February Prayer Update

On Mission for God

Isaiah 52:7 "How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation.”

After teaching the Bible lesson in a GNC one afternoon, a little girl came to me for counseling about how to receive Jesus as her Savior. We talked through scripture and she asked me a question, “But how do you know that you are saved?”

That little girl was searching for answers to her questions about God. If it were your child or grandchild, would you turn them away or ignore them? I dare say that you would make it your priority to identify the answers and make sure that the child understood what the scriptures have to say. If you didn't know the answer, would you not be compelled to find it?

What a privilege it is to bring good news of peace, love and happiness! We have eight schools where we have an open door and children enrolled in clubs, but no churches yet willing to partner with those schools. There are children there with questions, some who are hearing about Jesus for the first time, some who are hurting and searching for love and some who have accepted Jesus and are in need of discipleship. Will you join us in prayer for volunteers for these children and their schools? Will you ask God to stir hearts and send people who will be compelled to be on mission with God, share the Gospel and show love to children? The children need believers who care about them. The children need you!

For His Glory,

Lisa V. Yerrick

 Praises

·    For the 8,710 children enrolled in 100 schools and 15 community Good News Clubs (GNC) so far this school year and the 1,682 volunteers conducting those clubs.

Prayer Requests

·    The children and families who attended the Good News Spectacular this past weekend.

·    Volunteers—specifically church partnerships for schools.

·    Recruitment of Summer Missionaries for CYIA (Christian Youth in Action) to conduct summer Good News Clubs

January Prayer Update

agriculture-field-grain-5980.jpg

Pray Earnestly to the Lord of the Harvest

Luke 10:2 And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

November 7, 2018 was the CEF World Day of Prayer—a day set aside for this global ministry to come together and pray. On that day, Reese Kauffman, CEO of Child Evangelism Fellowship, released a video challenging chapters around the world to develop local prayer initiatives that address the call of Luke 10:2 to “pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest.” He also challenged us to pray daily to God for laborers for the CEF mission field.

As we began to pray and think about this task, we identified several important criteria: to pray daily, to pray earnestly (fervently, passionately, like we mean business), to pray specifically and to pray corporately (together). With those criteria in mind, we’ve developed an initiative that began this week. Tuesday and Wednesday each week, our Greenville office will be open and staffed at 8:00 a.m. for prayer. We have compiled specific requests from CEF chapters globally, nationally and on the state level. We are praying specifically for these requests together when we meet. Our staff has added this request for laborers to our personal prayer time. We have also shared these requests in writing with each club in our Greenville/Piedmont chapter and asked volunteers and children to pray.

We humbly ask that you join us in this world-wide initiative. How? Come by our office one morning and pray with us. Add this request to your list and pray passionately and daily. Pull together a group of friends, colleagues, neighbors or family and pray on a specific day of the week. Please boldly take this request to the throne and let’s watch as God delights his people in offering immeasurably more than we ask!

Lisa V Yerrick

Praises

  • For the 8,477 children enrolled in school & community Good News

  • Clubs (GNC) so far this school year & the 1,647 volunteers conducting those clubs.

  • For God’s provision through recent Challenge Grant gifts.

Prayer Requests

  • Workers for the harvest—specifically church partnerships for schools.

  • Recruitment of Summer Missionaries to conduct summer Good News Clubs.

  • New community locations for Good News Clubs.

Lunch & Learns Are Coming!

Topic: Managing the Children

Discipline helps for Grade Shepherds – Right discipline makes GNC fun!

0X2A8548.jpg

Join us for this time of learning and fellowship! ANYONE who works in GNC and would like help in knowing how to help children focus in order to learn truth is invited to our Lunch and Learns taking place in 5 locations. A free meal is included! Please RSVP to your Ministry Coordinator by Friday, February 1st.

Find all the details by clicking on the items below.

Luke 10:2 Prayer Initiative

49592449_1936362013079591_6917505671608926208_o.png

In Luke 10:2 we read, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

The Greenville CEF office will open two mornings per week for prayer. Staff will be in the building on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings at 8:00 am and will have written prayer requests. We invite community members, church partners, GNC volunteers, parents, summer missionaries, Local Committee members, etc. to come by and pray with us for God to send laborers for his harvest. We also invite other groups around the upstate to pray together on other days of the week, so that we are taking our requests daily to the throne of God. If you have a group meeting to pray, please let us know. Be a part of this world-wide CEF prayer initiative! Begins Tuesday, January 8th. Contact the office at 864-292-5842 with questions.

Presents: Why We Give at Christmas

rawpixel-445788-unsplash.jpg

“We love because He first loved us.” - 1 John 4:19

In the beginning God created the whole world, and He said it was good. But man sinned, and the result was separation from God. Because God loved us so much, He sent His perfect Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for us. He gave us the perfect gift when He sent Jesus, and that is why we celebrate Christmas.

We give presents at Christmas time to celebrate the first and best Christmas gift ever given- Jesus! Many attribute the inspiration of giving gifts at Christmas time to the Wise Men: gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Though these gifts may seem odd to us, they held great significance.

Gold was often associated with royalty, signifying that Jesus was the King of Kings. Frankincense was burned as incense in Jewish worship-- this signified that people would worship Jesus. Myrrh was regularly used in the process of preparing dead bodies. This pointed to Jesus’ suffering and death.

Gifts are an expression of love and appreciation. They are often a result of sacrifice, given with no expectations. Over 2000 years ago, we were given the perfect gift. Though we celebrate the gift of Jesus at Christmas, we don’t have to just wait for one day out of the year. We can, and should, celebrate all year long, sharing that gift with everyone around us!


Legends of the Candy Cane

balls-candy-cane-christmas-247074.jpg

The Christmas season is often filled with delicious treats of all kinds-- cookies, cakes, hot cocoa, gingerbread. One of the most popular Christmas candies is the candy cane. Though there are many legends of how the candy cane came to be, there are two that are especially heart warming.

One story of the candy cane is said to have originated in the late 1600s. A choirmaster gave candy canes to children hoping to keep them quiet during the long Nativity service. Candy canes at this time were simple white sticks of candy. In honor of the Christmas story, the choirmaster shaped the candies to resemble a shepherd's staff.

Another story is credited to the 18th century. It is said that in certain areas of Europe at that time, there was a ban on public displays of Christianity. There was a Christian candy maker who wanted to be able to share Jesus with the local children who would not otherwise have an opportunity to see displays of Christianity at Christmas.

Having prayed about what he could do, he had the idea of the candy cane. According to the story, the candymaker had a reason for each design piece of the candy. He chose a shape that would resemble that of a shepherd’s staff as well as a “J” for Jesus. The white represented the purity of Jesus who was sinless, and the red stripes represented the blood of Jesus that was shed for our sins.

Though it is not known whether this story is true, the candy cane is now a wonderful reminder of who Jesus is, and why we celebrate Christmas. Not only that, but each time we share a candy cane, we have the opportunity to share the Gospel with them!


Christmas Candles

denny-muller-711681-unsplash.jpg

In the windows of our homes we often add brightly lit candles as part of our Christmas decorations. Though they add warmth and light, there is actually a story behind the tradition that many Americans practice.

Like other Christmas symbols, the origin of the candles in the window is credited to legend. One such legend dates back to the 17th century in Ireland, during a time in which Irish Catholicism was suppressed by England. Priests went into hiding, some living in caves. Because corporate worship meetings were prohibited, families would place a candle in the window, and leave their doors unlocked on Christmas, in order to let the priest know he would be welcome in their home.

When soldiers began to notice this practice, the people said the candles were a religious tradition, to light the way for Mary and Joseph. This appeased the soldiers, and the candles have since become a tradition.

In John 8:12 (ESV) Jesus says, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” What a wonderful time of the year to share the light of Jesus with others! As we see the candles that brighten our windows during this season, let it inspire us to share the Light with those around us.


The Christmas Tree

jeswin-thomas-466474-unsplash.jpg

Trees festively decorated with lights and ornaments are an exciting reminder that Christmas is just around the corner. But where did this tradition originate, and how has it become one of the most iconic symbols of the season?

Though now a cheerful display of the Christmas season, these trees have not always been a Christian-related symbol. This tradition actually began in ancient times. Many people groups, including the Romans, would bring pieces of fir trees into their home for decoration, as well as pieces of holly and mistletoe. Because these are some of the few winter blooming greeneries, they were seen as symbols of fertility and new life.

Early Christmas trees were actually hung upside down and suspended from the ceiling. Some who couldn’t afford a tree, would build pyramids from wood to look like trees, and decorate them with paper, apples, and candles.

No one is completely sure of how the Christmas tree became a Christian symbol. However, there are several stories and legends. One such story claims that the first to bring a Christmas tree into a home, was Martin Luther. While walking through the forest one night, he looked up through the trees and saw the beautifully starlit sky. He told his family it reminded him of Jesus, who left the heavens to come to earth.

The Bible says in Hebrews 13:8 that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” As we see evergreen trees during the Christmas season, we are reminded that Jesus is alive forever. He came to earth as a baby over 2000 years ago, and died on a cross to save us from our sins if we accept Him as our Savior. Then, three days later, He rose again, and now lives in Heaven. As you see Christmas trees around you this season, let it be a reminder of what Jesus did for us and why we celebrate Christmas.


November Prayer Update

0X2A8507.jpg

He Enables Me

In this season of Thanksgiving, I find myself reading in the book of Habakkuk. It is a short, but interesting little book where this prophet of the Lord lodges a couple of complaints to God about the dire circumstances in which God’s people find themselves. God responds to each complaint with assurance of his sovereignty and justice. The final chapter is Habakkuk’s prayer, a recognition of God Almighty in his glory, his wrath and his deliverance. The final verses of this chapter resonate with me as Habakkuk takes a posture of humility and gratitude, despite his circumstances.

Habakkuk 3: 17-19 Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.

Being joyful in the Lord requires thanksgiving—an attitude of gratitude found far beyond one’s circumstances. God clearly does not remove all difficulties and challenges in life, instead he provides an alternative. Deer have amazing feet that allow them to quickly and efficiently bound to high places of safety from the many predators who seek to destroy them.

While we are celebrating a season of plenty, you or others you know may experience the gaping void of loss or want or injustice that aim to defeat you. I pray you find your hope on the mountain top of salvation, in the strength that God provides you to climb and in joyful thanksgiving to the God who rescues you.

For His Glory,

Lisa V Yerrick

PRAISES

  • For the many area churches and individuals who financially support our ministry.

  • For the 7,582 children enrolled in Good News Clubs (GNC) so far this school year.

  • For the 225 salvation decisions made by children in GNC since school began.

PRAYER REQUESTS

  • For God’s vision in reaching more children in the coming year.

  • For hearts of joy and thanksgiving in doing God’s work.

  • That God provides church partnerships for the remaining schools which are in need of volunteers in order to conduct GNC.

A History of Thanksgiving

map-3409359_1920.jpg

Surprisingly, the first national celebration of Thanksgiving actually had nothing to do with pilgrims, turkey, or cranberry sauce. In 1789, George Washington declared that Thursday, November 26 of that year, would be recognized as a holiday of Thanksgiving. It would be a day of “public thanksgiving and prayer” devoted to “the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be.” Though first celebrated in 1789, Thanksgiving was not declared an annual holiday until 1863.

There were several individuals who passionately felt that Thanksgiving should be an annual holiday. One such citizen that was especially passionate about this, was Sarah Josepha Hale. Hale was the editor for the women’s magazine Godey’s Lady’s Bookfor almost 40 years. Inspired by the story of the pilgrims, Hale was intrigued with the idea of turning the pilgrims’ feast into a holiday. She began publishing articles with recipes for turkey, pumpkin, and cranberries. She also used the magazine as a platform to begin a campaign to persuade President Lincoln to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday.

In 1863, Hale and like minded patriots finally persuaded Lincoln, who declared that the 4th Thursday in November would henceforth be observed as the holiday we now know as Thanksgiving. In his proclamation, Lincoln said it would be “a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.”

We often think of the Pilgrims, Indians, turkey, and pumpkin pie when we think of Thanksgiving. But our leaders who instituted the holiday did so with the intent of focusing our thanksgiving on God. May we be mindful of the One who deserves our thanks and praise, on this Thanksgiving and everyday.

“. . . In everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” -Phil. 4:6


The Freedom to be Thankful

home-2015-11-thanksgiving-dinner-stocksy-main.jpg

America is unique in the fact that we have a day set aside for the sole purpose of being thankful. For many of us, it only takes us a moment to think of things to be thankful for, such as food, shelter, freedom, family, and- for those of us who are Christians- Jesus. We celebrate Thanksgiving as a reminder of the hardships and oppression that the pilgrims suffered in their journey to a world free from governmental restraints. It is also a time to reflect on our blessings.

Though it is important that we recognize and remember these events, what about the other 364 days in the year? Is it possible that we get so hung up in our busyness, that our thanksgiving gets left behind for the rest of the year? As Americans and as Christians we have much for which to be thankful.

Many of the pilgrims who celebrated the first Thanksgiving, came to America in pursuit of religious freedom. As we attend Sunday church services, weekly Bible studies, and other gatherings with fellow believers, it is easy to forget what a privilege each of these opportunities are. We are blessed to live in a country where we have the freedom to worship how we choose. Many of our Christian brothers and sisters around the world risk their lives daily just for gathering to worship.

Not only do we live in a country where we have religious freedom, but we also have the right to elect those in power in our country and let our voices be heard concerning issues about which we are passionate. We aren’t told where to work, where to live, or what to wear. There are many freedoms we experience daily that we so easily take for granted.

We have the freedom to be thankful- to publicly praise the Lord for all He has done for us. As we go about our daily routines, let each decision we make remind us how blessed we are to be able to make them.





Giving Tuesday

Save the date and join us for Giving Tuesday—the worldwide day of give!

Save the date - twitter.png

#GivingTuesday is a global giving movement that has been built by individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities in countries around the world. Millions of people have come together to support and champion the causes they believe in and the communities in which they live. We have two days for getting deals – Black Friday and Cyber Monday. On #GivingTuesday, we have a day for giving back. Together, people are creating a new ritual for our annual calendar. #GivingTuesday is the opening day of the giving season and leads into our Year End Giving grant!

September Prayer Update

0X2A5233_edit.jpg

Seasons

II Timothy 4:2—preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; correct, rebuke, encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

I admit that I love the change of seasons. As we move into late September, I get excited about the changes that will occur as a result of Autumn approaching. I love the colors, smells and temperatures of the Fall. I often tell friends and family, “I’m SO ready for Fall!”

II Timothy 4:2 indicates something different about the season of God’s Word. While we may anxiously await some “seasons” to come around, be it football or a new as-signment or retirement, Paul is speaking with urgency in this passage about preaching the Word of God. Instead of waiting, Paul instructs us to be prepared to share God’s Word all the time, whether the circumstance seems favorable or not. We don’t have to long for just the right time—the time is now to share the Gospel, to correct sin, to encourage others and to do those things with the same grace that Jesus shows us. The Gospel message is never out of season! What are you ready for?

For His Glory,

Lisa V Yerrick

Praises

  • Attendance of 414 volunteers who came to be trained and refreshed at the Fall Back-to-School workshop in late August.

  • Good News Clubs meeting in 101 elementary schools around the upstate this Fall.

  • For changed-lives as a result of salvation through Christ Jesus.

Prayer Requests

  • That God’s provision for the ministry would be bountiful for the coming year, through our three Annual Fundraising Banquets this month.

  • That all who have an influence on children in this ministry would be willing to go deeper with God in their own spiritual walk.

  • That God would stir the hearts of servants in churches he has chosen to be partners with school Good News Clubs that are in need.

  • For volunteers and staff - energy, focus, and joy in our mission

Lunch and Learns

18320664_1296255000423632_2686944906474009284_o.jpg

Lunch & Learns Week of October 1!

Some locations have limited seating, so please RSVP as soon as possible.  
Reservations needed 
no later than September 28!!

Welcome to a new school year! We have been praying for your first week of clubs and pray that all has gone well.  As you know, the ministry depends on you, our volunteers, and we want to resource and equip you to serve children well.  

The topic for our Lunch & Learn in October is Follow-up. This process is a vital piece in discipling a new believer. As in the past, we will be hosting the Lunch & Learns in several locations during the week of October 1.  Please choose the day and location that works best for you and then RSVP to your Ministry Coordinator no later than Thursday, September 28. Lunch, of course, will be served in each location.  

 

Pick a day...pick a location...and pass this along to all of your volunteers!!  

11:30 am-1:00 pm all locations

Reply to this email or to your ministry coordinator today!

 

Monday, 10/1 - Greenville
Calvary Baptist Church-Atrium
3810 Grandview Drive, Simpsonville 29680

 

Tuesday, 10/2 - Pickens
Siloam Baptist Church-Fellowship Hall
229 Siloam Road, Easley, 29642

 

Wednesday, 10/3 - Greenville
North Hills Church-Community Room
4952 Edwards Road, Taylors 29687

 

Thursday, 10/4 - Anderson
Victory Baptist Church - Fellowship Hall
322 Fretwell Drive, Anderson, 29626

 

Friday, 10/5 - Oconee
Seneca Baptist Church
1080 S. Oak St., Seneca, 29678

 

Please remember that all attendance at the Lunch & Learns counts toward your annual Member's Club discount.

 

For His glory,

Lisa Yerrick
Local Coordinator

 

 

August Prayer Update

hands-2274254_960_720.jpg

Psalm 46:10—Be still and know that I am God.

As school begins this month, life seems to be a hustle of activity and excitement. Hand -in-hand with that frenzy comes increased obligations, busier schedules, and greater pressures on restraints of time, resources and energy. When I read Psalm 46:10, I wonder how I can possibly be so busy and yet be still? In studying this passage, one commentary suggests that the stillness God commands here is meant for his challengers. Evidenced in the previous verses, he stilled his enemies and wreaked havoc on those who would oppose him. I find that I can make my body be still, but most days it is almost impossible to still my mind. I have so many important things to think about, analyze, address, and problem solve, leaving little to no room in my mind for God. At these times, has my mind become the enemy battlefield against my Lord? Am I even able to receive an answer, a drop of wisdom or discernment from God? When my mind is overwhelmed, I will commit to creating space there for God to fill with his goodness, wisdom and joy. How about you?

Praises

  • Schools in Greenville County that have opened doors for new Good News Clubs this academic year
  • Five-day clubs reached 1,088 children during the summer and facilitated 25 salvations
  • New church partnerships to conduct Good News Clubs in schools

Prayer Requests

  • That God would prepare the hearts of children who will hear his word and his plan for their salvation
  • For the many GNC volunteers and church partners who start clubs in September; that God would bring an abundance of volunteers, for enthusiasm and joy, for focus on God’s purposes
  • That God would do immeasurably more than we might ask or imagine at our upcoming Annual Fundraising Banquet in September

To His Glory,

Lisa Yerrick

Back2School Workshop

back-to-school-183533_1920.jpg

Yes...the kick-off workshop happens in only 3 weeks!!  Hopefully you have contacted your principal and have emailed/faxed/mailed your Principal Visit Form to us.  If so, then you should have received your Registration Form for this school year. Most school districts are having their "Meet the Teacher" on August 16th...only two weeks from now!  This is a great opportunity to distribute the Registration Form to the children and meet their parents.  Just a few days after "Meet the Teacher" we will have an awesome workshop for all GNC volunteers.  The following is information you need to know and share:

1.  The first workshop is Saturday, August 25th, at Taylors First Baptist Church from 9 am to 2 pm.  The schedule is available here.  Please forward it to all of your volunteers.  There are many breakout choices for every Good News Club volunteer, so please encourage your team to attend this training and also receive credit towards the Member's Club fees and DSS credit for those who need it.

2.  We will be providing complimentary snacks and lunch for each attendee.

3.  FYI...we will be offering a special "Junior Leader Track" again for rising 5th graders.  This is a great way to get/keep your 5th graders involved and excited about Good News Club.  Contact your 4th graders from last year, as well as homeschooled middle school age youth, to participate in these sessions of the workshop.

4.  Good News Clubs begin the week of September 10th.

5.  It's not too early to sign up for Teaching Children Effectively (TCE)!  This is a life-changing course and is highly recommended and encouraged for all teachers, pastors and volunteers in your Good News Club.  Having a TCE trained teacher in your club also gives you a $25 annual credit towards Member's Club for each teacher.  We will be offering TCE in  Anderson at Oakdale Baptist Church in the evenings beginning September 10th and in Taylors at our office in the mornings beginning September 12th. For complete information and a printable flier, please click here.

Let's make this the best year ever for Good News Clubs...reaching and ministering to the children of the Upstate.  Thank you for your willing hearts and service to the children.

For His glory,

Lisa Yerrick
Local Director

Meet the Summer Missionaries: Job Tan

 
Job2.png
 

Job lives in Greenville, SC and is a rising sophomore at Eastside High. This is his first year serving as a summer missionary, and he has had the opportunity to serve alongside his older brother Levi.

Job was three years old when he became a Christian. “Levi was a new Christian and he kept telling me that I needed to be saved and kept witnessing to me. After a while I talked with my parents about how I could be saved and then I prayed and asked Jesus to be my savior.”

Having seen his brother serve as a CYIA Summer Missionary, Job wanted to serve as a Summer Missionary as well. “He started two years before me, and I could tell it was a really great experience for him. He told me all about what they did and how much he enjoyed it. Levi and I are both introverts, and this opportunity helped him to be able to teach, and to tell the Gospel better and more comfortably,” Job said. “One of the ways I really saw that, was when he practiced at home and used his teacher voice.”

Job said he has thoroughly enjoyed his first year as a Summer Missionary. One of his favorite things about serving this summer, has been seeing the change in individual children, from the first day of camp to the last day. “I remember one kid specifically who was especially difficult on the first day. He was older and would fold his arms during the songs and not participate. By the end of the week, he was completely participating and dancing to every song,” Job said. He said the children’s responses have been amazing.

Job enjoys rock climbing, and playing frisbee in his free time. He also enjoys spending time with his family, reading, playing games and watching movies. Some of his favorite movies are Marvel movies and other superhero and action movies.

As the summer comes to a close, Job asked that we pray that he can finish strong. “Pray that I don’t get too comfortable, and not study, because I want to do the best I can in presenting the Gospel. Also as I go out of the summer, pray that my walk with God would continue, and I would grow closer to Him, and that I would be able to spread the Gospel during the school year as well, not just during the summer.”

Meet the Summer Missionaries: Levi Tan

 
Levi1.png
 

Levi lives in Greenville, SC and is a rising senior at Eastside High. He has three siblings-- a sister and two brothers-- of which he is the second oldest. Born in Indiana, Levi has since lived in Michigan, and, for the past ten years, SC. He currently attends Grace Church.

Levi came to know Jesus as his savior at a young age. “I was probably four or five years old. I grew up in a Christian family that brought me to church for as long as I can remember.” He had heard a lot about Jesus, but that age was when he started to realize that the Gospel applied to him, and that he hadn’t yet believed in Jesus, and was not a Christian. He remembers not being able to go to sleep, because he kept thinking about what Jesus had done, what that meant for him, and how he had done wrong things. He spoke with his parents about how he had done wrong, and asked them how he could have Jesus. They talked to him about how Jesus took the punishment for anyone who would believe in him, what that meant, and how Levi could believe. Levi prayed and asked Jesus to forgive him of his sins. “God started to change me more, and made me realize that I shouldn’t continue doing the wrong things I had been.”

Before he began attending Grace church, Levi attended Horizon Church. There he met Melissa Young, who was involved with Good News Clubs. She helped him set up an interview with CYIA. As he began this process, he prayed and asked God what He wanted him to do. He was encouraged to meet so many Christian people his age at pre-training. He saw that they wanted to get closer to God and help younger children to get to know Him. “That was something I wanted to be like. I’d always loved children, and I’d been saved at a young age. I knew that they for sure could get to know Christ, and I would love to have a part in that. So I decided to join.”

This is Levi’s third year serving with CYIA. His first year, he was very timid, and not very outgoing. He said it helped that a lot of the other people were outgoing, because at his middle school, he didn’t have a lot of Christian friends. He had seen people start to drift into the world’s view of pleasure and success, and it made him really sad. His first year made him realize that he could have friends who knew God, loved God, and wanted His will in their lives. It also helped him to start being able to better communicate.

Levi’s brother Job is also a CYIA summer missionary this year. Levi said it has been good to see Job grow closer to the Lord and other Christians.

During his free time, Levi enjoys rock climbing. In elementary school PE, Levi tried a wide variety of games. “I was relatively fast for my size, but there were larger people who were faster. As a small person, I wasn’t very good at basketball or football or the traditional guy sports. Around when I started high school, my older brother went to college where he was introduced to rock-climbing. When he came back, he introduced it to us.” Levi said being small was an advantage in itself because he doesn’t have as much weight to lift up. He also enjoys playing ultimate frisbee and spikeball, and his favorite animal is a narwal.

Please be praying for Levi and his team as they begin wrapping up for the summer. He said that with even fewer summer missionaries this year, there is a jump in responsibility because there are still a large amount of children at clubs. “With three people, it’s manageable but it’s definitely a lot harder to keep the kids under control and also just to make goody bags for them all.”

 

Meet the Summer Missionaries: Laura Partin

 
Laura1 copy.png
 

Laura is a native of Greenville, SC, and a recent high school graduate. Having been homeschooled kindergarten through 12th grade, she was a part of a co-op, which she said was a really cool experience. Her latter half of high school, she also took classes at North Greenville University, where she will begin attending in the fall. She is excited to be studying Digital Media, as it will give her the opportunity to serve in many types of capacities.

Laura trusted in Jesus as her Savior when she was 7 years old. As she has seen on many occasions in Good News Clubs, even young children are capable of understanding the Gospel. However, she said at that time, there was a lot she still did not understand. A few years later, when she was 10 years old, she attended a children’s camp with her church. “I wish I could remember exactly what the leader shared, but it just hit me, and I rededicated my life. It was at that point that I really started growing; knowing what my walk with Christ meant. And I am still growing!”

Laura’s journey with CEF and CYIA began over ten years ago. Her family hosted GNC clubs in their home for several years, and she and her siblings were all a part of it. Her oldest sister began serving as a Summer Missionary in 2008, her brother started in 2010, her other sister began in 2012, and Laura joined in 2015. “I saw how it was shaping them-- not only in growing them as followers, but also in everyday skills like public speaking, and it seemed like such a great program to be a part of.” She took a year off last summer, and thought she had perhaps completed her journey as a CYIA missionary. But God showed her He was not done with her here yet. “I’m really glad that He brought me back, and I am excited to see how God will use our whole team. I’ve already seen him at work so much!”

In her free time, Laura loves to craft. She is currently attempting to master weaving. She also enjoys drawing and painting. Another of her passions is coffee. “I love coffee, so I know every coffee shop in Greenville,” she said. “And several outside of Greenville.”

As Laura serves with her team this summer, pray that she and her teammates will remain encouraged, though they have a small team. She said it has been really cool to watch God use their team, but it’s hard not having a big community like there has been in the past. Pray that they find community in the few, as they continue to share the love of God with the boys and girls they serve.