getting ready for the Super Bowl…

SuperbowlbannerOne of my favorite outreaches that I am involved in each year is our annual Lee County FCA Super Bowl Party.  My wife and I, invite all our local FCA students over to our house for a fun night of watching the big game, funny commercials, and eating lots of good food.  As soon as time winds down in the second quarter we turn off the tv and settle the students down for some time in The Word.  Each year I make sure to do a full Gospel presentation for students that might not know Christ and also a challenge to those students who have put their faith in Christ.  This year will be no different in that all our students will be challenged to examine themselves and where they are in their walk with Christ, and if they have one at all.  Please be praying for all our students in the next few days leading up to this outreach that God would already begin working in their hearts and that they would make a decision to fully follow him on Sunday.  Also, please be praying for me as I prepare to share a challenge to them from God’s Word.  Yes, we are expecting to have fun on Sunday, but most importantly we are expecting God to do great things!!!

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A Cosmic Christmas…

Yesterday, at the Rec Center we celebrated Christmas with our After School Jr. Bowling League students. We call this our Cosmic Christmas party because we have a lot of fun cosmic bowling to Christmas music. The kids are always excited to bowl around and jump around under the cosmic lights and Christmas music. However, this is not the main reason for the party. A lot of the ministry that we do with these students is typically relational. As we help them with their bowling we get to know the students and build relationships where we can share Jesus and also connect them to local churches. At our Christmas party though, we take the the opportunity to share about why we celebrate Christmas and why Jesus came to earth. Yesterday, I was able to share the true Christmas story with our students by reading from “The Jesus Storybook Bible.” I love sharing from this kids version because it ties in the coming of the Christ-child with why He came. To be able to share this life changing message with so many of our students was a true honor. Please be praying that the words of truth that were shared about Jesus will have an eternity changing impact on the lives of our students and parents who were present!

my princess is 3 today…

Birthday Princess Maeven...

Birthday Princess Maeven…

It’s hard to believe but this time three years ago, we were celebrating the arrival of our beautiful little girl Maeven.  I was a nervous wreck becoming a first time daddy and totally not a clue as to all that I was about to face.  Thankfully, God protected Maeven from our ignorance and we have loved every minute with her.  I can’t believe she is so big already.  We love watching her play princess and run around the house singing her Veggie Tales praise songs.  I am truly blessed and thankful for my little girl and can’t wait to see all that God is going to do in her life!

an update to this morning’s post…

a student bowling...

a student bowling…

Thank you all so much for praying about our day here at the Rec Center.   It was a busy one that required lots of energy and prayers so I truly thank you.   We wended up having over 73 students and some adult supervisors who came out to bowl from the local high school and middle school.  They kept us hopping and were always on the go, but were wonderfully behaved.   I am so thankful for the opportunity we had to interact with them and make some new friends.  Hopefully the students will keep coming back to the Rec Center and we will have more and more opportunities to share Jesus with them.  Thanks again for all your prayers!

thankful for “all” my family…

Our families celebrating Judah's birthday!

Our families celebrating Judah’s birthday!

Yesterday, our family gathered together to celebrate Judah’s 1st birthday!  Thankfully he is still young enough to not know that he didn’t get a party on his birthday due to getting everyone’s schedules to line up.  He was thrilled though to play both with his cake and his new presents.   After watching him on his new basketball goal, I think I have a future NBA player on my hands, but that could just be the proud papa in me talking.

My parents and sister and Erin’s parents all joined us on celebrating Judah’s big day and it was great just enjoying each other’s company.  As I sat their watching everyone interact, I was once again reminded about how thankful I am for all of my family, both sides!  So often I have heard of friends and family that have stressful situations or total fall outs with one or both sides of their families.  Yet, there I sat yesterday realizing how much God blessed Erin and I with Godly parents that love Him and have been totally supporting to us.  Not only do we get along with them, they get along with each other!    Family is truly a special thing, and I am so very thankful for ours.

bowling for the first time…

Kids bowling for the first time...

Kids bowling for the first time…

When the Rec Center was just an idea a few years back, one of the things we really wanted to do was provide a fun place with thing to do that you just couldn’t do anywhere else around us. At that time the nearest bowling alley was around an hour away, or maybe a little less depending on how you drive. Many people in our community had either rarely been bowling or never at all. The church I attended at that time took their students bowling once a year and that was really the only time I ever bowled. So, over the past few years as the Rec Center has been open with our bowling lanes one of the things I have really enjoyed is getting to see kids’ faces light up as they roll that bowling ball for the first time.

This morning I was surprised with bowling group from a small nearby Christian school. Most if not all of the students had never bowled before. I couldn’t help but smile as I saw them get excited to just knock one pin down, and even more excited if someone got a strike. Unlike some of the competitive leagues they were cheering each other on and chanting each other’s names in encouragement. It was a truly precious sight.

Our main goal here at the Rec Center is to use bowling and other recreation as a tool to bring in people for various outreaches and to build relationships to be able to share the Gospel. It’s been great to have the opportunity to do that and to see the joy in our kids faces. God has truly blessed us!

celebrating baby girl…

Today was a special day for us here at Casa de Owens, we celebrated Maeven’s 2nd Birthday.  Technically she doesn’t turn 2 until next Sunday, but Erin is in a wedding in North Carolina next weekend so we all gathered together today.  Both my parents and Erin’s were able to join us and my Grandparents came in all the way from Michigan.  On top of that we were joined by some of Maeven’s friends and the fun began.  By far the hit of the day was the pop up tent and tunnel play land Erin and I got Maeven for her bedroom.  It includes lots of little games a soccer goal, nerf style baskeball hoops and lot of other things that the kids really enjoyed.

The theme of the party was Cupcakes and Aunt Amanda made us some very delicious cupcakes to enjoy.  Everyone also got to make their own cupcake necklaces.   I must stay it was fun to watch all the grandparents wearing reading glasses to try and put the beads together on their necklaces.  Maeven got all kinds of things that she really enjoys like bath toys, play dough toys, money, puzzles, and of course Curious George!  I do think the best present she enjoyed was just having kids to run around and play with!

For me it was great to have a day with all of our family to celebrate this precious gift that God has given us in Maeven.   She is a true joy and a very happy child.  God has blessed me with a very sweet and beautiful little girl.  I can’t wait to spend many more birthdays with her!