I really would like to thank you all for your prayers and support. God has absolutely blown my mind with what He is doing out here and how we get to be a part of it. It has been over 5 months here and even though there has been a lot change and spiritual growth, there is still a lot more ministry to be done.
My heart and passion is to tell people the good news of Jesus Christ and to teach others to do the same through discipleship. This requires a lot of pouring into people, spending time with them and giving them direction on how to go about the specific ministry they are called to.
What I have seen since I have been here is a new excitement to seek the Lord from all ages within the church. We have even started a new youth group for ages 13-18 to give them a place to worship with people their age. This has been amazing and to see the youth be excited about their faith is such an encouragement. How we have implemented discipleship into the youth, is by pouring into 5 youth leaders to train them up to be able to run the group by themselves. Each week we go through a new leadership quality and then give them the opportunity to implement it through service. Through this we have seen a lot of spiritual growth.
We have transitioned the old youth group into a young adults group and they have become more focused in their faith. Because of this are hearing stories about people living out their faith in the world and not just being church Christians anymore. They are also learning how to exegete and study the scriptures while allowing it to transform their lives.
The latest project within the church is connect groups. As we restructure the overall layout of the church and become more discipleship oriented we are finding that small groups are the core of spiritual growth and living an Acts 2:42 lifestyle. So our plan is to train up solid leaders that will grow the group and make more solid leaders to multiply the connect groups.
Another big change within the church is getting people to outreach and serve their community. Each month we have gone into one of the poorest areas in New Zealand to serve them food and tell them the good news of Jesus. This has been exciting and we have seen many people come to Christ through this.
Since the church meets at a school, it has been really hard to break through and build a relationship with the principal of the school. Each week the Pastor goes to the school and prays for the kids, teachers, and the principal. Through this we have seen a huge breakthrough and God has opened up a door for me to come and serve them in the area of coaching soccer to the kids. The school doesn’t have the funds to pay a coach, so different teachers come and help out. The head athletics director has invited me to come and help out each week by coaching about 60 kids. My hope is that this will show the school that we are there for them and want to serve and help them in any way that we can.
This is just a little bit of what has been going on here in Auckland, New Zealand and I am expecting God to continue to show up in so many more ways. Just seeing how the doors opened up for me to get here, and the doors being closed back in the States, I know without a doubt that this is where God wants me for the rest of the year. He has provided cars to drive, houses to stay at, and enough money for food. So that is my commitment to the local church here. I will be staying here to help pastor the church, the youth and the young adults while continuing to train up people to do multimedia, photography, graphics, and anything else they might need help in.
Thank you again for all your prayers and support. It’s exciting that we get to be part of what God is doing out here.
Also, if you or you know anybody that wants to be part of the financial support team please let me know and I will send you the giving link. Thank you sooo much!!! God bless you!