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Sunday, July 3, 2016

Summertime Update!

Hello my dear friends,

Happy summer to all of you! It sure is a hot one out here in Arlington! I pray you all are finding time for some rest, relaxation, and family time. I bet you are wondering, "April, what does a college missionary like yourself do over the summer when the students aren't in school?" Great question!

Here are a few of the things a campus missionary does during the summer:

  • FUNDRAISING! This is the main goal of our summer break. To continue to raise support for the coming school year and expand our support teams. If you have been on my support team this last year or just joined, THANK YOU! All of the posts on this blog are stories of how you made it possible for me to be at UTA this last year sharing the love of Christ with students. If you are currently not on my financial support team, would you pray about supporting me financially this coming year as I continue to minister to college students? I am currently at 50% of my fundraising goal and once August 1 comes we hit the ground running, so I only have one more month to expand my support team by God's grace! Please pray and consider this great opportunity to eternally impact the lives of college students, and also pray I meet others who believe in what God is doing at UTA! One of my supporters from this last year sent this message to me this last week that left me feeling encouraged: 
"We just told our kids about your group
and that when they get to college they need to find a group like focus."

When I read that message I was so excited that they see the vision of what we are doing and how communities like FOCUS can impact the generations to come!
All the campuses come together over the summer to worship God every Thursday night at 7:30PM
  • Spending time learning about God and practicing spiritual disciplines. This summer I have finished up a book called Switch On Your Brain by Dr. Caroline Leaf, where she makes the connection between how/what we think about affects the structure of our brain. I love that there is a Christian out there who is trying to connect science with God's creation! One of her tag lines in her book is that "science is finally catching up with the bible." I loved that! It was a very useful tool to help me look at what I am thinking about and how it affects me physically, and how our brains are wired in a way to receive grace. I have started a book called The Cultivated Life: From Ceaseless Striving to Receiving Joy by Susan Phillips. I'm at the beginning of this book but am reading it with the intention of growing in how to rest with God and how to just 'be' in Sabbath time. I look forward to learning from this book and making a plan for having a healthy Sabbath time this year. Lastly, I will be listening to an audio class on New Testament Foundations by Rikk Watts from Regent College to grow in my understanding of the New Testament. This last year I had the opportunity to listen to the Old Testament Foundations class and it helped me piece together overall themes from scripture. Super exciting and helpful!
    Kassidy and I drove out to Canton to meet one of our core girls from last year (Kirsten) who is from the Tyler area!
  • Spending time with students in Arlington! We have around 10 students who are from the area and we get to spend quality time with them this summer without the stress of school. I have been studying Focus On Jesus (our one on one bible study) with one student I met from UTA last year, because she has time off from class to devote to learning the scriptures, as well as, going through Experiencing God with another student I connected with this summer. We are hosting a few on campus events for the summer school students, as well as working orientations for the incoming students. Will you pray for the students we will meet during these events this summer? Because it's summertime doesn't mean God stops working! Please pray that we would have eyes to see who God wants us to meet and impact.
One of our very own UTA students is on the website this month! Check out what Brooklyn has to say about how college ministry has impacted her:

Thank you all for reading and keeping up with what God is doing! I will be contacting you again soon!

With love,

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