Last week, I had the pleasure of visiting two new schools (new to me) that were either wanting to start an FCA Huddle or have been going with no FCA staff presence. In both of these situations I was blessed to meet teachers that genuinely care for their students and want to see them come to know Christ. In both situations I was able to leave one of our FCA Coaches Bibles with the teacher and it was great to see how they were so appreciative to not only have a copy of God’s Word, but one specifically designed to help them grow in their walk as coaches/teachers and reach their students. Coming out of the Christmas season I have given many gifts lately. However, it was so refreshing and just a blessing to me to see true joy that comes from giving and receiving gifts that will make an impact on eternity for Christ. I pray that God will give me more and more opportunities to share gifts of the Gospel!
One 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!!!
This morning I was once again blessed to spend time with some of our middle school students at our weekly FCA Huddle. Last week we were down in numbers, but this week we were busting at the seems with almost 40 students in attendance. Many of the students that were there weren’t at our Rec Center NYE Teen Lock-In where I gave the devotion. So for this morning’s devotion I did a shorter version of the one I gave New Year’s Eve. I talked to the students about how they don’t need to let others and themselves label and determine who and how they will be as people. I encouraged them that God has a plan specifically for them and He is the only one who has a right to label and direct their paths. It seemed like most of our students were listening today as I challenged them to accept Christ and follow His will for their lives if they haven’t already, and if they have already, I challenged them to not let labels hold them back from following a God they know loves them so very much. Please pray for our students as they think about our devotion this morning that they won’t let the labels that the world give them and the patterns the world tries to put them in determine the course of their lives. Pray that they will submit to God and trust that he has the perfect path for their lives!
For the last several years, my wife Erin and I have been blessed to help lead FCA Huddles at our local high school and middle school. One of hte trends we have seen over the years is that one year a school will be up and another will be down in huddle attendance and then the next year it will switch.
This year we are in one of those years where our middle school huddle is really booming with 30 to 40 students attending each week. The kids are eager to attend and we have had some truly great interaction with them. Our high school huddle on the other hand is in a bit more of a down year. We have about 6 to 8 students who attend faithfully and we are truly thankful for the growth we have seen in their lives. At the same time it has been very disheartning at the high school as each week I have seen many kids who have came to FCA in the past and even attended leadership camps with us, just walking the hallways and not coming to our huddles. Most of these students I have been able to speak with and invite back and thankfully they aren’t coming because of being upset or anything like that. Honestly, they don’t really have any reason other than not making the effort to be there.
Please join me in faithfully praying for all our FCA students, but especially the high school students. Pray for the ones that are faithful and wanting to grow in their walk with Christ, that they wouldn’t be distracted and sidetracked like it seems so many other students have been. Pray for the students who are not attending, that God would become a priority in their life. We would love to have them back at FCA, but more than anything want to see them strive to grow in their walk with God and impact their schools for Christ. And lastly, pray for a group I haven’t event mentioned, our students who have graduated and are in college that they would continue to seek fellowship with other believers and grow in their relationship with Christ.
A couple of weeks ago we started back to school with our weekly FCA Huddles at Lee County High School and Middle School. It’s been great getting back to seeing our students each week and being able to share with them from God’s word in their schools. The exciting thing to report has been the growth in our Middle School FCA Huddle. This year we are averaging over 40 students a week and they are not only excited to be there, but they are bringing their friends. Our Huddle at the high school is doing well in that we have a faithful core group of students who are coming and we are really enjoying getting to know better. However, we have lost a lot of students who came last year. Please pray for us that we will be able to get these students to come back and participate. Also, be praying for my wife Erin as she is hoping to start a Bible study with some of our older FCA students and even one or two of our former students. We are excited to see God do something great this year through our FCA Huddles and as you to pray for us and our students each day!
Last night, I had a chance to speak at the church where I grew up and where my dad is a pastor. As you may know from previous posts I am not the most comfortable when it comes to preaching to adults and so since I found out I was speaking last week I was a nervous wreck trying to think about what to speak on. Finally, after much prayer, I felt God directing to share with the church about what we are going to be doing in our FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) huddles this year. The church I was speaking has been a very faithful prayer and financial partner for our huddles and so I wanted to give them a bit of an insight as what we do in our huddles.
This year our theme is “Undefeated” and comes from 1 Corinthians 15:57, which says, “But thanks be to God, who gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!” (HCSB) Through our relationship with Christ we know that we can have victory over whatever comes at us in this life and we have the promise that one day sin and death will be defeated and we will live eternally with Christ in Heaven. This is how we are “Undefeated!” In particular, I shared with the church last night about how we can be on the path to being “Undefeated” by realizing that Humility beats Pride. Pride is one of those things that Satan uses to hold us back, fracture relationships, and keep us defeated. But when we realize we can only do anything through Christ and that all our gifts and talents come through Him, then we can have victory over pride. When we realize that Christ poured out all his power and came in the form of a servant to live, die and rise again for our sins, we see the ultimate example of humility for us to follow and defeat pride in our lives.
It awesome to see how God allowed me to go from being nervous about speaking to excited about sharing about these exciting truths we will be teaching our FCA students this year. I asked the church to be praying for our students that we will see those who know Christ to come a deeper love and devotion to Him this year. Also to be praying that they will impact their schools and that we will see many students accept Christ as their personal savior. I’d like to ask you to be praying for these same things. Pray that God will move and work mighty in our Lee County High and Middle School FCA Huddles this year!
With the whirlwind that was the last day and a half of camp I wasn’t able to to post about what happened due to know time available. However I am happy to tell you that God truly blessed and worked through the lives of our students. On Saturday the students had their big event of the weekend. The one thing that they all love, but are scared to death of at the same time. They went out into Campbellsville, KY on Saturday afternoon on their annual faith trip. On this trip the students take all the training they have received at camp and go out door to door in the surrounding community and share their faith with complete strangers. I personally love when they come back to campus and I get the opportunity to spend time hearing about all their experiences and how exciting it was for them to share their faith. We now ask that you pray that this boldness and excitement will carry on now that they are home and that they will be bold in their home, school, and community here in Lee County.
On Saturday evening the students were put to work in chapel. Our speaker, Mark Cahill, did a talk where the first 20 minutes he gave a talk about various aspects of Christianity and sprinkled in several false teachings. Then for the next hour he asked the students to tell him what of what he said was wrong and find scriptures to prove it. It was great to see our students listen so intently and pull out their Bible searching for answers. It was a challenge that they don’t typically get but rose to the occasion to seek truth in God’s Word!
Sunday was a great wrap up of all the various aspects of camp that our students love. The once again got to spend time praising God through song and prayer. Both of the speakers at camp issued final challenges to the students to be bold in their faith at home and school. Maeven and Judah even got in on the final chapel services as their kids camp sang in front of over 500 FCA students and leaders!
One of my favorite parts of camp is when the students are getting ready to leave, as we watch them say good by to good friends that they met at camp. These are friendships based in a mutual love of Christ and have potential to be life long and life changing relationships.
FCA Leadership Camp 2015 was definitely a huge success. If you helped support us through prayer, finances, or both we thank you so very much. Keep praying that our students will be bold for Christ with all they have learned at camp and will keep striving to grow in their relationship with Him!