2015-09-09 OneEightyOne Update

2015-08-30 18.07.41

A couple of weeks ago we started our school year off with a cookout – our School Year Kickoff Cookout. Tonight was another fun start – the restart of IMPACT Night and Youth Group. I’m excited for all that God has in store for us this year.

At our School Year Kickoff Cookout we distributed our 2015-2016 Ministry Calendar. If you missed it – you can get your copy HERE.

Read more…

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 7 (Lots of Pictures)

2015-08-01 09.46.15

Well, we made it home safe and sound. On our return trip we enjoyed a stop at the Creation Museum. It was a fun and relaxing way to close out our trip.

Thanks for the many ways you supported us – especially through prayer!

Here are a bunch of yet unposted pictures from the week. Enjoy!

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 6

What an amazing and fulfilling week. I’m excited to report that we finished up all of our projects this morning. This 48,000 square foot ministry facility hasn’t looked this good in a long time. It’s much more inviting for their daily and weekly outreach ministries as well as for their weekly church services.

One of the morning highlights was delivering thousands of hygiene and school supplies to the adjacent elementary school. They were overwhelmed and blessed. It’s exciting to see KIDS Inc’s growing partnership with this school.

During lunch we got to hear Rhonda’s faith story. She’s one of the ladies in the community who have trusted Christ out of some very painful circumstances. We had the opportunity to help her around her property earlier in the week.

After lunch our team had some much needed down time as we prepped for a long afternoon, evening, and night. We finished up our VBS. The teens did an excellent job presenting the gospel to the kids each day.

Immediately following VBS we hosted a hot food meal for the community. Many families from the community attended. They enjoyed dinner, worship music from our team, faith stories from our youth, and a gospel presentation.

Immediately following this meal we hosted a 2 hour teen hang time for community youth. We served them dinner and got to play tons of games and hang out. Two other youth shared their faith stories, and we presented the gospel with an opportunity to respond.

We’re just about done. We have some final packing and cleaning to do in the morning before we head out. Before we come home, we’re taking the team to the Creation Museum. I’m sure they’ll have an awesome time if they can stay awake.

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 5

It’s a real joy to watch God work in and through our youth. This week has been a spiritual growth spurt for many of us. It’s exciting to see them stretch ministry muscles that they never knew they had.

Highlights from today:
1. Blessing two widows connected to this ministry with property upkeep.
2. Watching our students run a VBS nearly on their own.
3. Hearing from Jake from KIDS Inc. about how our work this week is helping them with their long term and sustainable ministry goals.
4. Enjoying dinner out on the town at a local restaurant.
5. Laughing together – a great sign of unity.

God’s doing great things. As usual, please keep this team in your prayers.


2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 4

Tonight’s post will be brief for three reasons:

  1. We’ve been busy, and I simply haven’t had time to upload photos yet
  2. We’ve been busy, and I’m tired
  3. We’ve been busy, but our ministry today was nearly identical to yesterday’s

So here are a few highlights:

  • God held off the predicted rain so that we could have a very successful VBS and move our outdoor projects ahead significantly
  • The team’s morale and spirits are high
  • After dinner we enjoyed a walking tour of downtown. Similar to downtown Cleveland, they have a circle, not a square
  • We all had some very delicious ice cream
  • We closed our time downtown with a powerful impromptu time of worship right on public circle

Tomorrow we will divide and conquer again. Two of our teams will be offsite at homes in the community helping several widows with their homes.

Until then – we appreciate your prayers!

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 2.2 Bonus Pictures

We know why you’re here.  🙂

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 3

This Mission Team is amazing. Monday was a tough day. Don’t get me wrong – it was amazing ministry, but it was long, hot, and exhausting. I went to bed praying for the youth’s energy and strength. (I pray that every night for the adults already.) I’m grateful that the Lord answered with abundant energy and gave renewed spirits and attitudes eager to serve. It’s been another amazing day. We have a great group of youth.

Today’s projects were very similar to yesterday’s. We got more painting done. One team tackled a hugely overgrown field and conquered it. Additionally they tackled the property of a neighbor who needed help. Another team sorted all of our hygiene and school supplies so that they’re ready for distribution at the end of this week. A final team worked on scraping and painting exterior doors. Tomorrow we hope to finish most of these projects.

Our kid’s club is growing. Yesterday we had 38 kids, and today we had 49. This is a great turn out for them, and it’s amazing to see the connections being made with families. In addition to crafts, games, snacks, and songs, the kids are hearing about God’s love each day. It’s exciting to watch.

Here are just a few personal highlights from the day:

  • Hearing our youth returning from a grueling task in the 90+ heat and humidity asking, “What can I do next?”
  • Seeing the local elementary school outreach director get moved to tears seeing our youth working with her kids and seeing the mountains of hygiene and school supplies we’re giving to her to distribute to needy families throughout the school year
  • Seeing a worker from the local elementary school walking over with 29 kids for VBS
  • Watching my 3 daughters jump in with the teens and serve on most of the projects
  • Encouraging our developing leaders run with worship, AV, recreation, crafts, snacks, etc. They’re not just helping. They’re doing and leading!
  • Getting to “spar” with a real live ninja (long story)

Please continue to pray for our safety and strength.

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 2

Whew – what a day! It’s fair to say that the team worked hard, and we accomplished a lot, on a variety of projects including:

  • Property Maintenance for KIDS Inc.: Some of our crew worked on beautifying their campus by trimming years of overgrowth on their hedges, cleaning up around the property, and weeding some of their flower beds.
  • Community Cleanup: Another part of our crew walked throughout the community picking up garbage and praying for various families throughout the neighborhood.
  • Painting: The rest of the crew prepped and taped halls for the painting we will do throughout the week.
  • Grocery Shopping: The Mom Squad (Grace & Kathy) went shopping to feed all 28 of us, and all of the kids coming out for VBS. Can you imagine feeding that many people for an entire week? They rock!

After lunch, we did the final prep for our VBS. It was so exciting to see one of the workers from the school bringing over an entire line of students from across the street. She attends church here, and gets what we’re trying to do – share the love of Christ with these kids and their families.

I’m excited to say that we had about 40 kids our first day, which is much more than they expected. I’m told that a turnout of 25 kids is typically a good turnout. Continue to pray for these kids and families as we love on them and share Christ with them.

Alright – I need to go play with the youth. There’s a rousing game of sardines underway, and Kaitlyn B. is an excellent hider.

2015 Indy Mission Trip – Day 1

First off – we made it, safe and sound, without incident. Praise God!

Before anything else is said, I want to thank the strong support we felt from Parma Heights Baptist Church both today in our commissioning and in the months leading up to this week. You are an encouragement and a blessing! I also want to thank the Bunchers who prepared and served us lunch at our sendoff. Yum! Also Phil Randolph, who stuck around to help us load the trailer – which was no small task.

Our travels were safe, and we made it here to KIDS Inc. right on time. After unpacking in the pouring rain, we settled into our dorms and had some orientation time. It’s been a long day, but we’re eager for the work God has for us in the morning.

We appreciate your prayers for safety and spiritual impact!

2015 Summer Mission Trip

Indy 2015

Tomorrow 28 from our Youth Ministry depart for Indianapolis for our summer mission trip. We’re partnering with a Christian inner-city ministry to kids and youth: KIDS Inc. While we’re there we’ll be helping with upkeep of their facilities, running a VBS for kids in their community, yard and property upkeep for their outreach families, organizing a community meal for needy families, working on the property of a nearby elementary school, distributing thousands of school supplies and hygiene products, and sharing our faith in Christ and the gospel all throughout.

We appreciate your prayers for safety and spiritual impact. Thanks!