Recap: The Month of October
I can't believe we're already halfway through the month! I've got so much to catch y'all up on, as well as to announce and explain our annual Keep Focus Growing fundraiser!
I apologize for the belated blog update-- Kurt, my husband, and I got COVID, so we've been quarantining. All is well-- we were vaccinated, so catching it was a bit of a surprise. Thankfully we've had a minor case, but wow, it sure can take you out for a couple days! I've been frantically trying to catch up on the work I'm behind on, but I'm thankful I can still have (zoom) meetings per usual, and that I have coworkers and bosses who are so flexible and understanding of my situation!
The month of October has been full of so many good things, and I've got to start off with the news that I'm most excited about:
We are praising God for our healthy niece, Lydiah Doty, and nephew, Jacob Birdsell, who we've been anticipating meeting for so long!! Be prepared for a mini spam of photos, because they are so precious and we are so in love with them! I got permission from both my sisters in law, so be prepared for all the cuteness!
Lydiah is on the left, and Jacob is on the right-- they're about 5 weeks apart!
Here's one more photo with baby Lydiah, of the Birdsells meeting her! I love this photo so much because it's so precious to see the wonder in Clara's eyes! I'd like to imagine that her meeting Lydiah made her even MORE excited to meet her baby brother, Jacob, who was going to be born only 4-5 weeks later!
Thanks so much for admiring these sweet photos with me! It's been such a joy marrying into such a wonderful family, with the sweetest kiddos! Sometimes when I sit and think about it, I'm so blown away by the special, good gifts God has so graciously chosen to give me.
Time Flies When You're Having Fun and Doing Campus Ministry!
We're almost halfway through the school year, which means I'm also halfway through this pastoral apprenticeship! I am such a sentimental person, and thinking about the end of things is so bittersweet to me. It makes me want to cherish each day more, and hold each moment closer to my heart. I want to be more fully present, not missing out on what God is doing right in front of me. As I stop and reflect on the year so far, my heart wells up with deep gratitude and joy. This year has been the most amazing gift, and I'm so thankful to have a support network of friends and family who believe in what God is doing on campus, so much so, that they would support me so I can also be a part of it. I get to watch people's lives transform before my eyes as we faithfully plant the seeds God has given us, and then watch as God makes those little seeds grow.
Keep Focus Growing- Breaking New Ground
Lastly, I wanted to tell you all about an annual fundraiser we put on, called Keep Focus Growing, or KFG for short. Our theme this year is "Breaking New Ground". It's one big push we have every year to raise funds for things like campus outreach, supplies to print our one-on-one bible studies (Focus on Jesus), administrative costs, and more! Last year we had over $49,000 in donor matching funds, and raised, in total, $104,748! If you'd like to be a part of #KeepFocusGrowing this year, mark your calendar for Giving Tuesday, which is November 30th-- the Tuesday after Thanksgiving! Be on the lookout on Facebook for our fundraiser! If you can't give on facebook, or would just like to read more about KFG, check out this link: https://anyfocus.org/kfg/
If you would like to take a look at a breakdown of our financials, you can check that out here: https://anyfocus.org/donate/annualreport/
If you'd like to pledge be a matching donor, email firstname.lastname@example.org!
Please pray for the sweet girls in my core: that they encounter Jesus, and that they be radically transformed by that encounter with Him. Pray that their encounter with Jesus compels them to follow Him, all their lives. God is doing a work in each of their hearts, and it is so exciting, daunting, and life giving to get to be a part of it.
A personal prayer request I have is for wisdom in discerning where God wants me as the school year draws to a close. I absolutely love college ministry-- I love making and maturing disciples on the college campus, I have a lot of fun while doing campus ministry, and I think God blesses so much of what I get to be a part of. However, it's not just up to me to make the decision for me to stay-- it's up to the rest of staff, and most importantly, where we think God wants me.
Please pray that Keep Focus Growing is successful this year-- this school year, we were able to pioneer planting ministries on five new campuses this year. God is moving and working powerfully on our college campuses, and in the hearts and lives of so many students. Please pray that the fundraiser this year is successful, despite the financially tough year it's been for many.
Lastly, could you please join me in praying for Winter Camp? Every January, all the FOCUS campuses are invited to join together to learn more about God, and get to experience a week that could transform their lives.
Thank you all for loving and supporting me! To end this month's blog, here are some photos from the month of October (:
Selfie with a couple of my core gals at Friday Night Fellowship! Katie (in the middle) is a senior biomed student, and Dj (on the right) is a sophomore student. I love them so much and am so proud of them.