I met Alice after sharing in a Sunday School class and she invited me to this coffee house where she performed poetry she has written about human trafficking
Lauren and Sarah (above) and Jody and Megan (below) were some of our awesome interns this summer!
Boy, am I thankful for deep community. Can I just tell you that is one of my favorite things?! Deep conversation with others at a heart level and walking alongside each other in times of need... so valuable!! And that was one of the ways the Lord encouraged me on this trip, was seeing Him provide some deep one-on-one convos with a few of the girls at the perfect time. He knows!
After meeting students and sharing at a few gatherings in Houghton, Sarah and I traveled to PA and were able to have some time with some Grove City College students and visit my aunt, uncle and cousins! This was a huge encouragement! That Friday night, Sarah and I met with a couple of students a co-worker asked me to check in with and they were so excited about the Lord and asking the Holy Spirit to really move on their campus-- it was such an encouragement to hear their desire to see Him move. The following morning was just as great when more than 30 students gathered for a breakfast meeting to talk about missions with us.
Grove City College Students
It was amazing to see even in the midst of a busy schedule how the Lord provided opportunities to connect with so many people between trips! My first day back in the office after Houghton, I headed to Lousiville, KY where a teammate and I met with a pastor at Sojourn Community Church to network and brainstorm about community, church-planting and training new emerging leaders. This was a huge blessing and it left us challenged with lots to bring back to our team. The ideas excited me- thinking of what it will take to make the ideas a reality, challenged me. A few days later, a young Colombian pastor named Oscar visited headquarters. At 22 years old, he is heading up the missions department for a denomination of over 700 churches. Although we met hoping to come alongside him, we found him pastoring us and it was great to have time with him and learn from him while he was here. (We're praying and looking for people to send to Colombia for one year or more to serve alongside him!) Then, before Oscar's visit was done, I was off to Chicago for Moody Bible Institute's missions conference...
God really answered prayers for open doors and effective time there. It was great to visit this campus for the first time and it was OMS' first year to be represented among the 60 missions agencies there. The week included main sessions, break-out sessions, intercessory prayer and lots of time with students. I was so impressed by the unity among the student body on this campus! Part of the conference design is that the mission reps stay in students dorm rooms. Below are my roommates from the week, Liann and Kelsey and Kylie, another girl from our floor! They were such sweet hosts and awesome girls to get to know. Can't wait to see how God continues to sharpen them and what He has prepared for their next steps.
While at Moody, Jesus so graciously provided a few connections in perfect timing. One of the main speakers for the conference is an experienced church-planter that made time to sit down with me for a couple of hours and patiently listen, process and offer mentoring to some questions I've been wrestling with. Another night, one of the girls on our dorm floor gave up part of her evening to pray with me over a family in need at the hotel and our church. I am thankful that the Spirit can bond hearts quickly and provide family no matter where we are. Thank you again for your prayers over these trips and for your faithful support and encouragement! I praise God for how He is moving and am thankful for you.