Travel Updates from Theresa
“How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. Blessed are those who dwell in your home ever singing your praise!” Psalm 84:1-4
This Psalm captures the longing for true home, the place where God dwells, the presence of Jesus. It is a place that exceeds any kind of joy and place of safety. It is a place that will satisfy every longing. Home is the theme of our camps this summer. Many of the young people we work with have very hard home situations. They long for a place where they are welcome, accepted, and loved.
It is our prayer that each person that comes to camp this summer will understand they can find this kind of home in having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. By joining God’s family, they will find an eternal home that satisfies their longing and far exceeds their imagination.
God has brought us 97 interns and around 1,000 people in short term teams to serve with us this summer, helping to make over 125 evangelistic camps happen. We are expecting around 2,500 unbelievers at camp by the end of the summer. We also have a new camp in Ukraine that will be our first camp in the war-torn Eastern region of Ukraine. This areas has a deep need for hope, life, and the gospel as the war continues to effect and drain their daily lives.
One report I received on how God is moving is of a student that was asking questions about the gospel. The believers in the small group kept answering his questions and basically talked about the whole gospel and Christian life. Another student had questions on the struggles he is dealing with in his life and asked to talk to one of the leaders during the camp hike. God is working!
But our summer camps are about so much more than just one week of camp. We long to see disciples who make disciples as part of the local church long after camp ends.
God would prepare the hearts of unbelievers to hear and respond to the Gospel with many young people making the decision to repent and believe in Jesus.
Believers would be bold with the Gospel. Expecting around 2,500 unbelievers at camps.
Many young people would make the decision to repent and believe in Jesus.
The believers at camp would love well, and end the summer closer to Jesus and more sure of all that he is and the mission he calls them to.
Local believers would be quick to follow up with students – inviting them to events and, most importantly, to disciple-making opportunities like small group Bible studies and youth group. Please pray that this follow up would be effective and fruitful and cause the local church to grow and prosper.
The local church will be built up as they reach out to their community and friends with the Gospel through these camps.
That for each of our interns ministry will flow out of being connected to God. That they plug into the local church ministry well and be a healthy support for those they serve. Pray for energy & enthusiasm as they engage with students and model Christ for them.
JV Spring Conference
Not long after that trip, I attended the JV Spring conference in Czech. As usual, this was a good time to have lots of conversations with our staff serving in 14 different countries. Dave Patty taught on “No Other Gods” and how easy it is to be susceptible to idolatry. I really had to examine my heart to identify and remove places where I have allowed myself to put my trust in something or someone other than God Himself. This was not easy, but the reward was great.
I am working out the details of when I will return for the JV Fall Training Conference. As you know, this conference doesn’t include families, but is focused on leadership training for our youth workers and leaders from all the 14 countries JV serves in.
Praise & Prayer
I praise the Lord for his traveling mercies and the opportunity to have some time at home this summer.
I am thankful for the many opportunities I had to serve and talk to so many.
I praise the Lord for the great doctor’s report my grandson, Hudson, received. Right now his kidney numbers are as if he just had a transplant! I thought you might enjoy seeing him going through some of his physical training in a video that was made in which he was part of. He is the 4 person and is wearing grey athletic shorts. Here is the link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/cwdqegp8cpn0i0s/Sequence%2033_2.mp4?dl=0
Please pray for my fall trip and whatever the Lord has for me during that time.
Your support means so much to me and this movement of God in the lives of many young people. Thank you for supporting and praying!
To learn more about our global partners with Josiah Venture, please click here.