Week 1 of school at Washtenaw Community College has been very exciting! The students and I are constantly meeting new people and sharing the vision of what God is doing on campus and will do through all of us as we come together in Christ. A couple of us have also already had about 4 opportunities to share the gospel with students. I will also be following up with a couple students who want to continue some dialogue on the theory of evolution. I will tell you the school teaches evolution as fact and the same people who write the college textbooks, also write high school and elementary textbooks. I encourage you to educate yourself on these matters and grow in apologetics.
We've had a couple of student meetings so far. One a planning meeting along with some vision casting. We have also had a couple prayer meetings as well. Another part of our meetings is based on Acts 2:42-47 "meeting together daily in the temple courts..." accept we are meeting together daily in the food court. By establishing the biblical principles of of prayer, the word, fellowship and meeting together daily for these things, the Lord is faithful in "adding to our number daily." We are only four days into our ministry on campus, but we are praying and expecting the other part of that scripture verse... "those who are being saved."
Thank you for your continued support, prayers and interest in what God is doing at WCC.
All Glory to Jesus!
Divine appointments. Have you ever heard of these? Basically you pray and ask God to set up meetings with people that He has in mind for you to meet that day. I've prayed this often and people somehow end up crossing my path. When I was considering if Washtenaw Community College is where I should serve I was continually in prayer as so were the staff with InterVarsity. I knew one student there and potentially a couple others who weren't necessary mission minded. So I asked for divine appointments. "Lord, I submit this day to you and ask that you grant me divine appointments of your choosing. Amen." So I knew one student at WCC. I knew other students at other colleges around and I put prayer requests out to them. One student responded "I know a guy who goes there." So I received his contact info and set up a meeting. I met with him and the other student that I knew at the food court one day. While we were talking another young man passed by and said hello to his friend that I was talking with. He sat down with us and I explained what we were talking about. I then asked him, "So what have you seen God working on campus?" His eyes lit up, a deep blue and he told me he was called to minister to this campus at WCC. He was so excited that God was bringing something together. Often he had prayed silent prayers asking God to reach this campus with the good news of Jesus Christ. Other students have similar stories and now they are coming together as one body. There is so much more power in working in community. God has designed us for relationships.
Another divine appointment. I read an article in the student paper, The Washtenaw Voice, about a girl who went on a mission trip and used her gifts of music to reach out to and serve an inner city community. I contacted the writer of the article and met with him. He was about to graduate and head to another university. I didn't hear from him after our meeting until I saw him at the Student Leadership retreat. He now has taken a position as the lead editor with the Washtenaw Voice. He also will be joining our InterVarsity group on campus and... writing an article about us in the newspaper. What a blessing! There are other stories like this and I pray many more in the future.
God is faithful to hear our prayers! Look for the unexpected divine appointments today.
Ministry Partners, friends and family,
It is difficult to believe that the school year is upon us in just two weeks. All of the effort and perseverance in the last year has led to what will happen in the next couple weeks and into the school year. Two faculty members, about 8 students and me will be bringing the good news of Jesus to the campus of around 15,000 students and faculty. A couple of the students who attended Washtenaw Community College last year said they dreamed and prayed that God would help them to reach this campus. God has now brought us together for “such a time as this.” Christian students who once walked the campus alone saying silent prayers are now coming together on campus to be the body of Christ and show God’s grace, truth and love in Jesus Christ. It has been through our mutual prayers, financial support and encouragements that we now move on to our next step onto the campus. Thank you and please continue to pray!
For several months I wrestled with developing the vision for our ministry on campus. I asked, What is God’s heart for Washtenaw Community College (WCC)? I prayed, searched the scriptures, observed the campus and enlisted your prayers and the thoughts of students and faculty. This is the vision that we collaboratively developed thanks to the Lord!
InterVarsity Christian Fellowship – Washtenaw Community College
Is a Community of Students and Faculty who are:
Developing Ordinary People
For an Extraordinary Purpose;
Joyfully Advancing the Good News of Jesus Christ!
Now it is my goal to communicate, teach and live out this vision before the students, faculty and other staff members on campus. The vision is not just my own thoughts but it has been developed through the word of God and we know that the Word of God never returns void, but it accomplishes what God has purposed; that in hearing they may believe that Jesus is our Savior and Lord. (Isa.55:11; Eph.1:13-14).
Update & Please continue to pray for:
Official Student Organization forms… turned in.
We are waiting for the approval from the Student Development and Activities Director to become an official student organization.
Strategy: I will be taking a class on African American History & PEA-115 (fitness center) to connect with more ethnically diverse students on campus. We will also be meeting with the International Student Center on campus and asking how we may serve the students, many of whom are refugees from various countries.
Student Leadership Retreat with WCC:
Mitchell Pardo and I will be joining the WCC student clubs on a leadership retreat this Thursday. We will be meeting with many of the staff and student leaders from other student clubs. This is a great opportunity. Please pray for God’s favor for us and that we will have a “servant leaders” heart.
NSO – New Student Outreach: September 15
This is our first opportunity to show ourselves on campus. It is our introduction to the students and faculty on campus. At this point most do not know that our student organization will be on campus yet. We will have a table where students can meet with us and get information regarding InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at WCC. We will be starting conversations about where people are at in their spiritual life, do they know Jesus etc… Please pray for boldness, love, grace and truth as we seek to gently converse about our Jesus. There are so many misconceptions and hurts when it comes to the gospel. I pray that we will be a light in the darkness and that “the Lord added to our number daily those who are being saved.” (Acts 2:47 – italics my changes). Feel free to come check out the “Welcome Day” at WCC.
Financial & Prayer Support:
Interested in contributing to my ministry with InterVarsity?
Click on donate, and consider which donation option works best for you.
Once you decide look for staff member “Todd Jerdon” and make donation in my name to InterVarsity.
Please contact me with questions.
Thank you for your support!
Please pray for the students, faculty and me as we will be meeting this week to discuss establishing our student group as an officially recognized group on campus. Also pray for students who are missionally minded to be drawn to our group. Pray for those divine appointments! School starts in about a month. We have a lot to prepare! God bless!
Friends and Partners in ministry,
A great deal has been happening since I last wrote to you in June. I’m so excited to share my experiences and future plans with you and I hope that you will join me in prayer on the following items. There is so much more than I can write in an email so hopefully we can catch up sometime soon.
Staff Training – National Chapter Planters Cohort
I attended the Chapter Planters Training from June 30 – July 7th in Madison, WI. I traveled by train and bus and resided at the Best Western on the Park right in front of the State Capital. I loved the train ride and met a most interesting man who was a retired music history professor from UofM. The bus ride was not as good since I get motion sick, but thanks to dramamine I slept most of the way. The materials shared at the training were challenging and resonated with my heart and passion for ministry. I know without a doubt that this is where God has called me! There is much to accomplish as I head into my first year of ministry on campus but I am heading in with passion and optimism in what our Almighty God can accomplish in and through the students, faculty and me.
A friend shared a portion of scripture that has made an impression on me this week. It speaks very relevantly to starting a new ministry or figuratively planting.
“…blessed is the man who’s trust is the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8
I love these verses! No fear, no worries and never fail to bear fruit all because our trust is the Lord! Just like a farmer who plants seeds in his field and patiently wait for a harvest, I too pray that the seeds of faith that are sown at Washtenaw Community College (WCC) will bear much fruit, fruit that will last for the kingdom of God. With these thoughts in mind please pray with me.
All summer and for the next month and a half I am asking that we continue to prayer for the WCC campus, 15,000 students and faculty. What is established as the foundational values and vision of this ministry will guide the following generations of students in the way they should go. Prayer and the Word are key to seeking God’s heart. What is God’s heart for this campus and for these people? Some of the core students and I have been walking the campus and praying for God to show us what He is up to. Earnestly seeking God’s heart takes persistence among many distractions. I purposely take myself to a solitary place to talk with God about His heart and mine. Please earnestly pray!
Would you pray for God to grant me clarity for the vision that He has for WCC? It is like a birthing process seeking God for His heart in Word, prayer and learning the needs of students. I want to communicate exactly what God desires for this ministry.
Core of mission minded students
As I have been praying I’ve asked God to specifically grant me divine appointments so that I meet the students He has chosen to help begin this ministry. Jesus did the same by praying for his first disciples as he chose them. God has answered my prayers as I have met a few wonderfully faithful young men of God. Please pray that the Lord will set more of these appointments up for me and the students. Who will be faithful to share the gospel and to live lives above reproach according to the grace God has given them?
Faculty advisor Jon Meyer
Pray for Jon Meyer who is a Philosophy instructor at WCC. He is a recent graduate student from Western Michigan University and he commutes to Ann Arbor every week for his classes while living in Kalamazoo. He is uncertain if he should continue to live in Kzoo or move to the Ann Arbor area. He loves living near home yet the available jobs are here. Pray that he will have discernment and peace as the Lord leads him in this decision. He is a wonderful asset to our ministry.
Officially recognized student organization
Pray for favor with the Director of Student Development and Activities as we seek to become an officially recognized student organization.
Welcome Day outreach and table
Our introduction to the students and faculty will be on Welcome Day sometime in September. This is where all of the student clubs and organizations present themselves to invite and recruit interested students. Pray that we would connect with and build relationships with the students God has in mind.
With the commitments that have been made for financial support I am currently at 95% of a working budget. This is the minimum amount that I need to be on campus. With 2 – 4 more supporters at $30 - $50 per month I could reach 100% of a minimum budget. However my end goal over the next month is to gain additional supporters who would add another $20,000 to reach my ideal budget. This will ensure that I have all the resources I need to continue my ministry on campus.
If you are interested in supporting me please let me know or visit www.intervarsity.org click on donate and search for staff member “Todd Jerdon.” Also visit www.toddjerdon.weebly.com for my personal updates and blogs.
Thank you for being interested in following my ministry and supporting me in whatever way God leads.
It is official, I am heading for training in Madison, WI. I was accepted into the National Chapter Planter's Cohort with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. It is exciting starting a new ministry and I hope to paint you a picture (with words) so you can come along on this journey too.
So how do you start a new ministry somewhere, especially on a college campus? We begin with prayer. Infact it is prayer that led me (us) to begin this ministry in the first place. This isn't just my idea or InterVarsities idea, but God brought circumstances, resources and people all together for this very time. So we have a few people with a common vision to be witnesses to students at a specific campus. What next? More prayer, reading the word and looking for God's guidence. Our end goal is to be witnesses to students and faculty on campus and to share the gospel. Some people will be opposed, some will respond whole heartedly, it is not us who does the changing of hearts, but it is God's word and Spirit who work on the inner man. Lord have mercy and guide us as we continue to step out in faith. I'll continue to post on this topic.
1. The core students who will be the foundational leaders for the chapter. I have about 17 names currently.
2. Pray for an instructor on campus (who is going to be volunteering with us) to be strengthened in faith and to have a sharp mind for instruction.
3. Pray for the campus of Washtenaw, staff, faculty and students.
4. Pray for me as I prepare the vision, gather students, prayer team, donors and partners to work together for the glory of Jesus Christ!
Partners in ministry,
I have some exciting news for you regarding my fund development (FD) for the Chapter Plant at Washtenaw Community College. But first I have a specific request for you prayer warriors…Many of you are already praying for me and I thank you greatly! God has heard and is continuing to answer our prayers. What I am looking for now are people who will be on my Prayer Team. This means that I will give more updates and specific requests and hope to meet with some of you in person on a regular basis to pray. If this interests you please contact me.
Now for the exciting news!!!
IVCF’s Regional Director Fred Bailey and I sat down at the Regional Staff Conference to discuss my fund development. We identified some budget items that can be postponed until next year allowing this year’s budget to be reduced. I will still need those funds eventually, but I can do without until at least the end of 2010. With this new working budget, my most recent fund total brings me to 91%!!! Praise the Lord! I needed 90% to be accepted into the cohort by early June.
Please join me in praising the Lord for such a wonderful work that he has done through many of your prayers and generous gifts. You may not realize, but it generally takes 18 months to raise this amount of funding. God worked through our partnership to provide for this ministry in 5 months!
I will continue to work and pray through the summer to obtain the ideal budget, but this is a great relief and an amazing miracle! Please pray for and help me obtain the remaining amount that I need to fund the ministry to college students.
My current goals:
1). Obtain the last 9% ($3,877) by the end of next week for the revised budget.
2). Work toward the goal of 40% ($24,752 by the end of 2010) for the preferred budget.
With sincere thankfulness and gratitude!
“To him who by means of his power working in us is able to do so much more than we can ever ask for, or even think of: to God be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus for all time, forever and ever! Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21
Here you will find updates, thoughts, discussion and prayers for my life and ministry...