Monday, November 23, 2015

Do You Like to Party?

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Kertson November Newsletter


We Like To Party
A Ministry Update from the Kertsons


“We like to party, we like, we like to party!” – Vengaboys

Why? Because God likes to party! God created heaven and earth for us to enjoy. God throws a party when any one person comes home into relationship with him. God is also preparing the greatest party we could ever imagine when heaven comes fully to earth!

So, we party too. This past month we had a country BBQ where we ate amazing food from Phil’s BBQ, had a marshmallow gun fight and square danced the night away. It was an amazing time with some 40 of our closest friends from San Diego State. What amazed me the most was that our party didn’t have alcohol, drugs, dirty dancing, and there was no making out. Still, the five or six non-Christians that came as our guests went away saying this was the best party they’d been to and they couldn’t wait to come back to Chi Alpha. Why? Because we were the welcoming arms of God for them, welcoming them home to a party we had thrown just for them! What more spiritual thing could we be doing (Luke 15:22ff)?! I heard specific comments from a number of new students that they had never felt so welcomed and a part of a community so quickly. Two of those girls, specifically come to mind because they did not come into the night really knowing about Jesus and have been to both our large group gatherings and small groups since and have begun to follow Jesus.

One girl in particular, Alex, came not because a friend invited her, but because she saw our table the week before out on the main walkway of campus. I told her what we were doing and invited her to the BBQ. She asked what the catch was and I just simply told her, “We want to know more people on our campus.” She said she did too and she’d be there. She rode with a car full of girls to the BBQ that night, I got the privilege of being her square dance partner, and we had a blast. She came to Chi Alpha that next Monday night and then Kendra got to meet with her during the week. It turns out Alex’s brother had died in the last month and even though she didn’t really believe in God, she found herself angry at God. Interestingly, that anger led her to wonder about who God really was. I guess if you’re angry at God, you might as well know who you’re angry at! So when she saw our table, she decided she’d check us out and find out who God really is. She’s still early in her journey, but she’s made a specific commitment to beginning to follow Jesus and make him the center of her life.

It started with a party and it ended with a party. It wasn’t the first and it won’t be the last. It’s what we do.

 
Keeping Up With the Kertsons
  • Kendra and I just celebrated our 12 year anniversary in San Clemente. It was a great weekend  to work on us, our marriage, and planning our next year of growth toward Jesus and each other.
  • Peyton and Amber both made the honor roll in the first trimester of school. They’ve been working really hard and Peyton also got the academic achievement award for third graders.
  • We got a cat! Her name is Pippa. She’s a good play friend for the girls, but she’s also on rat catcher duty. She and the dog are still getting used to each other.
Prayer/Partnership Points
  • We have a number of staff days coming up this next month that will be huge in keeping the amazing staff chemistry we’ve been building and looking toward what God has in our next semester of ministry. Pray for amazing ideas and clear vision.
  • Pray that those who have been coming to faith in Christ to continue in greater discipleship.
  • We have a number of events and funding requests for next semester going through university bureaucracy right now. Pray for favor.
  • Last month we asked if anyone had extra surfboards and instead we got money donated specifically to buy some! Thanks so much for your prayers and generosity!
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Jesus and You

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Kertson October Newsletter

Jesus and You
A Ministry Update from the Kertsons


September was a month full of highlights. 
 

September 11-13 we had our first annual fall retreat. There were 27 of us in a beautiful mansion near Big Bear Lake. We all gathered four times throughout the weekend in the large living room with huge windows overlooking the forest to look at scripture and worship together. While it felt like we were outside, the acoustics were amazing and it there was an amazing dynamic of an intimate, yet full sound as we pressed into God’s presence.  By far most of the highlights were Saturday night when we had an extended time of prayer and taught on the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. A number of people experienced the Spirit in powerful ways. One student who was on the edge of belief and questioned whether she had really ever experienced God asked Him to send someone to her with a prophetic word that was correct to prove he was real. God did not disappoint and since that trip we have seen amazing growth in her life. Another student said they were feeling overwhelming fear and anxiety, but after being prayed for felt “a weight” lift off of her and has also been experiencing awesome growth. These are just a few of the highlights of what God did and confirmed in the hearts of our students. Thank so much to those of you who gave extra to allow us to scholarship many of the students who went. 

Keeping Up With the Kertsons
  • Kendra started teaching a tap class with CYT San Diego and Peyton is in the class. She is loving her first tap dancing experience. Must run in the family!
  • Eden started preschool. Let’s just say it’s been good for everyone! Eden has loved going and getting some of her words out three mornings a week. Kendra has loved having more time to go on campus and meet with adults.
  • Amber auditioned for the nutcracker and was one of two girls in her class to get cast for two separate parts, a doll and a sugarbabe. Needless to say, she was excited.
  • Brandon’s Dad got very good news in his latest MRI. The contrast that had shown up in the first MRI had gotten small which confirmed for the doctor that the contrast is more than likely scar tissue that is healing, not cancer that still remains. They are going to finish six months more of chemotherapy to make sure no cancer is hiding anywhere.
Prayer/Partnership Points
· Pray for our student leaders as they step out in faith. Many of them are learning to juggle this extra responsibility and to really begin to disciple other people. It’s exciting, but scary for many of them.
· God continues to add to the number of people who want to the help us on staff. Pray for discernment as we add new people and for our team to continue to gel together as we come from so many different backgrounds and ministries.
· We are praying for some extra surfboards for one of our staff to begin to take more guys out surfing with him.
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