Saturday, December 17, 2011

Home Sweet Home

I woke up this morning expecting to see another drab, and weary December morning when I looked out the kitchen windows, was taken aback and saw this...

After jumping up and down in a fit of joy I realized that not everybody gets excited about the first real snowfall...especially dad, who already had the driveway shoveled and cars cleaned off by 9 am. 

Maybe we'll have a white Christmas after all? 

Here's to hoping! 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Like Music to My Ears...

An exciting first Bison game with a great group!
Not only did I get to witness the Bison beat the Lehigh Mountain Hawks this past Saturday but on Sunday I attended Handel's Messiah, performed by some extremely talented musicians and choir students at NDSU. I've never really gone to this kind of thing before, but I can attest to the fact that it might be one of my new favorites, which is kind of funny, because just the night before a group of us girls were talking about what our "dream dates" would be (yeah yeah, I know, dating fast, but, whatever!) and seeing an orchestra and choir perform did not cross my mind in the slightest. However, after broadening my horizons on Sunday I would certainly be excited to go and do this again.

Anywho, while enjoying the sweet sounds of Kuhnau's Magnificat and Handel's Messiah as they caressed my eardrums, I got to thinking... 

What does the Bison winning a football game have to do with Handel's Messiah? Does it really matter? Hmmm...

Something that has really blown me away for roughly the last year and a half (and some of you may know this) is the interdependence (definition: being mutually reliant on each other) of not only our families, not only Christians, not only our society, but the entire world that we live in! Seriously, sometimes when I go to different sporting events, Mass, the grocery store or even just get into conversations that I understand nothing about (this usually includes with engineers, mathematicians, philosophers and musicians) I just have to sit back and ponder the incredible body of Christ, and how we all do have a role in it. There is not one person on this earth who does not have an important role (I apologize for the double negative), whether they believe in the saving power of Jesus Christ or have no faith in God whatsoever, each person plays a vital role.

Holy smokes!! And that double exclaimed statement is not an over-exaggeration--just think about it: We all have oodles of different talents, specialties and things that make us "tick," and for what reason? I instantly think of  1Corinthians 12:14-26, talking about being different parts of the body, yet how all are necessary. I thought of all the different fans at the Bison game on Saturday, and then the seemingly different crowd at the orchestral performance on Sunday and all of the participants. Not only the players and coaches in Saturday's game or the performers and conductor in Sunday's concert were what made those shows spectacular--there were tons of other people on the sidelines, the Gold Star Marching Band, people in the score booths, techies taking care of lights and sound, etc. All of these people were necessary in order for the spectators to enjoy what they saw, not a person was left out and it's just really neat.

NDSU FOCUS team says you should love Jesus. Convincing?
In essence, the transition from being amongst tons of fans to an older--and I'd dare say more sophisticated--crowd on the next day was an awesome experience and semi rocked my world.

Also, in other great news our goal at NDSU for the end of this school year is to have 89 students in discipleship. The semester technically isn't over yet, but certainly on its last legs, and the student missionaries are still sharing the Gospel and asking people into discipleship as they take their final exams! There are already 16 new student missionaries in discipleship this semester alone, making our 89 goal extremely attainable before next semester even begins! Holy spiritual multiplication!

Talk about the harvest being abundant (Luke 10:2)... man alive.

Only a few days left until I hit the road for Wisco! Ma and Pa Kaufman, here I come!

Kelsey Marie

Friday, December 9, 2011

Student Testimony

One of the wonderful women in my discipleship chain, Britni, has been growing so much this semester, and now the fruits are truly shining through. I asked her to write up a little testimony of her recent exciting news: a young woman in her Bible study is now in discipleship! It's really exciting because as missionaries we realized that the mission of FOCUS is:

"To know Christ Jesus and to fulfill the Great Commission by first living and then communicating the fullness of faith within the Family of God, the Church"

....nowhere in there does it say that the mission of FOCUS is to lead as many Bible studies as possible. Rather, we genuinely try to win people to Jesus Christ, build them up in effective discipleships and then send them out to do the same with others. Britni is starting to really grasp this concept and here's a brief testimony that she shared with me:

This is my first semester leading a bible study and from the start I had a steady, solid group of girls coming. Immediately, I began to think "Wow, Jesus and I are going to make a bunch of really great disciples out of this group!" As the semester continued, no girl stood out to me. No one was laid on my heart during prayer for that specific thing but I continued to pray about it. As the semester began to wind down, I almost started to panic wondering what was going to happen with these girls. I felt like I had failed them and Jesus because that is the "goal" is to make disciples of all nations and I could not do it. Dang... Finally, there were a couple girls I had in mind but none of them were quite there yet. So I continued to pray and be patient. I knew that prayer was the only thing that could ease my restless mind. Then, as I was ready to talk to a couple girls after our last bible study of the semester, none of them were there...weird. I was bummed at the beginning but it just opened up the door for the beautiful Bobbi Jo. This young woman came to study almost every week and was always very quiet but I knew she took everything to heart. Because these other girls were NOT there it opened up the floor and my eyes to Bobbi. She didn't say a lot but what she did say I took to heart. I knew she was the answer to my prayers!

After bible study, I got home and texted her asking if we could talk, she said she would love to and she actually needed to talk to me too. Cool! We went to lunch, I asked Bobbi Jo into discipleship and she said yes! It was the most beautiful thing! I almost cried (because I was so happy and excited!) and then she really just blew me away. Bobbi proceeded to tell me that she started meeting with a girl in her dorm to pray together every night. HOW GREAT! She also told me that recently she had been praying for guidance so she was excited that I wanted to do absolutely anything for her to help her get to know the person of Jesus Christ even better. Essentially, we answered each other's prayers. 

Now that my friends, that is what spiritual multiplication looks like: Not only to make disciples of all nations, but to raise up disciples that raise up disciples. And that is why I'm a FOCUS missionary!!

Oh, and in other great news: four new girls said yes to discipleship with Jesus and I this coming semester, the two that I was working with will be "launched" and/or leaving Fargo and I think that what's in store for NDSU FOCUS will look much differently than it ever has! I'll keep you posted!

Also, I can already taste the Spotted Cow... Wisco here I come!! Less than one week away and I'm SO EXCITED to watch the Rose Bowl on the 'rents' HD big screen! Wooop! Let's go RED!