Saturday, December 31, 2011
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
I don't think I ever posted any pictures of the SDSU peeps from this Summer's "Summer Training Project (STP). Yikes. Here we are, midway through the summer on the beach in SC. What a fantastic experience, myself included!
Monday, December 12, 2011
Friday, November 25, 2011
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
"See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ." Colossians 2:8
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Monday, October 24, 2011
So far this semester, we have had 7 weeks of Reasons. I SHOULD have posted the very first week but better late than never.
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Friday, September 30, 2011
I'll keep it brief...so in brief, the conference was amazing!
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Friday, September 23, 2011
Thursday, September 22, 2011
We are less than 24-hours away from the Desiring God Conference Trip 2011!
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
This weekend, we have our leadership training weekend. It consists of a bunch of things, from going over Equip vision, teaching more about discipleship, Bible study training, evangelism training and a bunch more.
This is perhaps the most excited I've been for one of these weekend training times. I think part of the reason is because of the time we are planning to spend on reflecting on our vision and whether or not the events and activities we do actually fulfill the purposes God has placed before us.
For instance, we do several social events throughout the year. One common tendency of social events is for them to turn into nothing but fun and entertaining times with friends. Now, there is certainly nothing wrong with having fun with friends or being entertained in and of
themselves. However, it becomes so very easy for these events to become ends in themselves. The student have fun, and everybody has a little bit of social fellowship, all the while true outreach and mission mindedness is lost.
I could apply this to virtually anything, including large group meetings if we are not careful and intentional about how we do what we do. Therefore, we have a list of everything we do, and this weekend we are going to spend a couple of hours reflecting on each and every one of them, asking what purposes they have served, what purposes we think they should serve, and how we plan on going about making that happen.
As an encouragement, I was looking at our annual "Soiree" event, and noticed that about half of the girls that came were not involved in Equip, nor did I (personally) know them at all. That was exciting to me, seeing the outreach that the girls intentionally did. Pray that this would increase and the gospel would be spread through events like these. If not, pray the Lord would convict us to 'cut the fat', get rid of whatever we need to get rid of, and use the time differently.
We are doing a bunch more, including listening to a gospel message together from STP this summer, having the STP students share and reflect on their expereince this summer, serving us in what they learned and wanting to apply it to Equip ministry this year.
Friday, August 5, 2011
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Most of you know, but I have been working my through seminary for the past three years, and I am now about 24 days from being totally and completely done...except for the next few years of loans I have to pay back, of course.
It is a bitter sweet feeling. I greatly look forward to having an extra 15-20 hours every week, and not having papers, projects and tests constantly hanging over my head. On the other hand, as I ended my last week, I realized just how much I have enjoyed and benefited from my Bethel education. There has been time where what I mainly concern myself with is the criticism and negative things that I have seen and experienced (such as not enough Church History classes, for instances). However, I was reminded by this last class by just how much I have indeed learned and benefited. I’ve gained incredibly valuable relationships with classmates and professors. I’ve grown a ton in the past three years of being stretched and challenged in my convictions, whether weak or strong. My last class was indeed very challenging, and not like how I expected it to be.
So, thanks to all who have prayed for me and to everyone that supports me, since seminary has been a large part of my life these past three years.
I don’t plan on moving or doing anything different than what I am currently doing, Equip! I get asked “what are you going to do now” quite often, which has been unexpected. I went into seminary with the intention of learning and growing myself, being better equipped to equip others, and by God’s grace, that is exactly the same plan today. This isn’t to say the Lord might not draw me elsewhere in the future potentially, but I love Equip and have a large conviction about what we are doing. It has been great, and now I’ll be even more time to devote to serving and equipping college students.
ps...the video has virtually nothing to do with this post, except that the school year IS indeed coming soon, something like 29 days left! We have a little timer on the website right now, which has been updated and renovated...I rebuilt it, made it stronger, faster than it was before (ala ‘The 60-million dollar Man’).
Friday, July 29, 2011
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Monday, June 27, 2011
Friday, June 24, 2011
Thursday, June 23, 2011
In a couple of hours, I will be enjoying some Southern food, beef, potatoes, corn, shrimp and all sorts of stuff all thrown into a pot and cooked. Tonight is the weekly social at the Project, and tonight is called "Low Country Boil"...should be fun.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Since Emma is simply a better writer than I might hope to be, I'm posting the link to her latest (2nd) blog post from STP.
- I've been able to learn a whole lot from these COM staff guys, how they do ministry, their hearts for the gospel and their openness and brokenness before the Lord, which has been very helpful.
- Every thursday night the students have a scheduled 'social', in which this last week was the "boat social". Very funny, and a great time for them to build relationship and get to know each other right away at the beginning of the project.
- I've had a few day training with the staff of COM, (Campus Outreach Minneapolis), plus several days of training and discussion with about 50 other CO staff from all over the place, (Georgia, D.C., Virginia, etc.). Each morning we would all gather, listen to 2-3 different speakers teach on various topics ad break into small groups to talk. A few of the message were:
- the way we should view the involvement of CO (Equip, in my case) in local churches
- being gospel centered rather than ministry centered (which was super convicting, I've got a lot to pray about and change in my own heart)
- rightly treating rest and sabbath.
- Discipleship vs counseling (which the 'vs' was in-fact not actually a 'vs')
Monday, June 6, 2011
Monday, May 30, 2011
After about 24 hours of driving the past two days, I am not finally in SC! Myrtle Beach is beautiful so far, although we spent the last several hours building lofts, moving furniture, moving refridgerators around the project site.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Saturday, May 21, 2011
So, I have two quick things:
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Okay, so it isn't actually [fun] raising, I just love the way that works.
But, I am now fully engaged in FUNDRAISING for the summer! For whomever of you keeps up with my blog postings on my ministry life, you may or may not know how big a part of my life that fundraising is...especially in the summer. all of this is to say, please pray for my fundraising efforts this summer!
So, this afternoon and all evening I've been writing thank you letters and organizing a bunch of stuff on my computer to start calling and meeting with people this summer. Shown here is Mike Berhow, the recent returnee to Brookings, along with his wife Becky. Mike, if you didn't know, was a staff member two years ago, and will be volunteering some of his time to teach and help do some ministry this next year and more to come, hopefully! Please pray that Mike and Becky would get involved and be blessed as they transition back to life here in Brookings.
Thursday, May 12, 2011
"February 17, 2011 was the first night I had entered the doors of 1st Baptist Church for Equip. I had no idea what to expect. A couple of friends had invited me to go along with them that Wednesday night. Everyone I met was very friendly and something about that place just felt homey. We sat in a small room and sang a few songs, prayed, and then Brandon spoke about Christ for a while. When Brandon was done he asked us all to bow our heads for prayer. Right then the room became warm and what seemed like every single sin I had ever done in my life had flashed right in front of me. My heart began to beat really fast and just felt heavy. My whole body was heavy, like someone was sitting on my shoulders and I was desperately trying to stand up with them forcing me down. Tears fell from my eyes at a rapid pace I had never seen before. Every time I wiped them away on my sleeve another ten drops were ready to fall. I didn’t quite understand exactly what was happening to me, but when we went back to my dorm room my friends Michelle and Tom, both amazing Christian friends of mine, came up to my room and talked me through what had happen to me. I remember every time I would say something Tom would flip through his Bible so fast to show me a verse that proved that God had made me new that night. All I could think about was how badly I wanted to go to sleep and wake up the next day living my life a complete 180 from what it had used to be. The change was so drastic that all of my friends tell me they don’t even know who I am anymore.
I’m a completely new creation! I had grown up sitting in a pew every Sunday calling myself a Christian. How ignorant I was to believe that I was a Christian just because I went to church on Sunday, ate the bread and drank the wine, sang the songs they asked, and tried to stay awake as my Pastor went on and on. Every now and then I would get a slight idea about opening my Bible, but it never lasted long. I would compare myself to my friends and the choices they were making and tell myself, “I’m a good person.” But until that night at Equip I had never noticed how disgusting my sin truly was. I give God all the credit for what He did to me that night at Equip!
Equip has helped me so much since that night. I have made many new wonderful friends who make great accountability partners to keep me on track with reading my bible and staying in worship. Luke gave me a helpful perspective on how as a Christian I am in a constant spiritual war with my own sins. We want to kill and defeat our sins so we can be closer to God and try to be like Jesus. I’m discovering what it means to be a Christian and making those changes in my life, defeating my sin and making a better relationship with God. Equip has been a great tool that God has given me to becoming a better Christian."
Thursday, May 5, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
I'm currently studying ancient church history for my seminary class right now. On the one hand, I'm very excited to be done with school work (including this class), for it adds so much time and energy to my days. However, on the other hand, it has been a terrific source of learning and development in my life. Personal study time has proved to be insanely influential in my faith and development of my ability to teach and lead others. This specific study happens to be through a seminary, but I hope and pray that when my seminary studies are done (June 4th graduation, baby!), that I'll continue to push myself and devote large amounts of time to learning and growing in my understanding of all the things God calls me to, from Church History, to theological issues, to leadership and how to best structure the things God is giving me stewardship of.
All this to say that personal study time is just so important to not stick in whenever you have time. Rather, it should be as disciplined a practice as an athlete exercises or as a medical practitioner stays current with developments in medicine (shout-out to the rest of my immediate family).
Furthermore, every Christian should be doing this, no matter what vocation they might find themselves in, reading and learning from those who surpass us is incredibly important in personal growth.
So, that is what I have been doing for the past 7 hours or so, minus a bit of time to interact with the locals...such as this handsome devil across from me, Mr. Isaac Randall...an "almost-graduated-graduate", who has been involved in Equip for a few years now, and is interviewing for various jobs right now. He will also be spending the night on my couch, as he does a couple times a week right now, finishing up school.
Thursday, March 31, 2011
I'm preaching on Ephesians 6:13-14 tonight, serving the campus ministry group "Intervarsity", which most people are aware of. I had the opportunity to serve them last semester by speaking on Isaiah 61 (I think), and now I'm very excited to preach on Ephesians 6, which will mainly be "we are at war" and that we need to fight and fight rightly in order to win and not die! (hence Rom 8:13, for instance)
Saturday, March 26, 2011
So, this weekend's leadership retreat was a super great time, relaxing & exhausting all at the same time.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
So, the Blue Cloud Abbey is a big hit, as I knew it would be. I love this place, and the students are certainly enjoying it as well. Just wanting to post a couple of pictures from our time tonight, and ask you to keep us in your prayers for tomorrow, that God would maximize our time together. Tonight was amazing, full of prayer, reflection about this year, and lots of excitement. The rest of the guys are busy playing "Monopoly Deal", and the rest playing a game of "Mafia".
So, God has been pleased to give us a great time of love and fellowship, everyone more than getting along and loving each other!
- This weekend: Leadership meeting till early Sunday morning
- Next weekend (1st-2nd): Men's conference in Brookings we are participating in.
- Next-next weekend (8th-9th): Youth Retreat we are bringing some college students up near Redfield to minister to some youth, for a little 1.5 day type thing of learning, play and gospel teaching.
- Next-next-next weekend: Rock Climbing & Camping (RCC) retreat, in which is awesomeness, but lots of planning.
- Next-next-next-next weekend: Easter, yeah! Nothing this weakened, expect dyeing on my couch from the past four weekends, and also celebrating the risen Lord!
- Next-next-next-next-next weekend (29th): Summer Training Project prep weekend, which means a trip to Minneapolis for the majority of the weekend, which will undoubtedly be just a great time.
One place I have started to meet with students and hold Bible studies and whatnot is in the new (this year) eating area in the Student Union area, with an Einstein Bagels food joint in it. Virtually every single time I'm in here, it is incredibly busy.
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Saturday, March 12, 2011
Friday, March 11, 2011
Here is a typical chunk of my day: