First off, I am so, so, so excited for this upcoming year and very thankful that I have such wonderful people to share this experience with. Thank you for joyfully joining me in this by praying expectantly and giving generously. I am looking forward to getting to share with you how I get to witness and partake in the work God is doing in His kingdom as well as the things He is teaching me!
This summer, I got the opportunity to serve at Camp Blessing on staff down in Houston. Just one day after I got back, I started the apprenticeship. I was feeling a little nervous about this short transition between a ministry serving special needs kids into a ministry serving college students. I felt like I was switching gears rather quickly and that I needed time to rest following this whirlwind of a summer. However, God provided wonderfully because the first day of the apprenticeship involved us leaving to head down to Lake Travis for a few days. This retreat allowed us time to really build relationships with one other, get geared up for the upcoming year, and spend time with our Lord. That may sound tiring to some, but for me, it was restful and left me feeling spiritually fed and even more excited for the upcoming year.
Old Testament Foundations
Guys, God did some pretty powerful things this summer. One of them involved me reading through Exodus and Joshua, which then left me questioning the character of God and desiring to know how a God can be both just and gracious. After a couple of weeks of trying to process these two books of the Bible, I was spending time in worship when God laid a thought on my heart for me to ponder which consequently led me to Psalms 103. I began to cry while reading this, because I knew this was God answering my prayers and replacing my anxious thoughts with peace. A few days later, I sat down and wrote this short poem.
hearts were hardened and anger burned against them,
but the Lord had favor.
His mighty hand moved and nations were destroyed,
but the Lord gives justice to the oppressed.
His children turned away and ignored His good works,
but the Lord has compassion.
we sin and sin until we dig ourselves into a pit,
yet the Lord still redeems us.
the Lord has established His throne in heaven,
and His kingdom rules over all – and He invited us in.
we are so undeserving, myself included,
but the Lord crowns US as His sons and daughters.
the punishment we deserve for our sins will never be known,
because the Lord removes us from our transgressions.
He took them upon himself and washes us clean with His love,
because He is our gracious Father.
the only Father who abounds in love, is slow to anger,
has unending compassion, and loves all His children whom
He formed lovingly from the dust with tender care.
from everlasting to everlasting, the Lord our Father
is with His children.
I share all of this with you to say that I am really excited for the Old Testament Foundations class I am beginning this week. God answers prayers in beautiful ways in my life, and in the Old Testament, but I still have so many questions. I believe this class will help me to begin to develop an understanding of the Old Testament and have a newfound appreciation for it, as well as see God in a new light.
|Amber and I last year at SICM (Student Institute for Campus Ministry) - This year we will be working together on the TWU-Dallas campus AND roommates!|
Expectations for the coming year
This year is a big question mark for me currently. I know that I am going to be a campus missionary apprentice at Texas Women’s University in Dallas and at University of Texas at Dallas (whoosh!) and that God is going to use this opportunity to grow me in exciting ways. Yet I still am not quite sure what it will look like (which is God already stretching me outside of my comfort zone). Here are some things that I am expecting, and I would love for you to join me in this throughout the upcoming school year, especially with prayer.
- That FOCUS will become an organization at TWU-Dallas, God will equip our students to be bold on their campus, and students will have open hearts ready to seek to know the Lord more and more.
- That God will challenge me in areas that do not reflect Him, and continuously provide opportunities for me to grow.
- That I will get to dig deeper in scripture, learn more about God, and pursue Him relentlessly.
Ways you can Pray
August is an exciting and busy month for us. We have Corefa (short for Core Facilitator who are our student leaders who facilitate small group discussions and relationships between our students, and strive to point students to Jesus) Training coming up next weekend, and the weekend after, students will be getting ready to start classes! This is one of our busiest seasons because this is the time when students are out looking to make friends and are deciding where they want to be connected. With that in mind, please be praying expectantly for the following.
- Pray that our students and staff to have the energy and excitement, as well as health and rest needed to be effective in these upcoming weeks and intentional with reaching out.
- Pray that the incoming freshmen and transfer students can quickly be connected to and plugged into a campus ministry, and that they feel welcomed and loved on.
- Pray for myself as I begin the Old Testament Foundations class – that I will not grow weary but that God would spur me on. Also, that God will provide many opportunities for me to get to know TWU-Dallas students as well as UT Dallas students. Lastly, that God will provide the remaining support I need for this year quickly so that I can be fully focused on the time I have with students.
Thank you so much for the continuous love and encouragement! I love each and every one of you guys.