Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Summer morning meditation

This morning during prayer meditation, it was just my fiance and me.  As we sat meditating, I think I experienced a bit of God's peace through the sounds of a lazy summer morning.  As an adult, I am frequently quite busy all morning running errands, meeting with college students, leading meditation or attending to other ministry duties or even just life needs.  Stopping completely, I could hear the sounds around me--the crickets chirping, the cars moving by, someone working nearby.  It all seemed so slow and casual as the warm morning sunlight slanted through the dojo windows.  I LOVE the feel of just stopping and listening--being there as life occurs around us--often more slowly than we realize (even if the people driving by are caught in their own busy internal worlds, the external world around is just waking up to the day).  It was a beautiful time to sit and not mentally meditate on anything--just to relax and let the day, the calm, and God's presence fill me up with relaxation and peace.  Thank God for a beautiful morning!  As a reminder, you or anyone in the area is welcome to join us for meditation any morning (  You may even join us from your home or other location--few things are quite like starting the day off well that way!  God bless!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Thanks for prayers (for those of you who were praying for us).  It sounds like we have the bid on the house; now we just have to get all of the financial things lined up, inspections done, and all of the other good stuff that goes with buying a house.  Thank you very much for your prayers!  Also, please contact me if you know of a temp job for a college-aged student who needs $50 in a timely manner.  The student is a hard worker and is willing to put down some sweat for it.  Thanks!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Prayer Meditations

Tonight during Godly Warriors Class at the dojo (, we meditated early church style; as I sat and listened to the summer evening sounds around me, I heard summer again for the first time in a long time.  I have been quite busy this summer with life changes, ministry, and ministry work--extremely busy.  It has been excellent--we have served MANY people and had a LOT of fun; as we were meditating, people were starting to arrive for Unite Game Night (, and I could hear them chatting about all types of things.  It was obvious that if I was not meditating on the mat that I could be taking care of a million little things that needed taken care of--that's kind of my 'work mode'.  However, on the mat, I had the freedom to just listen to it happening around me--and to listen to the sounds outside and the slow lazy summer evening.  Everything just kind of...  slowed down.  It was indescribably nice.  It helped me enjoy Game Night from a much more chill perspective--that of an outside observer.  As I listened, I developed a new appreciation for the evening and for how much it serves people.  I also was able to relax a ton and appreciate having nothing that I had to do.  I just sat in God's presence in a room of people with summer happening around me, and I relaxed--much needed!

I also realized that sometimes I have to do less and be more.  It takes time to say no to the million little things that all need done, but when I do say 'no' to some, I can relax and refill as I really should.  That meditation carried deeply into my evening--even into now (1:02 a.m. at Game Night).  I am so much more relaxed--enjoying things as they progress.  Though I may have gotten a few less little things done, I have BEEN much more to the people I have interacted with--more chill, more personable, more able to listen.  Thank God for the times to slow down and to take that peace with us in our days!  God bless!  :)

Also, to those who want to see a video of Unite Game Night as it now looks (including some of the dancing and games on the projector), check out the video at  --it's going well; thanks for your continued prayers!!!  :D

Friday, June 14, 2013

Prayer Request

Hello everyone!
   I want to request prayer today if you get a chance; we just visited a house a couple of days ago that is the first one that we REALLY liked.  It had a good feel to it, it would be EXCELLENT for ministry use (we could EASILY have Bible studies there and could later rent out the basement to a college student), and Tella and I immediately had a good feeling about it.  To be frank, when we've looked at housing options for once we are married in August, this is the only one that has stuck out as good, and after visiting a bank, we can definitely make the payments on it (it is less than the cost of renting a two-bedroom apartment in Hays).  We discussed it heavily, prayed, and called confirming that we wanted to make an offer on it one hour after visiting it.  Apparently a neighbor saw us looking at it and made an offer before us.  The seller asked if we would counter-offer that minute, so we did make a slightly higher counter-offer; now it's up in the air.  If God wants this place to work out, it will; if He's ok either way, we want this place--it would fit our ministry and personal needs very well at a perfect price.  If it isn't supposed to work out for some reason we don't know, then it's better that it not work out.  That said, we both have a good feel about it, and I think it's in the middle option.  I think God has given us an excellent opportunity if we are willing to fight for it a bit.  I COULD be wrong, though--it could be the first or third option.  As such, I would request prayer for clarity and for it to work out how God wants it (either first or third option) OR, if He is cool wherever we live in Hays so long as we do ministry with our lives, then we request prayers that it work out as we would want this place for ministry.  Please pray with us, and we'll let you know what happens!

Saturday, June 8, 2013


It's funny how God sometimes seems to answer short prayers when we are under heavy duress and/or stress in life; it's also funny how sometimes it is so difficult to just think to pray to Him in those times when it is such an obvious thing to do!  Thank God for reminding me of my need to pray to Him and walk with Him, and thank Him beyond words for walking with me.

Unite Newlsetter May 2013

The start of summer has definitely been a time to trust God.  Everything changes this time of year—students whom we’ve worked with for years graduate and move away, while new students move in early for the school year, we shift gears and locations for our small groups and prepare for summer mission trips and big events in August, and we have quite a few special events in both the Unite ministry and in our dojo outreach.  Additionally, this summer I am getting married in August, so my fiancĂ© and I are going through marriage counseling, planning a wedding, and trying to figure out where to live when August rolls around!  It is a time when finances dip super low, surge high, and then cycle again; it is a time when basic things (such as where I will live in August) come into uncertainty, and it is a time of great potential for outreach ministry!

One such exciting potential is that the United Methodist Student Center, where we usually host our Friday Night Unite Game Night ministry, is closed this summer for renovations.  (Unite Game Night is an alternative to the bars and a chance to experience community—it is a game night with board games, tabletop games, video games, card games, a non-profit coffeehouse serving coffee drinks, and more).  As such, we have had to find an alternate location for it—at least for this summer. 

At the same time, I had begun selling some board and card game merchandise at the dojo (since many who practice Aikido go to the game nights and want to purchase board and card games).  It was just an experiment to see if I could earn a little extra money for the ministry without putting much time or effort into it (since I already had the appropriate zoning and licenses to sell things at the dojo), but it quickly showed me that it was opening a whole new venue for outreach ministry.  By just spending literally a couple extra hours each week, I was meeting a variety of junior high and high school students who play card games, as well as some people from Judge’s Bar and other venues who also play games.  They come in and buy products after Aikido classes and chat—on several occasions we have talked about very real life issues, and we are starting to experience a new community there.  It became clear to me that this was an outreach ministry that I hadn’t even been looking for, and to my excitement it literally only cost me a couple extra hours of my week to accomplish it—AND to open it up for others to come in and use for ministry!  As such, I named the other half of our dojo rented space ‘The Gamers Guild’, and I made it an official part of our contract.

As it so happened, this was all right before we found out that Unite Game Night had no home for the summer.  Well, you can quickly see how a place selling board and card games that is right near college sector (200 E 8th Street in Hays, KS) was an EXCELLENT fit for Unite Game Night for the summer!  As such, amid a lot of hustle and bustle and work, we have set up Unite Game Night and Common Grounds Coffee House at The Gamers Guild to run every Friday night for the summer (a photo of our first Unite Game Night at the Gamers Guild is below).  So far, it seems to be going well—my baristas and I (and others) have A TON of ideas about how to use the much

larger space to make Game Night even better, and I am super excited to see what all God may do with it and through it!  It also opens up a number of other outreach ministry potentials that have temporarily been dormant—including a few projects we had considered in the community at large with some of the local churches, although I don’t plan to look into those too much for the immediate future; right now keeping improving what we have happening and prepping for a summer of transition (including our exciting upcoming mission trip and getting married afterwards in August) is more than a full enough plate!  Nonetheless, even thinking about some of the new opportunities The Gamers Guild opens up while I type this has me excited to see what may be on the horizon!

As I close the newsletter for this month, I want to thank you for your continued prayers for me and for the ministry.  I am sincerely convinced that God does answer such prayers, and that He and such prayers are BEYOND critical for ministry to happen as it should.  PLEASE keep praying for us—it really makes the difference out here!  I also want to report that my monthly financial support has slightly increased—by about $150!  I am hopeful that this is the start of things to come, and I am thankful that this is a direct answer to prayer.  I am very grateful to those who financially assist in the ministry work here, for those who pray with us, and for those who work directly with us in the field!  I am also SINCERELY grateful to God, who provides the basic needs for those who seek first His Kingdom.  May He help me—and all of us—seek first His Kingdom, for the sakes of others and for our own sakes, too!

Prayer Requests

Please pray that more people join us on the Unite Mission Trip this year; we have several interested, and more who have requested applications.  At this time, we don’t know how many are going, but I believe that we need more people to join us to be an effective group.  Please keep the trip in your prayers!

Please pray for Unite Game Night and the opportunities there.  May more volunteers join us to assist in it, and may we have good conversations and may the Kingdom advance there!

Please pray that my personal missionary support continues to rise; it greatly enables ministry.

Please pray that God help the small group communities come back together for the summer and grow in strength.  May we have even more small groups next year.

Please pray that all of us in the field listen to and follow the Holy Spirit as we seek to serve.

Please pray for the Kingdom work in general and seek to follow God in your own lives (in the places and ways that you can love people).  The harvest is plentiful, but the workers ARE few; may the Lord of the Harvest send more workers!  Thank you again for your prayers!