Saturday, June 22, 2013

Trying to catch up...

Well here we are on the 22nd and I'm just now getting my blog out--clearly I'm behind.

Since my last post, we took our largest group ever to SICM.  The training was excellent as always, and our students have returned more passionate than ever about impacting their campus with the good news of Jesus.
These are the UTD students we took to SICM.  It's gonna be a great year!
In the meantime, I'm scrambling to get ready for fall.  We have staff and ministry budgets to raise, student leader teams to assemble, and curriculum to write.  And in the midst of that, we still have hundreds of students in town for the summer, participating in our weekly meetings and in this summer's School of Ministry classes.

To help handle all of that, I'm so encouraged to have Sirak joining our staff at UTD.  He'll be focusing on men's ministry and training worship leaders.  Sirak's internship has gone great this past year, and we invited him to join our permanent staff.  He has grown tremendously in pastoral insight, in his heart for these young guys, and in his ministry skills.  He's willing and able to have the tough conversations that can really help people move to new places in their walk with God.  And he's become a dear friend.  As I continue to spend a significant amount of my weekly time investing in our staff at other campuses, it is so encouraging to have Sirak at my side at UTD.

On the personal front, I've been trying to sell my house.  If everything goes according to plan, I should close on July 2 or 3.  God has been good (as always), providing a buyer and making the process move quickly.  But it's been a crazy few weeks of unexpected problems.  As an example, the night before the final negotiations, I came home to this:
You might think it blew over in a storm, but no.  Apparently a root grew in a tight circle around the trunk, causing the tree to commit tree suicide as it grew.  The top just popped off.  Who knew?!
I'm sure there's a powerful sermon illustration in there somewhere.  I just need to figure it out!

I appreciate your prayers for this ministry.  We face all the challenges of growth, of our most experienced student leaders continually being exported to other ministries (aka graduating), and of all the things the enemy is doing to destroy college students.  Keep praying for us!

And a special thanks to those of you who support financially--supporting a staff person, helping underwrite an event, scholarshiping a student to go to camp--these things are investments in the future of the kingdom and they are truly making a difference.  Thank you.

Developing Our Pastoral Team

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