Saturday, June 1, 2013

June Update

One week ago we returned from our trip to SICM (Student Institute of Campus Ministry) in Bellingham, WA.  That's the leadership conference we take our potential student leaders each year.  As usual, it was such an enriching experience for the students and the staff.  It's really cool to see these up and coming leaders start to understand why we have been doing certain things the way we do.  Up until now most of them have just been participants in things like core groups or one-on-one Focus on Jesus studies.  All they had to do was show up.  Now they see how much purpose goes into those things and the importance of reaching out to their peers.  Even more, they are excited to do so.

The UNT group
Our entire group from Texas (UNT, UTD, TWU, Collin, & Richland)
My host family and the guys who stayed there

On Wednesday we had our first summer FOCUS meeting at UNT.  It was an introduction into our series over the book of James, focusing on practical Christianity.  After briefly framing the historical context of the book, I asked the students to stand up while I read the whole letter to them.  The father of the family I stayed with in Washington had told me he was impacted by a guest speaker at his church who talked about reverence for scripture.  The speaker read a large chunk of scripture to the congregation and had them stand up as well.  This resonated with me and seemed like the perfect way to start our study of James.  First of all it helped us be better engaged in the letter by delivering and receiving it the way it was originally intended.  Also, reading the words of James (most likely the brother of Jesus) carries more authority than anything I could say on top of it.

I have asked some of the older student leaders to prepare sermons for the upcoming weeks.  We like to give students an opportunity to be challenged in their ability to teach and also let the students hear from each other.  The summer seems to be the best time for this.  I'm looking forward to working with them on those lessons and seeing how God uses them to affect the community!

Update on TWU:
We missed the deadline for registering as a student organization at TWU, but we should easily meet all the necessary requirements by September when the fall semester begins.  The last registration deadline for the year just happened to be before we had a chance to register.  Unfortunately, that means we won't be able to be at the orientations over the summer for new and transfer students.  That really shouldn't be a big deal and to make up for that we intend to plan some unofficial hang out events on campus to meet new people.  Our goal is to start developing a small community over the summer so we have a solid foundation to build on once school starts.

Thank you so much for your support!  Keep us in your prayers, and let me know if there is anything we can be praying about for you.

Yours for the Campus,

Matt


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