|During Spring Showcase, I had the privilege of performing an original song with a FOCUS student named Hannah (SUPER talented, but unfortunately not in this picture) and a FOCUS grad named Chiazo (right-hand side in the picture above). More on what made that meaningful below!|
"I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.
He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit,
while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.
You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.
Remain in me, as I also remain in you.
No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.
Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me."
John 15:1-3 (NIV)
I wanted to start out with a HUGE thank-you to everyone who came to Spring Showcase to help us send our students to SICM! (If you're not familiar with Showcase, I have failed you, but also you can look at my previous month's blog post for more information). It was definitely a success, and such a joy to take part in.
A couple of friends and I had the honor of getting to perform a song we had written specifically for the Showcase, and it was such a blast to do. Normally, that's not the kind of thing I would write about in a ministry blog, but this song ended up becoming an exploration of the ways in which God works in our hearts and in our spirits to renew them. I think it captures a lot of the ways God has worked to change me since I've started following Him. If you're interested in that, you can read those lyrics here.
Lately, I think God has been growing me and pushing me in a few ways.
- He's been showing me that I'm a campus minister, but I'm not here to help people be disciples in college. I'm here to be used by God to help people become the kinds of disciples who grow in their faith for a lifetime. I can't take anything close to full credit or full responsibility for the rest of someone's life as a disciple, but that's the kind of perspective I want to have. God's showing me that I have a lot to learn here.
- God's been showing me that I still have a lot to learn about love. It can be easy to assign different attributes to God (love, justice, mercy, etc.), and then to attempt to know Him by learning about those things, but if He really is the source of Truth, then I should really be seeking to learn about what love is by getting to know Him more.
- I recently finished taking a Financial Peace University class with a bunch of people from our family of churches, and God has been challenging me a lot in how I spend my money. I've never been stingy with people, but I have never been stingy with myself. That coffee I bought, that bedframe I don't need but haven't sold, and those pants I forgot to return for 30 days are all little innocent (or not-so-innocent) examples of me poorly stewarding the resources God has given me. God's growing me up in this area :)
|Here are the people I went through Financial Peace University with. The dedication and humility of these people challenged and inspired me a lot!|
|A picture of everyone who showed up to Alumni Night|
Katy Jordan, a FOCUS graduate who works on campus at UTD and has continued to be a leader in our ministry for several years, organized an Alumni Night, where- you guessed it- alumni came to our large-group service! It was so cool to see a bunch of FOCUS grads- many of whom I was a student leader with, and a handful of whom now have kids. It was a great reminder that we're not just shaping college students as disciples- we're shaping future accountants, computer programmers, artists, missionaries, mothers, and fathers.
- Please pray for our students as they enter the dreaded season of finals. Many of them are exhausted from the semester, and we want them to finish well.
- Pray for our students to be purposeful in the last month they have to disciple one another before many of them move back to their hometowns for the summer.
- Pray for our students to be purposeful in planning how to grow closer to God this summer!