Friday, October 18, 2013

We're Halfway There & Livin' on a Prayer!

Yes! It's true! We've reached the 50% mark of our support goal! We're halfway to being 100% funded and beginning this new adventure of college ministry! Hopefully you've heard the song "Livin' on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi- if not do yourself a favor and go listen so you'll gain a little knowledge of pop culture and the reason behind this blog post's title.

Anyways- We're halfway there!  And we are literally livin' on a prayer! We can't take credit for a single dollar of that 50%. Every penny has been provided by God, so we must give Him the Glory! It has been absolutely incredible to watch God provide for us through people in our community. If you're into numbers you might be impressed that 25% of our current monthly support has come from people that we had never met before we contacted them! Only God can do that!! 

50%! YAYYY!!!!

Trusting God to provide for our finances has stretched our faith in so many ways. If you're new to this blog- John and I are on staff with Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) and do college ministry with Greek Impact at USC. Because Cru is a non profit organization with no central funding, we have the responsibility of raising all of the money that makes up our salary, taxes, health benefits, retirement fund, and any ministry expenses. In other words, if people don't give to our ministry- we don't get a pay check.

Raising your own paycheck is an incredibly daunting task when first presented with the idea. However, over the last four months God has shown us that it is a wonderful opportunity to grow in our faith and trust Him more fully. Now, not only do we have to trust Him to meet our emotional and spiritual needs, but we must trust Him to meet our physical needs of food, clothing, and shelter. When most people hear that we raise our support- we get a look filled with a combination of shock, pity, and confusion. And I can't blame them. My first reaction to the knowledge that I'd have to raise my own paycheck was not a good one. I was fearful, I doubted that God would provide, and I was way too prideful to entertain the idea of asking friends, family, and strangers for money. I couldn't imagine anything more uncomfortable.

Since we first began on this journey God has completely changed our hearts and feelings about support raising. We have gone from dreading the idea to truly embracing the biblical teachings of missionaries and pastors receiving their income from God's people giving generously. 

We have gone from viewing support raising as something we have to do- to something that we get to do. We now see that it is truly a privilege. 

It is a privilege to humble ourselves, to rely completely on God, to ask people to join us in our mission of telling college students about God's love and forgiveness. It's a privilege to meet people that we didn't know before, to be vulnerable and share our stories of redemption with them. It's even more of a privilege when they open up to share their own personal experiences and prayer requests. It's a privilege to have a team of ministry partners- not just people who will electronically deposit money into our account- but people who will join us in praying for God to do work on USC's campus. People who we now consider friends and who we will be praying for as well. It's a privilege to challenge God's children to step out of their financial comfort zones and give sacrificially. Not because our ministry is a worthy cause, but because God is calling them to trust Him with every area of their lives, including their finances. Depending on God to provide for us each month is absolutely a privilege. And asking people to be a part of God's provision is truly an honor.

So, THANK YOU, thank you so much to everyone who has joined us financially and to those of you who have joined us in praying for God's provision. Please continue to pray for the rest of our support to come in quickly! We are hoping to be fully funded and on campus by second semester in January! 

Praise the Lord. 

Praise God in His sanctuary,
Praise Him in His mighty heavens.
Praise Him for His acts of power;
Praise Him for His surpassing greatness. 
Praise Him with the sounding of the trumpet, 
Praise Him with the harp and lyre, 
Praise Him with the timbrel and dancing, 
Praise Him with clash of cymbals, 
Praise Him with resounding cymbals.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! 
Praise the Lord.

Psalm 150:1-6