What God Did This Year

 Hey,


    The year has come to a close and there is so much that has happened recently and throughout the whole year that I want to tell you about. God has taught me and others through me a lot this year. I am honored to have been able to do this apprenticeship and to be believed in by so many people that trusted me to learn and share Jesus with people. Thank you so much for your generosity! It allowed me to do this and God used it to show me things about myself, things about him, and things about community. Thank you all so much for your prayers and for investing in my life in whatever ways that you have.


Ryan my mentor has been a great friend and leader for me this year, I have learned so much from him. God has used him a lot to show me grace and patience while wanting what is better for me.

    There is a lot I want to say about what I have learned this year and what all has happened but I will try to keep it short and use as much pictures as I can. Thankfully one of our last assignments of the apprenticeship was to give a sermon about our three biggest takeaways from the year. So, if you want to know more you can watch that right below here. Also, feel free to reach out to me in any way to talk more about it. click here for my three biggest takeaways from the year sermon



From right to left: Steven, Becca, and me. The three Denton apprentices this year. I could not have learned as much, experienced the love of God as much, or had as much fun this year without them. They love God and people so well.

    In case you don't get a chance to watch the sermon I'll give you my three biggest takeaways in a longer form here: turn back to Jesus again and again he wants you to, righteousness isn't about goodness but about real life, and Jesus dwells through the church now to his creation. These are things that I know I regularly need to be reminded of. God doesn't want me to get myself right before coming to him. What was the point of Jesus? He is far more concerned with me coming back to him for relationship and inviting others to do the same then he is for me to get caught up worrying about how I am still stuck in the same sin I have been for years. Something that Ronnie (one of our wise teachers who has been doing ministry for over forty years and who had the vision for this ministry) told me is that it is our work just to believe that God really is that good. He really is, God is just that good. He loves us even as we have sinned against him for the seventh time the seventy-seventh time. Praise God that he is that good and go back to him regularly to see that He is.



Most of my small group from the year at the end of year party. From right to left: Stephen, Joseph, Chuwku, Lap, me, and Alex (my co-leader). Most of these guys got involved this last semester and jumped right in. They have made the last couple months really sweet. 

      Chuwku joined this Spring semester in core and I got to study the bible with him and meet up with him every week. He is moving in with Alex and some other guys in the ministry and will be living in community next year! We also got to send him along with many other Denton students to our annual (SICM) Student Institute of Campus Ministry conference in Bellingham, WA. That is where I went five years ago as a student and first started understanding how to invite people into discipleship and community. Maybe five years from now Chukwu will do the apprenticeship, hahaha. We held a fundraiser after one of our large group gatherings to be able to send him and it was eye opening to see the amount of generosity our students have. Some people paid $20 or $30 just for pancakes to help him go. If you're interested in seeing more of what SICM is about here is a video a friend of mine made that does a great job. I am in it quite a bit :) click here for SICM video



The student leader team at our end of year party. I am going to miss a lot of these people. It really is them that God uses to keep this ministry meeting, loving, and discipling new students.

    Finally, thank you all again so much! My life has been forever enhanced by being able to do the apprenticeship and I could not have done it without you. I pray that you may be blessed with real life and be aware of your need for Jesus always. God is good. Praise Him! Please stay in touch and I will try my best to do the same. For those that don't know I have decided to go back to UT Arlington next year for my Masters in Landscape Architecture and I am planning on getting more involved in the church that I was a part of there. I know that God is going to continue to use what I have learned this year for myself and those around me. So, again Thank You!! If you haven't heard from me about seeing if you're interested in continuing to support what FOCUS is doing either in Denton, with another of our staff members, or another campus please let me know. If you're not interested in continuing and want to stop your recurring giving then you can use this as reference for how to do that. How to end recurring donations starts on page four.

 https://anyfocus.org/onlinegivinghelp


God bless you and much love,


Cole


Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask from the Lord,
    this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
    all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
    and to seek him in his temple.



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