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Showing posts from 2022

Mele Kalikimaka and HUGE Thank You!

 I want to start by saying thank you! Thank you to everyone who regularly partners with me in college ministry. And a double thank you to everyone who chose out of their generous hearts to give even further to our annual Keep Focus Growing Campaign. Because of you, we were able to raise $100,000. Because of your generosity this ministry will continue to be able to operate on college campuses with equipped campus pastors for years to come. God's ability and continued willingness to provide for this work never ceases to amaze me. I'm humbled and thrilled to have such supportive ministry partners who see the need and continue to meet it. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You may be wondering why I wrote Mele Kalikimaka in the title above. Well, if you don't know, that means Merry Christmas in Hawaii. And Christmas in Hawaii was this years theme for our UTA Focus Christmas Party.  Pictured above is just a few of the guys in this ministry that I get to spend time with regularly.

TODAY IS GIVING TUESDAY (Lots of Student Testimonies)

  If you would like to make a special gift today, that would be incredible! All collective gifts up to $54,000 will be matched today so this is an incredible opportunity for your gift to have an increased impact. Feel free to read the student/alumni testimonies below to get a sense of what kind of impact your gift can have. Thankful for you all!

Spooky Season and Keep FOCUS Growing

 We just wrapped up Halloween. And the spooky season came with a few fun and interesting opportunities to bless students on campus and help others wrestle with what they believe about life after death. At our last Thursday Night Fellowship of the month of October, all our staff and students dressed up in our respective costumes and still came to worship together and learn more about God's word, while dressed silly as can be. I love that part of college ministry is getting to have fun together. An axiom in our ministry is "Be a fool for God, not cool for God."  And I think there is something really bonding about everyone collectively agreeing to be silly, even if just for one night. Our students had a great time dressing in their group costumes and building memories together. Thanks for providing a location for students to have fun and build memories with friends without having to be exposed to dangerous situations or heavy alcohol consumption like is often the case for co

Fall Camp 2022

 We just got back from Fall Camp 2022, and it was definitely one for the books. We had around 85 students come and join us for a weekend retreat about 30 minutes away from campus. While there was a lot of fun and games and snacks, which are incredibly important to any college ministry event there were also times of praise, worship, sermons, and spiritual reflection and prayer. I think it was the latter, rather than the former this year that had the largest impact on these students. During one of the evening sessions we had 8 stations that students could attend and spend time engaging with God. The students could read a psalm and learn how its structured, and then write out a psalm in their own words. Or students could reflect on various pieces of art that have come into being throughout church history and just reflect with God on his character. They could learn the prayer of examen practice which is to reflect on your day and ask God to reveal to you things you've missed about ways

Maverick Stampede; 40,000 Students

  Welcome to UT Arlington at night during Maverick Stampede! Hard to make it out from this picture but there is a sea of students all the way heading down to that stage in the back. 40,000 college students attend this campus and every single one of them loved by God. Every single one of them a possible friend to make and invite into Christian community. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be here to invite them in. Our student leaders did a great job meeting so many of these students! I want to start to share about one event that we were able to host and how God worked through it and then I'll talk to you about some of the resulting fruit of their labor. One of the events that we got to host this year is FOCUS Casino Night. Now depending on your Christian tradition and background, I know how that sounds. But, its completely free, students never spend a penny, but we get to hire some professional casino dealers come and put on an awesome night of fun and prizes, while our cor

Sent Into The World

 Hello Friends, Can you believe that it's already August and that means that new students will be coming onto UTA's campus for the first time in just three weeks!!! For the last month we have been, with God's help, putting together our student leader team. These student leaders will be some of the first faces that incoming students will meet, as we will be there to help them move into their dorms and invite them into friendship and christ centered community. It is such an important decision to figure  out which students will make up our leader team each year. Their own personal walk with Jesus, or their own personal character will set the tone for the seriousness with which the students who look to them for leadership will follow Jesus themselves, or the character of which they will choose to imitate. And I'm so encouraged that God has brought to us such upstanding young men and women. Here are some pictures of just a few of our student leaders this year. Would you plea

Summer FOCUS and Student Institute of Campus Ministry

 It's summer time, but God is still at work, and ministry is still in full swing! Pictured above is our Summer Thursday Night Fellowship, all of the students who are still living in DFW get together in one location to worship God, learn more about his word, and spend tine with friends. This summer we are going over our one on one bible study topics, but covering the heart behind the reason for covering those topics. So far we've talked about God's word and why having scripture on our hearts is so critical to bringing life to people around us. We also talked about Jesus, and why knowing him is so central to understanding who God is, and who we were made to be. In the weeks to come we will talk about community, discipleship, sin, grace, and several other topics! Our students will then go and cover these topics with their peers as they engage in one on one bible studies with people they meet in their classes in the fall. So exciting. About 100 college students just got back fr

End of an Era (Tons of Pictures)

 The school year will officially be over in just a few weeks and with that comes the end of an era. Our leader team will be different next year, and several of our seniors are graduating but God has always been faithful to us and he always will be. Pictured above is our UTA Leader Team. I am so proud of each of them. After 2 years of a pandemic these students volunteered this year to befriend their peers and commit to making Jesus known on the college campus and I have loved getting to work alongside them. Every week these students led small group bible discussions with the people in their core, and studied the bible one on one with those same people, and met with campus pastors weekly to receive coaching, feedback, and encouragement. It is a large commitment to be a corefa. But God is so good to bring us these students who are not only willing, but who are excited to get to have the opportunity. So much of what God is able to do in our community is through these students who have step

God and The Bod (Pizza Theology and Easter Outreach)

 Hello Friends, Hope you all have a wonderful easter weekend! He is Risen! I wanted to share a few recent updates from ministry this last month.  My coworker Taylor Nelson and I setting up for Easter themed outreach. Every week this month our campus pastors have been doing outreach on campus and its been going really well. This week Taylor and I set up an egg dyeing table and invited students to join us and make their own. It was awesome to not just see the willingness of students to participate, but many of them stayed for 45 minutes or longer just to chat and talk about how life has been. We got to invite several of them to come check out FOCUS. Even though there is only a few weeks in the semester, its clear that students are still very hungry for friendships. Earlier this month we got to have our spring semester Pizza Theology, lovingly titled, God and the Bod. We had several hundred college students from all across DFW come and learn a biblical perspective on what God says about o

Spring Harvest

 Happy March everyone! I hope that you are enjoying the warmer days and brighter weather. Things in FOCUS have been great, and I'm so grateful to each of you for the investment you have made in the lives of these college students. Your gift really is making an impact. Left to Right: Tevon, Oduwa, Ben Left to Right: Jonathan, Logan, Harte, Grayson, Ryan I love getting to watch and play a part in the reproduction of leaders in the church. When one generation pours into and invests their time to share Jesus with the younger generation it is always so exciting to watch those younger leaders step up and decide that they want to teach their peers and those younger than them the same things. Some of our leaders up above are Tevon, Ben, Jonathan, and Grayson. I get to meet with these guys every week and talk about what it looks like to follow Jesus, depend on God, and disciple men. They in turn study the bible with the guys in their core group. And this year, because of God's activity