Fellowship Filled February

 




Fullness of Joy 


Another month has come and gone! Although February is the shortest month, there was no shortage of blessings that were encountered! Thank you for the ways you have responded to the invitation to join in on this ministry that God is doing! Getting to share these wonderful moments with you makes me giddy! I hope this month's blog post encourages you to know that God is truly stirring the hearts and minds of young adults to experience Him deeper. 

Love Experienced Through Fellowship Gatherings 

February kicked off with out apprenticeship group hosting our monthly Sabbath dinner. Though participating in these monthly dinners takes additional planning, they truly teach me about God's heart for fellowship. This group of friends has been a source of mutual encouragement. Friendships don't happen by accident. Our dinners have helped me to remember that we need each other to recall the rest that God calls us into. Rest can look like fellowship with food, belly laughs, games, and encouraging conversations. 



Our Collin team put together a Galentine's event to celebrate the real love in friendship and community. It ended up being such a fun night full of food, blind karaoke, and lots of laughs. I've written about this in previous blogs, but I really can't help but be so thankful to the Lord for the ways he brings people from all sorts of different walks of life together to create places where joy, hope, and love can flourish. 

Our Wylie team hosted a joint small group this month. Currently, there are only two small groups here at Wylie - 1 men's and 1 women's group. Getting to merge our groups for a game night was such a great experience! Lately, I have been realizing that what God is doing in this community is quite uncommon. One Thursday night, our students stayed way past the worship and sermon portion of our fellowship night to continue playing games in the school atrium. There are often times where I sit back in these settings and silently praise God for the gift of the opportunity to play a small role in helping to cultivate friendships that will hopefully last a lifetime. 





Thursday Night Fellowship - Family Night Edition 

Each year, our Collin FOCUS community hosts a Family Night edition of our Thursday Night Fellowship event. Students get to bring their family and friends to see the community that their kids/friends have been hanging out with. It was so sweet to see students worshiping God alongside their parents, siblings, and friends. We also got to hear testimonies from different students for the ways they've experienced God bless them through our community. I'll share a few quotes below:

"I have a box that I keep some of my prayers in. Every now and again, I'll look through them and notice that God has been answering them. For a while I had been praying for friendships. I was about to sign an acceptance letter to attend the school I had gotten a full ride to, but in the last moment, I had a sense to come to Collin instead. Despite that, I realize the change of plans was actually God answering my prayers for community and friendship." - A Plano Campus Student 

"When my family moved to Texas from Illinois, I struggled with a deep sense of loneliness that I was misdirecting in a pursuit of a romantic relationship. However, after joining this community, God began to teach me through different friends and mentors that God was the one who was going to fill the longings of my heart more than a romantic relationship could. Now I have great friendships and have even gotten the opportunity to lead a weekly prayer group." - A Wylie Campus Student 

"Since my daughter has joined FOCUS, I have seen her grow in her love for others and in the ways she has been equipped engage in thoughtful discussions about apologetics." - The Father of one of our small group leader

I hope these quotes encourage you as much as they encouraged me. Your financial contribution and partnership really is going toward answering the prayers of young adults! Thank you so much for choosing to invest into the lives of these students!!



Pizza Theology : The B-I-B-L-E is that the book for me? 

February also included one of my absolute favorite FOCUS events : Pizza Theology! What I love about this event is seeing so many students from all over the DFW metroplex gather with an desire to engage with their faith at a college level. Pizza Theology is the chance each semester to get teaching of significant depth on a Biblical topic, and then enjoy a nice pizza break in the middle. This semester's Pizza Theology guided us to think through the following key topics and more:
  • What does it mean that the Bible is inspired? 
  • How does an ancient book apply to modern life? 
  • How did the Bible come together?

B.L.I.S.S Presents Night of Black Church 

In honor of Black History Month, our friends at UTD FOCUS hosted a Night of Black Church. The heart behind was to pay homage to the legacy of the Black Church. The night consisted of Sunday's best attire, singing, dancing, an incredibly edifying message, joy, and lots of praise to God! Joining in with the worship reminds me of Revelation that speaks of the rich diversity of God's kingdom. 



Prayers

We have just under 3 months left to the semester. In May, FOCUS sends students to a leadership conference called SICM - Student Institute of Campus Ministry. I want to ask if you could please be praying that our group of students gets to go and that they might be built up and trained to be disciple makers on their campuses.

Midterm season has also arrived for many students. This time can be stressful for many as the juggle school, assignments, friendships, and exams. Would you please join me in lifting these students as asking the the Holy Spirit would be their rock and source of peace? 

Thank you again for your faithful support - whether it's through your financial continuations or your prayers. It is because of your generous support that FOCUS is able to invite students to encounter Jesus and is able to foster environments where students are welcomed, known, and loved. Thank you for saying yes to this mission and partnering alongside us! I pray that God's peace, love, and grace abounds in greater measure in each of your lives! 





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