Welcome Back Bearcats!
Hello Family and Friends!
It has been a whirlwind of a month. We have been prepping, planning, and praying for all of our welcome back (“Blitz Week”) events and now we are finally on the other side. What an incredible few weeks it has been with H2O church. The Lord has clearly been moving and it is a joy to see His Kingdom advance here on earth. I will walk you through everything that has been going on!
We spent 24 hours at our usual spot in Southeast Indiana. We gathered all of our student leaders to spend time bonding with one another, in preparation and prayer, for the upcoming school year. The agenda included various vision casting, worship, lifegroup core bonding, and plenty of fun. This is easily one of my favorite retreats of the year. I love getting away with our leaders before the craziness of the semester ensues. This picture consists of almost all of our student leaders for the 2019-2020 school year. Be praying for our leaders, that they would abide in the Lord and find rest to pour into their peers through evangelism and discipleship.
Water Bottle Handout:
We spent three days outside of the residence halls handing out water bottles and helping out with move-in. I had the chance to serve alongside my lifegroup core leaders for this upcoming school year. It was a simple thing to do, but a fun time to be in community with the people we will be spending the rest of the year with. Pictured left is my co-leader, Zach, and myself and on the right is a fraction of the crew that will be helping us lead our small group this year. Be praying for the new students we will meet. That we would be the hands and feet of Christ. Pray that our words would be seasoned with salt and that our actions would match the truth we are abiding in.
Student Org Fair:
Every year UC hosts a “get involved” fair for everyone who is new to campus. We set up a table and various carnival games as a way to connect with the incoming freshman. This year we had 650+ connection cards filled out across all of our major events that we hosted.
Late Night Pancakes:
On both Friday and Saturday night of opening weekend we served collectively over 1100 plates of pancakes to anyone and everyone, but mostly to students out at the party scene. This is a great opportunity for our students to have spiritual conversations with their peers. Late night pancakes are something people will remember years down the road. I spoke with a 4th year who is not involved with our church, but was advertising pancakes for us because he has gone every year. This really is a unique way to serve our community and has done so for quite a few years now.
Our dodgeball tournament is an older Blitz Week tradition of ours. It has now become a UC sanctioned event for their welcome weekend festivities. We had 45 teams of 6 register this year to win our normal prize of Buffalo Wild Wings gift cards. The day was long and hot, but we had an incredible turn out! Pictured left is 3 out of 4 of “The Castle” ladies (aka my house) and pictured right is a shot taken of the spectators during the tournament.
We had 271 in attendance at our first service of the year! The worship team did an incredible job and afterwards the members of H2O City served everyone Free Chipotle! It was a good exclamation point at the end of a long, but good week!
We had an incredible night of worship on Sigma Sigma which is a central location on campus with beautiful outdoor space. The worship team opened with 4 songs, followed by one of our newest staff members sharing his testimony, and then Grant (our pastor) closed by sharing the gospel and explaining life groups. We then broke off into our respective lifegroup locations and had the chance to meet with students who will be joining us for our small groups this year. This was my favorite event of the week by far because it was an incredible way to meet new people and make solid connections.
Update on me:
I am so excited for this upcoming school year. I started to read through the New Testament from beginning to end and love that as we are starting a new school year I get to read about Jesus starting His ministry. It is such a great reminder of how we can be serving others by looking to the example that Christ set for us.
I have been extremely encouraged by my housemates and their servant hearts. Two of them are in their last few semesters as students, but are also leader’s for H2O and the other works full-time but is involved and serves H2O City. I love coming home to spend time with them, but I also love the way we encourage one another with truth!
Lastly, I have enjoyed digging into theology more in my free time. I recently acquired a copy of Wayne Grudem’s “Systematic Theology” and have loved thinking more about the “why” when it comes to the bigger themes and questions with Christianity. 1 Peter 3:15 says “but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect”. I wanted to be able to give a reason to others as to “why” I believe in Jesus Christ, but I wanted to be able to give an answer that had been thought about, researched, and prayed over. I wanted to give people more than “just because”. This book has done a great job with challenging me to think beyond what I know and look into other views and perspectives on various topics.
I could not thank you all enough for the continued prayers and support. The Lord has blessed me IMMENSELY with an incredible support system and an army of prayer warriors. None of this would be possible without your continued encouragement and financial provisions. I ask that you continue to pray for me, that the Lord would provide as He sees fit.
I am always looking for more people to partner with me in the mission the Lord has called me to. If you have any questions about what that looks like, feel free to reach out or simply click the link below!