Staff Retreat, SICM, and Welcome Week

 Hey all,


We just got back from our summer staff retreat! It was 3 days all together with our staffs across the many campuses, as well as the 19 apprentices we're going to have on our teams this next year! This is our biggest group of apprentices yet, which is very exciting and a huge gift from God that he blessed us with so many young people ready to take ten months of their lives to serve and learn in this ministry. 

The retreat was really a good reset button from the Summer as we got to be all back together and prepare for the upcoming school year. The theme of our retreat this year centered on the Galatians 2:20 passage:         "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me."

This passage framed our sessions as we talked about what it looks like in our lives to crucify the old self, the self that God wants to make new. It involves giving up our own will and desires and anything God asks of us and submitting that to Him. The beauty of that submission as we remember the crucifixion narrative is that God resurrects. We give up what we hold to in full trust that God will also carry us through that and make something much much richer out of that faithful submission. 

We're about to go to SICM Texas Edition!! We normally take a group of our students up to Washington state for a week of training before they go out to be student leaders on the campus, but this year we're doing it in Rocksprings TX and coming back hopefully fueled and equipped to go straight into the school year the week we return. Please be praying for this week. We leave this Sunday and will be gone through Friday, so please pray for that time to be a huge energizer for our body, that it would spark learning and growth and love for God that we can return with and pour back out onto these campuses. We're praying for big things as we go out on campus seeking to meet students and invite them to know Jesus, so please join us in praying for a work of the Lord this year. We're going back to lonely and isolated students, and we feel that this could be a year unlike others for that reason. People will be wanting connection and peace and frankly, God, whether they know it or not. So join us in praying for those students.  

I'm really excited about our Denton team this year. We're going from a team of 5 to a team of 8! We have three apprentices joining our crew up here to serve TWU and UNT. Can't wait to get to know them better. 

Our staff team for the fall: L to R: Drew, Darby (me) Becca, Reagann, Cole, Shayla and Steven


And of course, I'd be remiss not to mention our favorite little guy. He's smiling a lot now, and we're in major joy mode getting to be around this sweet guy. 

Love you guys, please respond with anything I can be praying about for you. 

Ryan 

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