Driving home from Florida has been more than we bargained for. You expect the vans to be filled with a variety of conversations, singing, and sleeping travelers. And we’ve had plenty of all three. But after our dinner stop at Chick-fil-a and Zaxby’s (which included an opportunity for some on the team to pray with an employee) we had an unexpected occurrence. Just before midnight, as Shosh was driving one of our three vans up I75, the front passenger seat window simply SHATTERED! Fortunately Shosh was a rock and didn’t panic but kept the van steady and had Connor let us know to pull over.
Two rolls of Duct tape (and Gorilla tape), a roll of plastic sheeting and some good old-fashioned ingenuity “fixed” the window and got us back on our way – with just a little delay.
Thank God with us for his protection!! (And for Shosh’s nerves of steel)
Today was the final day of “official” ministry and while it was a wonderful day, it was really hard. Saying goodbye to new friends, leaving behind those we have come to love can be really painful. We have seen lives changed. But we have also seen lives open to change but the process is going to be ongoing and hard. It’s difficult to leave and not know the outcome but we believe and trust that God loves these friends more than we ever could. The day was full of hugs and full of tears…but to hurt over the brokenness of the world is the closest we will be to understanding the heart if our Father.
Pray with us for these new (and old) friends. That God will send others to love and comfort and care for these precious friends.
While the official time is over we still look forward to tomorrow and the trip home (and life back on campus) to continue looking for opportunities to love people the way Christ did and to continue to experience the joy of living within the community we found together this week.
Yesterday was cold…really cold….cold, windy desolate…..something like this….
Okay, maybe not this desolate, but you get the idea…
People were few and far between…
But as we recapped the day last night and went over the things that happened we were again amazed at the goodness and faithfulness of our God…
We had amazing opportunities to be with beautiful families (with lively kids), we had the chance to engage with a Muslim family that was gracious to discuss the differences and similarities between our faiths, we again had time to talk with members of the homeless community and engaged with a gentleman that astounded members of our team with his amazing intelligence and memorization of the Bible, we engaged young couples in deep conversations and were able to pray with and for them, we were encouraged by strong believers who gave words of encouragement and we spent sweet time worshiping on the beach with our friends from across the street. Beach Worship
After dinner we once again had the awesome opportunity to go to Ocean View where we spent time worshiping with the residents of the home. This is annually one of the most beautiful events for us as we get to experience a true worship opportunity with the residents. This video is just a small taste of the amazing experience. Ocean View Worship
Continue to pray as we seek to follow God’s leading!
Except for the times when a person gives their life to the Lord, it’s a rare opportunity to receive feedback in beach ministry. But yesterday the rare thing happened. Three of our team were out talking to people when they encountered two high school guys. In talking with them, one was particularly touched by the conversation and expressed that he had all but given up on God. His friend had been praying that he would somehow find his way back to faith. When our team left, they gave the guys their number and told them to contact them if they had questions. Later that night our team received the following text:
Hey, I want to thank you guys today because this is the closest I’ve ever had to my faith being restored. Idk if you’re real or my guardian angel or what but I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. A little bit after we talked I broke down for the first time ever and it had to do with you guys. Keep doing what you’re doing even if you get shut down repeatedly because you definitely made a lasting impact in my life. And I only talked to you guys for 30 mins at most
So thankful for God’s kindness in sharing this encouragement with us. Keep praying!!
This is not the forecast you want to see on the first day of beach ministry:
But even with the threat of rain the team was excited about the chance to get out on the beach and share Gods love with the people of Daytona. The night before had been an incredibly encouraging evening, as we worshipped together (this team LOVES to worship) and had a meaningful time of foot-washing,
and spent time prayer-walking on the beach were we would soon minister.
So as we headed out in the midst of wind and clouds, our spirits were not dampened. And as we met back after the day we were amazed by Gods faithfulness in bringing people into our paths, enabling us to minister in exciting ways. We met, and conversed with Muslims, Hindus and Mormons. With old, young, wealthy and homeless. We had the privilege of meeting so many image bearers of God…and this is just day 1!
Keep praying for more opportunities and for us to be faithful when the opportunities present themselves. The team is growing close and really enjoying, and encouraging, each other.
While we would love sunshine…we would rather have more days like today.
After driving through the night…with really limited breaks, we arrived this morning in Daytona Beach-home to the beautiful El Caribe Hotel. For many of us it’s like returning home!
We are a little tired but excited to unwind from the trip and enjoy a day if rest and a little sun.
Thanks for all your prayers. We are thankful for the safety we enjoyed and the chance we had to be together.
Keep praying that God will use us this week.
Prayer and Worship time
We are getting ready to go!
In a little over 40 hours we will be filling up three vans (with people, luggage and various musical items) and head south for our time in Daytona. The team has been preparing for the trip and are excited to see what God is going to do! Wanted to encourage you to pray with us as we get ready to go.
- Thank God, with us, that we have received the finances needed to cover the cost of the trip!
- Pray that each member of the team will be able to finish their work this week so we can head to Daytona fully engaged in what God is planning to do.
- Pray for safety as we drive our white vans through the night.
- Pray that our hearts, and the hearts of the people we will meet, will be prepared for an encounter with the living God!
Ultimately, we would ask that you would pray with us that God would be glorified in all that we do and say!
Thanks for your support and your continued prayers.
Because Daytona Beach is one of the most popular Spring Break destinations in the US, especially among college students and young adults, it houses a great opportunity to witness not only to the local community in Daytona, but also to people from all over. Alongside experienced leaders, Steve and Erika Mortland, you will spend your days on the beach, at a community park, and in and out of various low income and homeless centers in the area. Through simply playing volleyball, offering a beverage and just hanging out, you will have the opportunity to build relationships and discuss Christ and the hope He is to you with hundreds of people from all walks of life.
- Pray that we would be able to speak the truth to people in need with NO fear
- Pray that we would have Radical Boldness!
- Pray that we would be able to share Jesus out of sincerity
- Pray that we would be unified as a team
- Pray that we could dive deeper into what it means to live with a kingdom mindset so that sharing about it is not a formula, but an overflow from our own lives, and who Jesus is to us personally.
Jeremiah 20:9 – But if I say, “I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name,” his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones.
I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.
John 15:5 – “I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”