Newsletter 1

Welcome to our blog! We pray that this finds you well and growing in knowledge of God our saviour. As we write this it has been a couple of weeks since the University year has ended, and its still a week ‘til the mission/Christmas/conference season really takes hold. We though it was a good time to take a breath, launch our blog and thank God for all he’s being doing in our lives this year.

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Plans for next year
A new job
We were all excited and getting ready to move to Sydney so that Dan could start studying at Moore Theological College when, things changed. Now we are all excited and getting ready for another year in Canberra.

Dan will still be finishing up MTS but rather than moving on from student ministry at the University of Canberra, God has given him the opportunity to continue our involvement there. Dan will be taking over the team-leader role on campus, filling the vacancy left by Con Campbell. Con and his family are moving to Sydney so that Con can take up the position of Lecturer at Moore College.

At first the idea of taking on this role was very daunting but as we thought and prayed about it, we felt God was giving us the opportunity to continue to serve here and gain invaluable experience in leading and shaping a student ministry. It’ll be hard work and we know that there’ll be times when we’d like to give up; but God gives strength to those who trust in him.

Moving house
That’s right, we’re going to be moving house. Although we love our little cottage in Queanbeyan we have been given the opportunity to move into the Campbell’s former residence across the road from University. This will be great for the student ministry. A house close the campus allows us to be more involved in the lives of the students; hosting Bible studies, prayer meetings, and giving the students a fancy meal every so often. We plan to move in the first week of January and be well established by the start of the University year in mid-February.

Emma’s Work
Emma is really enjoying work, although she finds it very busy at present. She has been studying a correspondence course through Moore College over the past few months and enjoys discussing what she has been learning with Dan. Her exam is in a few weeks time, so she’s madly studying each evening. Pray that she will learn heaps and do well in her exam.

Dan
Dan is trying to set time aside each week to read and get prepared for studying at Bible College (although this has suddenly become a little less urgent). Having Con Campbell as his mate has been very beneficial. Con is completing a PhD in New Testament Greek and over the past 2 years has held Greek classes for all comers. Dan was a bit slack in his first year of MTS (classes were at 8am) but he’s worked harder at Greek this year and enjoys being able to puzzle out more sentences in his Greek Bible. He’s also trying to read books that will be beneficial at College. He’s currently working his way through The Faith of Israel by William Dumbrell. Dan considers this an amazing overview of the Old Testament and would recommend it to anyone.

Year in review
Ministry
The last 6 months of MTS have been by far the best of my 2 year apprenticeship. The mid-year break was dominated by organising Focal Point, the FOCUS mid-year conference. Since then my weeks have been spent in a more regular routine; one-to-one Bible reading, Bible studies, being a part of FOCUS meetings on campus and the Unichurch service of Crossroads Christian Church. These things provide the rhythm to my week. Then there’s all the extra stuff. In the past 6 months I’ve:

been a part of FOCUS campus evangelism, planning and weekly market-day stalls

enjoyed more great training through MTS and spending time with Con Campbell

equipped students to lead better Bible studies during CrossTraining, our 7 week ministry training time

presented God’s word at dialogue meetings (most recently on the topic of The Da Vinci Code), Crossroads International Fellowship, children’s talks for Crossroads and by preaching at the Westminster Presbyterian Church in Belconnen

began Crossfire Oldskool, a Bible study group for students in years 11 and 12

started a book group reading The Universe Next Door by James Sire

worked with AIM Youth, a group that supports and trains young people in Churches throughout the Canberra region

continued in my role as National Prayer Secretary on the board of the Australian Fellowship of Evangelical Students.

Through all this our little cottage in Queanbeyan has been a refuge. Coming home from work with Emma is one of the happiest parts of life. Although we do get frustrated with each other at times, we keep managing to make each other laugh. Her love and support has been the most life-transforming experience I’ve had since becoming a Christian.

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