or candy poker night to invite people to, or a waffleopolis to be overwhelemed by with the amount of people who come to that event just to eat one free waffle. None of those would be happening like they have in years past. In fact we weren't even sure how many students would be on campus. And with all of this uncertainty and our unability to rely on strategies we've used to reach the campus in the past, there was anxiety for us and for our student leader team. What would college ministry even look like this year? How could God possibly work with so many restrictions impeding our efforts? Well, good news, God is not impeded