Last week was the 10-year anniversary of Sarah and I moving to Arizona. We’ve been Arizonians for 10 years now! The time has flown by.
We are in Phoenix this week and visited the church that we helped plant 10 years ago and MY how things have changed. The leadership is different, the name is different, the building is different, yet we see the impact of the lives we invested in all those years ago. We came away reflecting on the fact that everything we enjoy in this life was paid for by the blood, sweat, and tears of others, most of whom we will never know their names. Thankfully, we know the Name of the One who paid his blood, sweat, and tears for the purchase of our salvation! I pray that your celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is continuing, now that we are over a week away from Easter Sunday.
March saw three incredible student events back-to-back.
We end every discipleship unity on integrity with a private and intimate “confession chapel.” This year 11 of the 14 students present shared their struggle and/or sins, some with tears and most with great humility and transparency. After each person he or she was surrounded by others and prayed for; chapel lasted almost three hours! This is such a beautiful expression of James 5:16 and Galatians 6:1-2, and is one of the truest tests that the IBC community is full of Christlike grace and truth (John 1:14).
The next day was Serve Day and students launched out into the community to clean up streets, pack boxes at a food bank, help at a home for battered women, and assist our neighbors. It was also Good Friday, and we began and ended the day with a celebration of Christ’s crucifixion.
The day after THAT the students left for their annual Ministry Immersion Trip. This year, for the first time in eight years, the trip was exclusively on the Navajo reservation. The five staff and fifteen students served and ministered powerfully with two churches in the Chinle area; everyone came back transformed from the experience and the local leaders were greatly encouraged.
Praise the Lord with me for all the ways the Lord is changing the students’ lives and using them to serve others!
I have one prayer request to share with you this month, but it is an important one: Pray for the growth of the student body. Just two years ago our full-time enrollment had the campus packed at around 30; now it is down to just 17. The enemy is increasingly effective at talking prospective students out of coming and existing students out of staying. Pray with us for students that are called and committed to being leaders for their own people.
Thanks for standing with us in prayer and financial support! We are incredibly grateful to have you a part of the team,
Jason and family