This has been a challenging year… My life has become different is so many aspects. I am about to finish my first year of seminary, God has blessed me with an opportunity to connect with OTHS in ways that I could have never imagined, and I have been partnering with a group of local youth pastors to find a way to connect Jr. and Sr. High students with Christ, and a local church, all of this while preparing for my first born and eventually being blessed with a baby boy in mid-February. With all of that said, one of the most challenging things for me this year has been having the patience to let God show how Orange will fit in with our congregation.
This was an idea first placed on my heart in August 2014. The goal was to try and connect students and their families, because together life change can happen. However, with guidance and direction from a mentor and friend, the idea of Orange, a strategy used to unite the church and family, came about. It was the combination of the Church (Yellow, representing the light of Christ) and the Family (Red, representing the heartbeat that moves us) to form a substantially stronger influence together (Orange) than they were separate. From that moment on, God has been working on laying the foundation to move this forward in our local congregation.
One of the most recent steps has been attending the Orange Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. This was a tremendous experience that helped to shed light on the ins and outs of what it takes to become Orange. This was a time of challenge, conviction, inspiration, and exploration. At this conference many relationships were formed and connections were made. God will provide for us at First United Methodist Church in O’Fallon, IL. We just need to let Him be our guide.
If you want to know how to get involved in Orange, I have three things for you to start with: Pray, Patience, and Participate. We need your prayer that God would continue to be the guiding light, and the main focus in all that we do. We need your patience, because we by no means have everything figured out yet. God is guiding and leading this process, and we are trying to follow where He leads. Finally, we need your participation. This is a family strategy. That means we need our entire church family. There are so many volunteer opportunities and ways for you to connect. DO NOT miss out on this amazing journey that our church is about to take. God has a plan for us to reach our city, will you be a part of that plan?