As we get ready to start another month, I'm going to be brutally honest....There are days when it's so difficult to find the joy in ministry life. I love the "doing ministry" part, but the "business" side of it frustrates and at times depresses me. The constant stress of making ends meet wears me down and knocks me to my knees. In those times of weakness, I am so thankful for God's strength that picks me up and urges me to remember that He is faithful and He is able. He sees me and cares for our family.
I know God gives so abundantly but I don't understand why so many Christians say they "can't afford" to support ministries or missions but yet they can afford all the latest gadgets and "toys". and earthly entertainment.
Ron Snider made this statement in his book "Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger" :
"For Christians in the richest nation in history to be giving only 2.43 percent
We have been so blessed by several new supporters who have chosen to join us in the kingdom work of FCA by financially donating to our monthly budget needs. But we still need several more to help us reach the youth in the Greater Dayton Area.
As we continue to step out in faith, God continues to open doors and bless this ministry. We have had some great things happen since my last ministry update back in May. Wow can't believe it's been that long since I've written an update. So here goes.
~ The Spring FCA Dinner with Terry Bowden went amazingly well. We had a great turnout of people and a great dinner. We recognized our 2 FCA student athletes of the year and gave away lots of raffle items. We're already working on plans for next spring's dinner.
~ One of the guests at the dinner attends a church that Rich has been trying to get a meeting with the pastor. This gentleman is going to work on setting that up.
~God provided a job for me with Operation Christmas Child here in Xenia to help cover many of our living expenses.
~ We returned to Camp SWONEKY for the second year to conduct sport's camp. We had a great time with the kids teaching them techniques in basketball and football.
~ God blessed our family with the donation of a newer van. Our other van was needing some major repairs.
~ We spent a week in Oneida on a family mission's trip with our church.
~ Rich continued to serve as the Dayton Dragons chaplain and during one of the chapels, the Skipper (aka the manager) and one of the players made the most important choice of their lives. They chose to walk from darkness into light.
~ We were able to take our entire family to Managua, Nicaragua to spend a week serving with a group from our church. God is opening some awesome doors for future ministry opportunities in Nicaragua.
~Rich was able to meet with the pastor of Fairhaven Church and share the vision of FCA. They will be partnering with us for future FCA events.
~ Rich was invited to return to OBI for a fall revival in late September. He will be speaking during morning chapel and evening revival services.
~ We had 2 more donors partner with us in ministry.
~ Rich and I were invited to attend a professional baseball player & chaplain retreat in Florida in December. We were then blessed with airfare being provided and a donation to FCA to cover our registration fee.
~ After months of praying, a new huddle is starting at Trotwood High School. We have a coach to sponsor it and the school has approved it and is very excited about it.
~ Our friend Rich Garza was in town speaking at different schools & detention centers. Rich was able to attend several of the events with him.
~ We began a partnership with Samaritan's Purse and the huddles will be packing shoeboxes as a service project. FCA magazine is planning to do a story on the partnership for their January/February 2014 edition.
~Rich was able to visit with a local high school player who was injured during a game. He has been able to minister to him and support him by praying with him and talking with him about his future.
~We were blessed with another church in our area joining our ministry as a monthly donor.
~ The Tipp FCA launched their new year and Christian helped lead competition night. He was also able to share the gospel and 13 of his classmates walked from death into life when they chose to give their hearts to Christ.
It has been an amazing 5 months and when I look back over all that has happened, I am once again reminded of all of God's blessings on this ministry. We have some exciting things coming up in the month of October.
~Rich is currently speaking at Oneida Baptist Institute this week. Please pray for him as he speaks. Pray also that the hearts of the students will be open to God's message.
~ On Saturday morning, Rich will be meeting with several men from Fairhaven Church to share the mission and vision of FCA. Please pray that they will partner with us in ministry.
~Also on Saturday, Rich will be leading chapel for the Davidson College football team when they come into town to play the University of Dayton.
Through all of the victories and the struggles God is teaching me that we can do none of this without him. This ministry is His and as we grow in our faith in Him, we're watching Him grow the ministry. Won't you join us in making a kingdom impact amongst the students in this area?