October was such a blur. Really, every month seems to be passing so fast. So many fun things happened... here's the October recap.
This month we wrapped up Old Testament class. It's crazy just how much I learned over the span of reading the whole thing. My overall takeaway is similar to what I shared last time: God is full of grace and forgiveness for His creation. I love how much He loves us. I am praying that as I do ministry, I will have the capacity to love the people that I interact with a fraction of the way that God loves us. We also finished our Evangelism and Body Stewardship classes. So, with wrapping up those classes, new ones take their places!. We are now taking a Financial Stewardship class, as well as a class about the Holy Spirit. We are reading a book called, "Paul, the Spirit, and the People of God" that goes in-depth about the Holy Spirit. I'm super excited about this class and to write more about it in future blogs. Financial Stewardship is talking about how God views money, and how we should view money in return as Christians. We have just started that class as well, so more on that later!
|Our Evangelism class|
So we had the AMAZING opportunity to do a preaching workshop this month. A sweet lady named Kellie hosted it. Kellie worked for a ministry called CCF in Washington that we partner with in some ways. When she got married, she moved to Wichita Falls where her husband is from. Wichita Falls is about 2 hours from Dallas, so our staff thought it would be a neat opportunity to utilize Kelly and all her experience with doing these workshops when she worked for CCF. We were assigned a passage of Scripture that we had to give a 20-minute sermon. My passage was the story of Cain and Abel. It was an awesome experience where we received positive and constructive feedback from Kellie and a handful of apprentices that went in my group. I had such a fun time, and feel like I grew in my ability to stand in front of people and give a message!
|My Preaching Workshop crew!|
|Our group with Kellie!|
Okay, so we couldn't finish out October without a Halloween Party! But there is a neat story with this. Our staff planned a Halloween party that doubled as an outreach event for our campus. The premise was that we would have the party outside our Student Union, advertise for it around campus, and have it be an event to include anybody that needed plans for Halloween night. We were going to have a dance party, pumpkin painting, a costume contest, and more. But the day before, we realized it was going to be 30 degrees outside the whole day of Halloween. (Those who live in Texas understand our lovely weather that changes it's mind quite frequently and drastically.) Our staff decided that it would not be likely that people would be walking outside in this weather, and didn't want our staff and students to be miserable in the cold. We decided to cancel the party :( We told our students about the decision and they immediately started coming up with alternatives. Two of our students took charge and planned a party to be hosted at our church building instead. Everyone banded together to tell the people they had invited and carpool from campus. We ended up having a super fun and spooky party that was a GREAT success! I thought it was so neat that our students took the initiative and made it happen. My core (small group) went as the "Cheetah Girls", and we all had so much fun!
|Me and Emily!|
Keep Focus Growing
The last thing I'll talk about is an opportunity called "Keep Focus Growing." Every year on Giving Tuesday, FOCUS has a fundraiser to raise money for costs that we have to keep our ministry running on our campuses. It helps pay for everything outside of staff salaries (> $200,000/yr), and keeps us poised for new opportunities. Some of our generous donors have banded together and have agreed to match up to $36,000 in total donations during this campaign. So if we receive $36,000 in total contributions, they will kick in a SECOND $36,000! Your first chance to give will be on December 3rd! If any of you feel called to give to this initiative, feel free to contact me to see how you can. I would also love to answer any questions you might have.
Here are a few more pictures from this month!
|My sweet friend, Nicole|
|Nicole and Katherine got me a Halloween gift basket!|
|My Core girls at a Leadership Conference we attended|
|Ashley, Siena, and Emily.. my peer team this year!|
|Steven and Connor playing cards in our Student Union|
|Our Core Pumpkin Decorating Party|
|Emily and I with our pumpkins|
|Some of our girls had birthdays, so we went bowling to celebrate!|
I love all of you and am thankful for you. Until next time!!