Thursday, March 16, 2023

An Update and Important Request for You!

Here's the Important Request

On February 21st, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it intends to remove regulations that explicitly protect religious student organizations like FOCUS. These regulations say that public universities and colleges cannot deny us the rights and privileges afforded to other student groups because of our beliefs, practices, policies, speech, membership standards, or leadership standards. 

The public has until March 24th to comment on the proposal, and we are asking everyone in our network to do so - staff, students, donors, and partner churches. We have set up a webpage to explain the situation further and make it as easy as possible to comment. Check it out at

This could have real consequences for our ministry, so please rally with us and share with others who care about protecting religious groups on university campuses across the country.

Ministry Update

February and the first half of March have been great so far! With the crazy weather we have already had this semester we already canceled two TNFs - did y'all have super intense thunderstorms a couple weeks ago? But ministry is still moving and things are going well! My core (small group) is thriving and building some real friendships. 

We decorated cookies for Valentine's Day!

I've successfully helped influence Emily to love plants!

As a way to meet people on campus, we invited them to make Valentine's Day thank you cards to people they appreciate. Taylor and I had fun getting crafty!

These sweet girls really make my week special. Our student testimony this month is from Christianna, one of the students I've been lucky enough to meet and be friends with all year. Here's her story!

Please also be praying for our preparations for SICM. Students are working hard to fundraise so they can go to this incredible leadership training opportunity. 

The Bumpdate!

We got to see the little guy last week at our anatomy scan! He's doing great so far and moving around a TON. Thank you so much for your continued prayers!

Thank you so much for your continued support. I'm so incredibly grateful for you all. Please let me know if there's any way I can be praying for you. Love y'all!


Friday, February 3, 2023

Ready For Spring!

I hope all my Texas readers are surviving the ice and staying warm! It's been a minute since I've gotten to update y'all so I thought I'd take this chance.

If you didn't already know, we have big changes coming to our little family. We're having a baby in July!

We're so excited (and a tiny bit nervous)! The Lord has been sweet to us in this journey. I'm learning to trust Him more because I'm faced with something I just can't control. Pregnancy has also treated me pretty well so far too. I haven't had many ups and downs, only some nausea and growing pains. It's also been so meaningful for me to get to share this with the girls I meet with every week; they have been so kind and supportive and excited for us. Keanna and Rian even got us this custom ornament!

Everyone's support has meant so much to me. Thanks to many of you for your kind words and encouragement! 

Here's what's been happening in our ministry!

The biggest thing was we had Winter Retreat! All of our 11 or so campuses got together for a fun weekend. Shoutout to my Fellowship Baptist Church Family - we were at RiverBend Retreat Center, where I grew up going to camp!

My sweet core (small group) was so encouraging to be around - what a fun group of girls! Hearing many of their reflections afterwards, I know that God used this weekend so bring so many people into a deeper relationship with Him. Many chose to give up things the Lord was calling them to and others chose to more fully commit to serving people God asked them to. 

I also just wanted to share these pictures from our staff's Christmas party. I love the people I get to work with!


We've got a lot of stressed out students so we've been talking often about how important regular time before the Lord is. A lot of our students have been taking this to heart this semester and already I'm seeing people handle their anxiety better and seek the Lord's will and approval first. Since some of you might have some down time right now, I thought I'd send a basic plan that we've been using to help us quiet our hearts before God. Feel free to use this or adapt it if you're looking for some guidance in rest!

Here's our student testimony for February!

Love you guys much, 

Monday, November 21, 2022

Help Us Keep FOCUS Growing!

Every year, we put on a big fundraiser to help us keep the lights on as well as move forward in planting new campuses. Many of you so generously support me each month and year financially, but it takes a lot more than that for us to do ministry! We need money for things like outreach activities/materials, administrative support, planting new campuses, health/retirement benefits, etc. This fundraiser is all about being around for the long haul and expanding our reach.

This year our theme is “Faithfully local”.
One of our core convictions is that we go TO the students and do ministry where they live, eat, study, and play. We move into the neighborhood, so to speak. We contribute to the good of the campus, seeking to improve the culture and experience of each place, and we do so for the long-haul – something especially unique at community colleges that have few long-standing student organizations. 
When new students show up, we’re the locals ready to welcome them to the neighborhood. We train our students to do that well, knowing it’s something they can replicate in the future, wherever God leads them after college. 

Keep FOCUS Growing is about bringing vibrant Christian community to every campus in DFW, and ensuring that we can remain “Faithfully Local” to college and university students for decades to come. 

Here are the details: Some of our generous donors have banded together and agreed to match up to $54,000 in total donations during this campaign. So if we receive $54,000 in total contributions, they will kick in a SECOND $54,000! Your chance to give will be on November 29th!

Many of you already give so generously to me specifically. I don't want anyone to feel pressured to give to this as well! This is simply another opportunity to support us if you are able and willing. And prayers go such a long way in this so if you could be asking God to provide for us, I'd really appreciate it! If you have any questions, please reach out!!

Love y'all,

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

The Semester So Far: God is Faithful

    How are already halfway through October?! I've been wanting to update y'all on a lot of things so this might be a bit longer but the first couple months of school have already been so good!

    You might have heard me mention that this year I'm focusing the majority of my time over at TWU! My peer team (the core leaders I meet with) are all at TWU and I am leading a core there too. And I have absolutely loved getting to spend more time on this campus! Welcome week (the week before school starts where we try to meet the new and returning students getting on campus) was just a blast! TWU itself doesn't have a ton of events until the end of the week so we spent a lot of time hanging out in the student union, playing games and chatting with anyone who wanted a place to hang out.

TWU takes over Rusty Taco.

Of course we always end up at the Denton Square at some point. We have so much fun exploring, playing games, and hanging out. Two of the girls pictured here ended up in my small group and I've loved getting to know them more!

Students love crafts at TWU so we did a lot of those! Here is us doing Tie Dye a Tote Bag! I met a girl here who I actually get to study the Bible with now!

    Welcome week was so incredibly encouraging. Both UNT and TWU have really high enrollment numbers this year so at times I was honestly a little overwhelmed with the number of students on campus. But God has been so faithful to bring us people looking for community and friendship. We have a lot of students who grew up in church but at some point stopped making that a priority. As they come to college, they are curious and interested in who Jesus is. Honestly, some of them don't stick around as they get busy with school work or other ways of spending their time that are more attractive. But many of them stay. The fruit I can already see God forming in their lives literally leads me to tears when I think about it. Our God is so faithful.

    The first week of school, we had our first Thursday Night Fellowship. I was blown away by how many students were so excited to get together and worship God. We packed out the room!

    Our team strategically decided that we needed to focus more effort at T-dub because 5 of our 7 student leaders are graduating in the spring. Our prayer is that God will raise up new leaders out of the girls currently in cores. So that's my role right now! We have four cores and about 60-70 girls overall in the cores. I meet with all of the corefas (student leaders) at TWU each week. They have also been such a source of encouragement to me. Most of them are seniors and very busy in their majors, yet they carve out a lot of time each week to invest in their cores, classmates, professors, and anyone else they meet on campus. I have not gotten a picture of my peer team yet but I'll share one when I get them together soon!

    The other main thing I do at T-dub is lead a core! I get the privilege of facilitating core with Hannah (middle) and Madai (right) and have absolutely loved that! You might remember Hannah from my peer team last year too, so I get to spend another year with her!

    Our core has been so incredibly sweet! Watching them become friends and care about each other is such a cool experience.

And the last big update: Fall Camp!!
    Last weekend, we took the students to Mt Lebanon Camp and spent about 24 hours playing, worshipping, and building friendships in our community.

Our whole Denton community!

The TWU girls representing

For a fun core thing, we bleach dyed shirts and they turned out so cute!

From left to right: Me, Madison, Hannah, Christianna, Madai, Abby, Addy, Madeleine

If you can't tell, I'm just pretty obsessed with these girls. 

    All that to say, thank you for praying for us! I have felt your prayers as we've been working on these campuses. Hearts are soft, making a way for people to see their need for Jesus.

    I'm so grateful to each of you for being a part of this mission with me! Thank you for your prayers and support. If there is any way I can be praying for you or anything you need, don't hesitate to reach out!

Love y'all,

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Prayerfully anticipating the school year!

It's the start of a new school year! I'm so excited to jump into this year and see what God has in store for us and these campuses. But first, here's a little bit about my summer! 

What a summer it's been! At the end of the school year, we took about a hundred students on a trip to Washington to attend SICM (Student Institute of Campus Ministry). We spent a couple of days exploring Seattle before heading up to Bellingham for the conference put on by our friends at another campus ministry up there. 

The gum wall at Pike Place market is disgusting but somehow pretty at the same time - go figure.

I could not get enough of this view!

The last time we were able to have SICM in Washington was at the end of my apprenticeship in 2019. The left picture is of me and the other apprentices from the same class and the right picture is us going back this year!

I love getting to hang with Darby and Shayla. Working with them in Denton has allowed us to form close friendships and it's one of the sweetest things about my work to me.

I think these students were so blessed and challenged by the conference, I know I was. I was reminded of how big God's mission is. He is working worldwide and we get to partner with him wherever we find ourselves. I've been encouraged more to pray for the world and world missions! 

Honestly, the whole trip was a big reminder of how much more I have to grow in prayer specifically. I often feel a pressure to cover more ground in my prayers - to pray for more people and situations, not forgetting anything. But the truth is that having a relationship with God means moving beyond my prayer list and letting the Spirit lead me in how I pray. It's comforting to know that I can trust Him to develop our relationship, that burden isn't solely mine. What a good God!

Jon and I celebrated 3 years of marriage in July! We made a plant terrarium at my favorite plant shop.

I got to visit my grandma too!! I haven't been able to see her in the pandemic so I loved getting to be there.

A few girls from my core got together for brunch in Fort Worth!

I wanted to say a big thank you to those who have prayed and contributed to my fundraising season this summer! This was probably my most encouraging fundraising round and it's because the people I've gotten to talk to have been so kind and encouraging. I ended up at around 94% of my goal, which I'm really content with! I plan on fundraising some into the semester but I just feel so blessed by God providing for me. Whether you yourself were able to give financially or not, I very much appreciate you being a part of this mission with me. 

Looking forward

Our staff has also been spending a lot of time planning for the school year. One of the things I'm most excited about is some plans we have for TWU. The last few years, we've mixed the UNT and TWU corefas (student small group leaders) so that each pastor meets with both UNT and TWU students. This year we're changing it up and making a TWU peer team (group of corefas that get regular time with a certain staff person). And I'll get to head that up! The corefas for TWU we have this year have all been corefas before so we have some real momentum there we want to capitalize on. Our goal is to build up a new generation of leaders and really emphasize disciples making disciples. You might have heard that a church can disappear in one generation and that's even more true for college ministry where we get barely four years with a student. So if we don't pour into people now, we would struggle in the coming years. As I write that, I realize that sounds daunting but I'm really not worried. I am confident that the Lord has made a way for his kingdom to grow at TWU. I'm really looking forward to getting integrated over there and getting to love that campus more!

Ways to pray

- Would you pray for TWU? For me and the corefas to be faithful and love that campus so well. For students there to find community and friendship and ultimately the Lord.

- Pray for our corefa team and other leaders in our community to serve the Lord wholeheartedly this year. 

- Pray for our community to root their identity in the Lord and to find their security, comfort, and purpose in Him. This is the prayer our staff has been praying and we'd love for you to join us in that.

Love you guys! As always, feel free to reach out at any time to chat or ask for prayer!