For my wife Carrie and I the summer of 2012 will go down as one of the greatest we’ve ever had. In my 4th year directing Awakening Teen Camp we saw thousands of teenagers from 27 different countries come through Kansas City for our camps and conferences. We saw hundreds get saved, nearly a thousand commit to, and were commissioned as missionaries to their high school campuses. We saw a counselor team of 50 pour out their lives on behalf of the next generation. In turn they emerged from the 8 week marathon of camp with transformed hearts and appetites wetted to preach the gospel and make disciples. We saw a 40 person camp staff pull off the logistics and content of camp tirelessly and emerge with hearts alive. 8 weeks of non stop ministry, 5 camps and retreats, 2 conferences, 1 intensive, all of it fruitful. God made a significant impact this summer, and we are already hearing stories of teens rallying large numbers of their peers at their churches, homes, and schools to go hard after the Lord. It’s incredible!
This summer was also especially unique, because it was our last.
At the beginning of 2012 my heart began to ache for the state of our nation, and state of my city; Kansas City. The “ache” was primarily felt as a National conference speaker and organizer. I was meeting so many in the church whose hearts were legitimately sparked by the initial messages, but were so lost a month later because there was a lack of leadership where they were to lead them. Different friends and leaders floated the idea of my wife and I one day planting a church. At the time I thought it was a great idea… in 10 years. As things started to pick up for me nationally in conference ministry, the ache only grew. Conference ministry has a true and needed function, however for me I was longing to pick a region and labor with a group of people for a decade or two and make a lasting impact somewhere.
To make a long story very short: (As I plan on writing other posts about this journey)
In March Carrie and I talked with some different pastors, leaders, and heads of church networks, and they offered us the option to take over a church in Kansas City that is needing a a pastor. The truth is, today many churches are without pastors as many, among other things, are quitting at an alarming rate.
Since March, Carrie and I have been on the slow journey of transitioning to becoming senior pastors of a church here in Kansas City. As a result, we took the crazy leap of making this summer our final summer directing Awakening Teen Camp. A role I plan on blogging more about, but a role I have been so privileged to have held as I’ve gotten to see thousands of teens’ hearts and lives transformed by the grace and power of God.
So for those that follow here, pray for us in this transition. I’m being intentionally ambiguous on the details as they are still in a liquid state. I’ll share more when things solidify, which is why this is merely “the turn signal”, and not yet the turn.
Until things become final, we are still on staff at the International House of Prayer serving in leadership and in many various functions including teaching at the Bible School, and in the Prayer Room. We love IHOPKC. We love ATC. And we are excited to see where this journey takes us, and I’ll be sure to let you know when it starts! 😉