Wednesday, June 11, 2008

7 Students Saved on Sunday

No pictures...but better than that is what happened on Sunday at FOCUS. We are in a series that is taking us through the story of the Bible (read more about it in my blog called "Sunday Series Update: The Story of the Bible). This Sunday (week 3) we finished up the Old Testament, and felt moved to start from the beginning and point out 4 or 5 ways that God, in his grace, has rescued his people despite their continual rejection and rebellion. I went on to explain that the entire Old Testament is pointing to Jesus...Noah's Ark=Jesus, Moses leading his people out of slavery=Jesus, etc... Again I felt moved by the Holy Spirit to pursue those who's hearts God was knocking, and explain the Gospel. We are messed up (more than we even know), Jesus was perfect and died a horrendous death, he rose 3 days later. And because of Jesus we can have a relationship with Him and live eternally in Heaven. I went on to ask the group of 55 students if any would like to, for the very first time, repent of their sin and follow Jesus. I asked them to make a bold statement by walking up front and stand next to me (I'm kinda tired of the "wussy" raise your hand thing, and people get lost, etc...). 1 student, 2 students, 4, and then on my last call the Holy Spirit moved 7 students forward to recieve a new life in Jesus (that's huge for a middle come forward in front of a huge group of peers?!). I asked the 7, if they believed they have sinned, if they are sorry to Jesus for rebelling, if they would to their best to obey him and to read the bible, and pray to him as often as they could. they agreed and we prayed. Our students clapped (I think...I can't remember because I was so moved by what God was doing). 
I'm still lost in that moment 3 days later, but i thought it would be cool for you to know that God is moving in Summit View...and specifically in our middle school ministry. Please pray for the 7. Pray that they would connect intimately to Jesus. Pray that they would have great hunger for the Bible and prayer. Pray that they would connect also to our ministry and to a small group. Pray that they would love Jesus more than anything. And pray that we would do our part in loving these students toward Jesus. Thanks for praying...and sorry for the lack of pictures on this blog.

Monday, June 2, 2008

the new me...

So...what do you think? There was a small movement of people that spread the rumor, "if we raise $_________ at the auction, casey will shave his head." the thing is....I haven't cut my hair since December 19th 2006!!! that's a year and a half. So, Brandon Angelo made the announcement at the beginning of the Auction that if we raise $30, know the rest. As my wife kept a running total, we looked to her for updates. As we worked our way closer to the end of the night, it seemed as if we weren't gonna come close to 30,000, so Dave Galanter started auctioning off swipes to my hair for $50 dollars. That wasn't made my stomach hurt. i didn't want to lose my hair. We raised  nearly $500 extra dollars toward our goal, and at the end of the night...for everyone elses pleasure, the winners, along with a few of my students (which i was really glad) took turns at the death of my "mop." In just a few short minutes my hair was gone. 


First Swipe


As i was saddened by that moment, I have to say that it has been freeing to not have it in my face when I sleep or read a book. To use a dime sized amount of shampoo, instead of half the bottle. So, my conclusing is this. I was bummed in the moment, but today i stand tall not regretting for a minute the small sacrifice made for me.  I love all you bidders and you 8th graders who cleaned up the mess that we called my hair. 

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Student Ministry Auction

This past Saturday night, May 31st, we held our 4th Annual auction. In past years, the auction has gone to support our high school ministry. This year our high school ministry and middle school ministry joined forces to make the auction, not only happen, but to be a huge success. The night started out with the normal silent auction and dinner. But to spice up the environment we dimmed the lights and had a live jazz band playing on stage. The food was great and the entertainment was...entertaining, and the testimonies grabbed our hearts. All in all, the night was a huge success. We had exactly 140 people attend, which is 60 more people than last year. We raised $10,000 dollars in scholarship funds, and...drum roll.........raised a grand total of $29,920. WOOOOOHOOOOO!!! It was a gigantic win. This dollar amount will be split down the middle between the high school and middle school ministries. As far as how much this lowered camp cost, this will be determined mid-week. I am excited about the turnout and the huge success that the night was. On behalf of our staff, student, and parents, thank you for your donations, support, and prayers for this event. God not only showed up, but he was the highlight of my night. On my way home, I could do nothing but worship my God for being so faithful and good to us. He is good.