FaithStudents

FaithStudents 4.3

“Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him.’ John 3:2 esv

What we know is vitally important
‘I can agree with you on some things, but not on everything.’

Don’t you think that is the sentiment of many people today, the fact that we can agree on a lot of things, but it is the things we don’t agree on that divide and trouble us. I love a quote from Mark Twain,

‘It is not the verses of the Bible that I don’t understand that give me troubles, but the verses that I do understand that trouble me.’

In John 3 we have a respected Pharisee named Nicodemus who confesses in front of Jesus and his disciples that the Pharisee’s know that he is a teacher from God. nicodemus is admitting a secret respect they have for Jesus. However, how Jesus uses the authority He possesses is not in agreement with their assumptions, so they become His problem.

it is the things we know and suppress that will work against us. It is the truth we cannot suppress. It is the knowledge of Him that sanctifies and when we allow Him to take over we see the truth of the signs talked about by Nicodemus in John 3. So as a parent the question becomes, how do I strip away the distractions that my students face so that they can see the power of the cross and resurrection?

Action Points

I encourage you to read John 3:1-21. We are talking about it at this weeks WNL. I am asking the students if they are missing or shutting their eyes to the truth that is right in front of them. If you read this exchange or are aware of this story you will remember the interaction brings Jesus to a point of asking, ‘How do you not get this?’

We can look at this a little harsh, but let’s be honest; He can (and should) ask us all this probably a lot in our lives. So the point is to raise our eyes from looking down at the next step and the next step and seeing if our eyes are on the horizon.  if so, then we will see what he shows us.

Are your students just looking down at their feet and just aware of their next steps? Who is supposed to teach your students to keep their eyes on Him?

You? Me? Random Person?

We parent and love with intention and so I encourage you to help your students pick up their eyes and ask every once in a while, ‘How do you not get this?’

I am asking you a question constantly this year:
Who is God putting in your life to Love Sacrificially?

If you have questions please let me know.scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our bi-weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?   

Scott Owens

Links

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 4.2

“And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.’ Psalm 9:10 esv

So It Begins…

Officially everyone has started school by now unless we have some homeschool families out there that are waiting for the snow to fly. Since school has started let me ask you, what do you hope? What is your desire for your students? What is your dream for them spiritually?

This year we are going through the book of John and we are looking at the book through the eyes of the message that Jesus gives us, ‘no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit.’ (Jn 3:5 nlt) This is the mission that God gave to His Son to share with us and now it is the message that we are to share to every person. So I ask again, what is the hope you have for your students (spiritually) this year?

I went to a small bible college outside of Knoxville and I went with very little expectation of how I would grow in the Lord that first year. Going into my second year I had a desire, a hope, maybe even a direction that I wanted to head and grow towards. It was a greater year for me. There was more fruit and there was more to be in awe. It was not because more happened or I was challenged in a greater way, but simply because my eyes were open for it.

Think about the moments in your life that are memorable, are they because something dramatic happened to get your attention or was your attention already focused and your purpose was ready. I would guess about 80% of the memorable events are planned (vacation, weddings, kids born, a move or birthdays). However, there are some times that pop up unexpectantly.  so what is the hope you have for your students this year?

Is it possible to steer them into what God is doing for them and focus them on how He is directing them closer and closer to Him… absolutely! You are their parent and you are THE MAIN SPIRITUAL INFLUENCER IN YOUR STUDENTS LIFE. So with that great responsiblity, dream, hope and help for their focus to be alert.

Action Points

We have two weekly meetings that your students can take part in:

WNL (Wednesday Night Live) every Wednesday starting at 6:46-8:48 at the East building. Worship, Prayer, Small Groups, Games, Message and other stuff to get your students focused on family, kingdom and mission. All students 7th-12th invited. We will be outside if the weather is nice and inside if the weather is not.

DIG (Sunday Morning) is during the second service message. Roughly it is about 10:40-11:15 in Room 110 of the church next to the nursery. We are going through a series called Vantage and all students are invited.

I am getting in the habit of asking you a question weekly this year:
So a question for you, WHO is God putting in your life to Love Sacrificially?

If you have any questions please let me know. Thanks.scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our bi-weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?   

Scott Owens

Links

Fall Fling Oct 30-Nov 1 | Watch for details in next week’s newsletter.

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 4.1

“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me.’ John 5:39 esv

Outside, Inside and Online

‘it is they that bear witness about me’…They that testify about me to others know me! Therefore if you do not testify to others about Him you don’t know Him! 

This year our focus is Mission and getting the students to be equipped and encouraged to share their faith and challenged to listen to who God has put in their life. How well do we model that? How well do we reach out in our lives to those around us?

Outside

We will be starting WNL outside this fall. We will be in the field behind the east building and 99% of the night will be back there so that if students don’t want to wear masks they don’t have to and we have more freedom in the course of the night with small groups. We will encourage students to keep their distance. We will still have small groups, worship, games and a campfire every night. We will stay outside as along as we can (weather dependent), if it rains or it starts to get too cold we will head inside.  we will connect with you on the plans as we move through the fall. (email, facebook, Instagram and Text).

Inside

When the temp gets too cold or it rains we will go inside and be in the North Hall of East Building. Chairs will be spread out, Alongsiders will be wearing masks and students will be encouraged to wear masks. People on stage are not required to wear masks and we will keep doing worship, games, announcements and a message. The hard part is doing small groups, so some groups may be going over to the main church during small groups time. When the mask mandate is dropped we will not be requiring masks to be worn by Alongsiders (it will be a matter of choice) or asking students to wear their masks.

Online

For those students that are not able to join us on Wednesday nights we will be posting WNL on Facebook Live. Students can join every Wednesday as we will put the worship and message online. We will try and make a consistent time every week so that you can log on at the same time and take part of the night without being there. Outside or Inside we will start to do this Wed, Sept 9th and will continue during the fall and assess by MEA Break and again at Christmas.

Action Points

So how are your students taking part? How are they stepping into this ministry and being encouraged to share what God is doing in and through them? We want students to know Him with a faith that is active and loving in this time. So here is what you can do:

I would like you to get in the habit of asking your student a question constantly this year: 

Who is God putting in your life to Love Sacrificially?

Thank you for taking on this challenge. If you have any questions please let me know. Thanks.

scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?   

Scott Owens 

Links

Be sure and look at our calendar on the FaithStudents website page

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3:39

“And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness,’ Acts 4:29 esv

WNL this Fall and beyond

Have you ever wondered if the early church had a plan. Did the disciples know what they were doing? I believe if you are a planner you have a tendency to say no, but if you are a ‘wing-it’ you have a tendency to say yes. Like most things in life the answer falls in the middle and either way it does not matter. but when it comes to having a plan for our own lives it does feel like it matters. 

We just wrapped up our Alongsider Planning meeting for the year and it gives me great hope for what will happen this year. I don’t have faith in what we have planned, but I have faith in where God will take it. Cause right now we don’t have much direction for what next year and next month look like. However, in the midst of uncertainty we rely that much more on Him. So this year we have a MISSION. 

This year we want to see students on mission to share the gospel with others. For some students that is scary and for some it is challenging but doable, however we want for our students to be desiring to share what this Kingdom of God is like and increase the Family of God. So I need your help, I am asking that you challenge your student to not get focused on getting themselves right with God, but instead encouraging them to find their identity in Christ through how passionately they share the hope we have. 

I have heard students share that they need to get ‘right with the Lord first’ and honestly I have heard adults say that (i have said that at times too). However, the reality is that you don’t get ‘right with the Lord’ before you are able to serve. He makes you ‘right with him’ while you focus not on yourself. For Examples look at the Bible: Noah, Moses, the Disciples, David, Solomon, Josiah, Timothy…

Action Points

So here comes the ask: Here is what I am going to ask you to do: Are you ready for it:

I would like you to get in the habit of asking your student a question constantly this year: 

Who is God putting in your life to Love sacrificially?

All I desire for you to do is constantly engage your students in asking them consistently this question. In getting this mindset into their vision; that we were made to love others, to care for others, and to share with others. Your students have people in their life that only they can reach and we want to encourage, equip and prepare them to do just that. 

Thank you for taking on this challenge. If you have any questions please let me know. Thanks.

scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?   

Scott Owens 

LINKS


EVENTS

Amazing Race:  Join us for our annual end of summer event.  Wednesday Aug 19th.  Meet and end at Austin High School.  6-9pm. Bring your best sleuthing skills and fast feet.

Prayer and Praise Night: Kick off our year with praise and worship to our Lord.  Sept 2nd 7pm at East Building

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3.38 

We do what we can 

Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours be done.” These amazing words from Jesus give us insight into the relationship between the Father and the Son.  We know that Jesus was willing and ready to die for us on the cross, to repair the relationship that we destroyed, but you also have the Son look for another way. Not in defiance or rebellion, but in just asking.  

Jesus asks the Father, IF, there is another way please do that. However, if there is not let your will be done. Jesus states His preference and then surrenders to the will of the Father.  

State your preference and then surrender! 

What if that becomes the way we talk to God and the way we relate to others. State your preference and then surrender. There are many ways I would like state my preference to God and then I would like him to do exactly what I want, but then I am not living in a state of surrender to His will. I know His will is better than mine, his vision is better than mine and his plans are better than mine. 

So with so much out of our control I would encourage you to take some moments this week to state your preference to God (about masks, schools opening, other peoples opinions, racial injustice, public places, health concerns, sick relatives) and then SURRENDER!  

Action Points 

With the new order from Gov. Walz we are now going to be meeting exclusively at East Building until further notice. Meeting at other places is significantly difficult to do. we will meet every Wednesday at East, but it will be outside in the grassy area. students are encouraged to wear masks if they want and also not if they desire. We will try to stay outside as much as possible since it just gives a little more freedom for all.  

Our hope is to be outside, but on the nights where weather is an issue, we will be inside East building. Alongsiders will have masks on and students are encouraged to wear masks, but are not required (per Walz Order). our goal is to minister to your students as best we can during this time. We are still working on a plan for the fall, but we are also waiting for Gov. Walz to give his instructions on Thursday.  

We continue to plan safe activities where we can meet and serve and have fun.  The Amazing Race is coming up on Wed, Aug 19th at 7pm. This has become our end of summer event and it’s a hit with the kids. Prayer and Praise is Sept 2nd and if all goes as planned WNL will kick off Sept 9th.  It’s an ever-changing time.  Your prayers are welcomed. 

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.  

scott@faithchurchaustiin.orgfacebook.com/FaithChurchStudentsinstagram.com/fcstudentmin/ 

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and  filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?    

Scott Owens 

 

UPCOMING EVENTS
Graduation Banquet: Aug 2nd
Amazing Race: August 19th
Prayer and Praise: Sept 2nd
WNL Kickoff Cookout: Sept 9th

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3.37

Due Diligence

In this newsletter article I am going to be very honest and clear with you about our plans. I am fully aware that some of you may agree and disagree with me, but I think being honest and forthcoming is more important than stringing you along to our intentions and hopes in the fall.

Just last night I got together with my Alongsiders and thanked them for a great year and a wonderful year of ministry. It was a discouraging end to the year, but that doesn’t change the fact that God worked through what was done and we continue to minister in any way we can. My next meeting with our Alongsider Team is in the middle of August when we talk about our fall plans.

At that meeting we will have three options, much like schools are doing…

  • The ‘normal plan’ – like what regular WNL looks like
  • Plan B – Hybrid WNL with smaller groups
  • Online Version – The Social Distance

In the past when school has been cancelled for weather or BREAKS, we do not have WNL. If school starts up in the fall as normal then it is almost certainly that we will do the normal plan. However, if school does go to a hybrid model of online and in person or just all ONLINE, I am struggling to do the Plan B or the Online Version, once again I am being honest with you all.

I saw the distraught students had during our zoom meetings and the struggles many of them had with

little to no social interaction. many of our students came back when we started up with a need for community and that does affect me. I have not made a firm decision yet and the Alongsiders are a huge part of this decision. None of us can do WNL alone so we need to make this decision together.

However, I want you parents to know where I am leaning. Since we have meet this summer and we have not seen a COVID spike in our group and since the number of deaths are drastically DOWN, I am inclined to meet. This doesn’t mean I know what the year looks like or that we aren’t looking at what we would need to do should the situation change, but I am inclined to say ‘let’s meet’. However, leaders need to be discerning and prayerful and I am asking for your prayers. We need your thoughts and hopes for what we are seeing in our world and in our community.

We want to minister to every student and so how do we do that in EVERY SITUATION. Please be in prayer for our Alongsiders meeting in Mid-August. Thank you for praying for us and for this ministry. Thank you for supporting us and for discipling your own student with passion.

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.

scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students? 

Scott Owens

 

UPCOMING EVENTS
Summer WNL: July 22nd @ East, July 29th @ East, August 5th TBD
Graduation Banquet: August 2nd @ East  6-8pm
Amazing Race: August 19th Downtown Austin 6pm

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3:35

July shall come…

We are back this Wednesday with a bang. We are having Summer WNL at EAST this coming Wednesday (the 1st) at 7pm.  Our plan is to have Summer WNL until mid-August. We would love to have your students join us if you feel like it is something they need and it would help them.

Two things I want to you to know about our summer plans…

  • SUMMER WNL – obviously. We meet at East, around town at homes or at parks and this is a great chance for worship and community with our students. We would love to have your student come.  7-9pm
  • CLEAN-UP AUSTIN PARKS – is a chance we have to help out our town. Austin is in need of people to help cleanup and maintain parks and flower beds around town that normally is done by full-time and part-time staff. We now have a chance to fill a need. We will be doing this on Wednesday’s during the remainder of the summer. Part of our tasks will be to maintain flower beds and playgrounds by weeding, picking up garbage, etc.  This Wednesday we will work on the area at the municipal pool. If your student can join us please have them message me at (218) 251-1990 or scott@faithchurchaustin.org  What a great opportunity for us to serve our community and gather safely as a group.

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.scott@faithchurchaustiin.orgfacebook.com/FaithChurchStudentsinstagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?  
Scott Owens

EVENTS:

July 1st: Park and Flower Clean up.  Contact Scott for information
July 1st: WNL at East  7-9pm

July 15th: Virtual Challenge Event  Join us at East on July 15th for a virtual event.  Great speakers, music, fellowship.  Live Stream begins at 7pm but we will have more going on before.  Watch for details.

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3.34

I never thought I would ever have to make up a guidelines sheet!

Student ministry does not have a lot of guidelines, we have a lot of goals and desires. We don’t have a ton of guidelines because guidelines tend to limit and student ministry is not the place where you want to limit people to be part of something.

However, we are in this season of life and as we meet together and covid cases grow in the southwest area of Minnesota we must give some guidelines to what FaithStudent ministry events (SummerWNL and others) will look like.  Please look these over and adhere to them as best you can before your student comes to our next SummerWNL or other event.

Our Summer2020 Guidelines:

  • If your student is sick with symptoms like: fever or chills, cough, difficulty breathing, muscle aches, headache, sore throat, runny nose and diarrhea don’t come. You either have CoVid19 or you are recovering from death by salsa.
  • If anyone in your home is sick with something that could be covid19 they should get some sleep.
  • We will attempt to wash our hands and encourage students to wash their hands as well, especially after the s’mores roast because it is impossible to have clean hands after that.
  • We will have hand sanitizer at all of our future events. However, Scott forgot the last two weeks and he will try and remember. Chance of success 75%!
  • We encourage you to cover your cough, also cover your midriff, toes if you have ugly toes and don’t wear overly revealing clothing. Remember to cover up!!
  • Face Coverings are optional, but not required at our Summer Events. We will not have any available because Scott is just trying to remember hand sanitizer, but to the person that brings the coolest face covering you get a high five.
  • High Fives are banned.
  • Scott will occasionally yell, “Social Distancing Fools!” At that time the floor isn’t lava, but people are lava…run away.
  • Remember social distancing is six feet apart, unless you want to hug a person, but make sure it is consensual and only for 2 seconds or less because no one likes an awkward hug.

I am obviously having fun with this, but you all know the CDC guidelines and I hope you follow them when you or your family is sick. We want our students to meet together and have that time of social interaction and exchange faith discussions because it is needed. However, we don’t want our group or your family sick.

However, if you look at the number of mental issues, struggles and abuse cases nationally it is going up and we know that social contact with others is vital for our joy. That is why we are meeting, but we want you to feel the freedom to meet or to keep your distance.

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.

scott@faithchurchaustin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students? 

Scott Owens

 

LINKS

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3.33

Where do we go from here?

I am writing this on a Monday morning conflicted with the world around me. It is the same feeling that I think many of you are feeling and wondering how you are dealing with the actions going on in the world.

I find myself looking for answers in my own mind and in my own spirit, but finding them short of hope. In moments of desperation I am holding on to verses like this one. ‘The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.’ Ps 34:18

Because our society and our state and our nation is very brokenhearted. There is so much going wrong and yet we also see hope and community in how our neighborhoods and their members respond in a beautiful way. In moments of silence I ask questions like ‘Lord, what do you want of me?’ Or ‘Lord, how do I respond?’

My hope with this newsletter is to give you hope if you have felt ‘brokenhearted’ and ‘crushed in spirit’. We have a very diverse group of students and the concerns and worries that attempt to take us over are many, but we have a father in heaven that desires for our struggles to not fall empty. We find Him and His loving arms no matter our background, wealth, color, gender or age.

The Action Step…

We have met the last two Wednesday nights and we attempted to break up the groups into groups of 10 or less. Last week we all met together.  we had a great time. I have been communicating with authorities about our meetings as to not draw unwanted attention, but we do want to meet to encourage and bring us together as a family of believers.

Having said that our family needs to come together in love to lift up our nation, state and community. It is not just for the sake of students that need human interaction, but also to be a family that prays for our nation and looks to bless others. What that looks like…I don’t know but I encourage your students to join us.

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.

scott@faithchurchaustiin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our weekly emails will be focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students? 

Scott Owens

LINKS

SUMMER CALENDAR

Summer2020

FaithStudents

FaithStudents 3.32

What are FaithStudents intentions now that the Stay At Home Order was lifted?

I want to be clear about what the next couple of months will look like since the Stay At Home Order has been lifted. This graph you may recognize from Gov. Walz briefings:

Now that we can meet in groups of 10 or less we will begin small groups this Wednesday night. As the limits move we will adjust with them.

In the past we have taken off the month of June and started back up after the 4th of July. With us not being together for the last couple of months we will count that as time off and will meet from May-August when we can.

We will start to meet in small groups at different homes around Austin this week. It is our hope that we can get students into smaller and similar groups to meet and share about life, play some games, take part in discussion and just give students the chance to socialize.

No Pressure
Id like to be VERY clear that there is no pressure or requirement for you student to participate. You may feel comfortable meeting at this time and that is great. I understand if you dont want to send your students and you have a choice to not allow your student to come and take part. It is never my intention to force or pressure you or your student to attend anything that they dont want to. It goes the same with any Alongsider or volunteer for them not to attend if they dont want to.

However, I believe that you would also agree with me that if many others want to meet together and if we can safely in small groups then we should make every effort to come together.

The Action Step
We will be sending out (facebook, instagram, text and email) where your student can meet and how long the meeting will last. We will not be providing rides as a ministry, but if you want to coordinate them yourself feel free.

If you have any questions and/or response to our intentions please call me, message me or plan a visit and we can talk about it.

scott@faithchurchaustin.org, facebook.com/FaithChurchStudents, instagram.com/fcstudentmin/

Our emails will be bi-weekly through the summer and are focused on encouraging you parents with resources and filling you all up to disciple your students. How can I pray for you or your students?

Scott Owens

LINKS

WNL.Small Groups – This Wednesday at 6:30pm we meet at homes. Its an hour and a half with games, worship, prayer, a message and small groups focused on how to handle and care for others.

Faith From Home
Here are some options to do as a family. Check them out.

RightNow Media This resource has many studies from book studies to topical that are great to take your family through. Email if you need a code.

I Am Second This is a great testimony website for to use with your students. All of them is a person giving their testimony and pointing to Christ. Length: 3-7 minutes.

Bible Project Huge category of biblical and theme videos that are done really well and you can go over the books of the Bible or a specific topic.