From our family to yours: Thank You!
These past months have been a little more difficult than usual, and your prayers, support and encouragement have been spurring us on (seriously, keep ’em coming!). Fall programming has begun for our youth and families, and as you read below you’ll see a bit of what God has been doing and what is coming up. I’ll also be asking you for specific prayer requests and ways you could partner with us in making disiciples in North Minneapolis.
A long term dream of ours is to build relationships with neighborhood youth that would disciple them into Sonship with Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “My sheep will know my voice and they will follow me. A strangers voice they will not follow.” [John 10] We live in a culture of voices dominated by the enemy of our souls. The goal of our programming isn’t just to hangout or provide a safe space for these children. We want them to know the voice of their Father in heaven, and follow Him all the days of their life. We believe that in submitted relationship to God and each other, we can begin to address needs in our lives like: fatherlessness, poverty, addiction, lust, and many other forms of brokenness.
Because of this belief, each week we offer times of fellowship, games, meals, and Bible Study. In addition to regular programming, we seek ways to invest in the lives of our youth relationally. The goal of these times is to build discipling relationships that can see these youth through their transition into adulthood. We partner with a local ministry called Antioch, and offer programming 2 times/week.
Tuesdays @ the 810 House
This is a new venture for us at our discipleship home. Every Tuesday from 4-6, we meet with local kids and learn about God and create something together. This is our way of doing things with the kids, not for them. In this process we get to gain special insight into their personality and God given gifts.
Fremont House (Antioch Home)
Thursdays are a special night for all of our neighbors. Just 4 blocks from 810, we have an official meal time, bible study time, game time, and seek to develop mentoring relationships with local youth. This year, we’ve challenged two of our 13 year olds to take over leadership roles and it’s been beautiful to see them both rise to the occasion.
We partner with BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) every Tuesday evening from 7-9 pm. This is a time for us as local men to pray for each other, encourage each other in our walks, and study the Word. This year’s study is in Romans, and already we’ve been addressing topics of sin and God’s grace.
In addition, we meet Sundays for house fellowship and do our best to be present to our neighbors in their times of need. There’s been a lot of transition in our neighborhood these past months. People we’ve known and been involved with for the past couple years have moved out (voluntarily or otherwise), and new families are moving in. This has been challenging and we ask your prayers for quick trust and relationships to be established with the new families. We need a generous amount of grace and wisdom right now, as some of these families are currently walking in gross darkness.
Through it all, I am amazed with our children and their growth in humility, grace, peace, and love. I hesitate to share many of the stories we’ve been experiencing, but a small example happened over the weekend. It was Hannah’s 13th birthday party, and we were set to load up the van to spend the day at the MOA with her friends. As we walked outside, we noticed the window of our van was smashed in. Our kids didn’t crumble or
complain, but got the vacuum and garbage bags and cleaned it all up. We even laughed riding around the following days as it began raining. This led to a wonderful conversation with Hannah about the nature of sin, why people do stupid things, and God’s judgement and wrath. We discussed how God’s wrath is being stored up for judgement, but He is patient with us not wanting anyone to suffer for eternity without Him. “I don’t understand God’s love, but I want to have it,” was her conclusion. As we prayed for God’s Holy Spirit to fill us, I kept thinking that I’d have a million windows broken to have this conversation and chance to pray with my daughter.
We are still seeking female volunteers to help with our Tuesday or Thursday youth programming. Please reach out if you are feeling called to
work with youth in our city!
In addition to our weekly outreaches, we strive to plan 1 special outreach per month. This month, we’ll be looking to interact with our neighbors on Halloween. This will be our 3rd annual Halloween outreach, and the whole family gets involved. We play games in the yard for local kids to win candy and show some type of Jesus film. The goal is to interact with neighbors in the love of Jesus and pray with them. Feel free to join us!
- Ministry Impact: We want every child and home represented to know the Gospel. Please pray with us that the Holy Spirit would bring revelation of His love to these families hearts.
- Volunteers: Pray that God would raise up the right leaders and mentors for these youth.
- Faith and Vision: Please pray with us and content with us for the good fight of faith. We don’t want circumstances to dictate our belief. We want God’s Kingdom to be made manifest here.
- Resources: If you have access to thought provoking games, materials for crafts, baking stuff, or a team that would like to provide a meal on Thursday nights, please let us know!
- Perseverance: could you continue to pray for our encouragement? Miah is in her last semester of school and her time is very stretched right now.
Please pray for grace, focus, and clarity in her life. Pray for grace and peace to cover myself and the kids as she finishes strong.
- Provision and Wisdom: We are still in need of more monthly financial partners. Do you have a church or small group that would like to hear more about what we do with youth and families in the city? We’d love to chat with them. Let us know!
Thank you again for your prayers, encouragement and gifts. THANK YOU!