Merry Christmas! Can I say that again, "MERRY CHRISTMAS!" Feels so good to say that among the many "Happy Holidays" and "Seasons Greetings", doesn't it? Christmas is still a national holiday in this country and I, for one, am excited to celebrate what this season is all about, the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Can I get an "Amen?"
I am so grateful for the privilege of updating all of you on what God is doing in our public schools each month and this month is no exception. This time, however, I am not sure I can put in writing the excitement and hope that I feel as I sit down to send our December update. Let me start with…GOD IS SO GOOD! These last weeks I am more overwhelmed than usual (and that says a lot) by what I am seeing play out in our schools. Where do I start? Will you take the time to read this update? You will be encouraged!
1 - 3rd Annual Compass Educator Breakfast - November 21, 9-11am - Grace Church Commons
Our largest event of the year continues to grow. Educators are desperate to connect with other believers and be equipped to live out their calling within their school. God is so faithful! He is raising up an army of missionaries prepared to be used for His purposes and for His glory on our school campuses. Check out the highlights from our morning together:
198 area educators attended (up from 140 last year)
43 districts represented (up from 30 last year)
4 universities and one community college represented (exciting new partnerships are forming with Education Departments)
99 first time attendees (Educators are inviting colleagues)
- Four powerful educator testimonies shared
- Educators stood shoulder to shoulder in worship
- Notes of encouragement/thanks written by students were distributed to each educator
- "I am fearfully and wonderfully made" classroom posters were gifted to educators
- "Shining for Jesus at School" bracelets handed out
- All joined in prayer for our schools and were commissioned out onto their mission fields
Each educator was challenged to listen for God's Call to Action during a short time of silence. Look at the FRUIT of the morning as we compiled responses!! PTL!
54 committed to dedicated prayer for students and colleagues
41 committed to going deeper in their relationships in order to share Christ's love in an authentic, meaningful way
37 committed to praying for and taking opportunities to share the gospel in their schools
16 committed to starting staff prayer groups in their schools
13 committed to starting Good News Clubs in their schools for K-6 students
2 indicated interest in starting a Compass Ministry in their church
2-Parents want to get more involved in impacting the culture of our schools! We had over 20 parents and students step up to serve our teachers at the breakfast. They were INSPIRED by these educators and want to come alongside them on the mission field of the public schools. A "think tank" meeting to dig deeper into our role as public school parents has been scheduled for Monday, December 14th, 7-9pm at Grace Church, M211. We will come together as parents to pray, share what God is doing in our schools, identify the challenges we are facing and brainstorm where God may be leading us as we go forward. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to attend. More than ever before Christians need to play a role impacting the culture of our schools! Come if you can!
3-Good News Clubs are starting in schools all over the metro! Good News Clubs, a ministry of Child Evangelism Fellowship, are elementary school student bible studies held after school. Students, with parental permission, meet in classrooms and are led by parents and teachers as they study God's Word, pray and enjoy Christian fellowship. Pray for this effort! This ministry is critical as it gets kids comfortable, from an early age, making their Christian faith a part of their school day. The gospel is shared weekly in these schools and it is open to any who have parental permission. It allows kids to not only grow closer to God along with their classmates but gives them the opportunity to invite friends who may not have the opportunity to go to church.
4-God has increased our territory (1 Chron 4:10)! Since the breakfast in November we have had two individuals contact us about starting a Compass Ministry in their church. One individual is in Southern CA and the other attends a church in KY. Along with the Northern CO Compass that started this fall, we are convinced that God does not want this vision to be contained to the MSP area. He has bigger plans to equip churches to acknowledge and support the mission field of the public schools! Praise the Lord! Pray for us as we work diligently to help these folks develop a public school ministry that is relevant and impactful in their area of the country.
After a major overhaul of our roster we are blessed to discover that Compass has connected a community of 422 area Christian educators! This is unprecedented. Please pray for wisdom for us as we comprehend this blessing but also this responsibility.
5-We have a great gift idea for the Christian educators in your life! Finn Laursen, Director of Christian Educators Association, and a dear friend to Compass, has written a book specifically for Christian educators called to the public schools, "Standing on the Word." Compass has a supply of books we can sell to you for the discounted rate of $10 or you can access them for a little extra at http://www.amazon.com/Standing-Word-Finn-Laursen/dp/1597553190/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1449429872&sr=1-1&keywords=finn+laursen. If you would like a book from Compass contact Norene Shephard at Norene.email@example.com and she will coordinate how to get it to you! Bless those special teachers with this great book!
As you make decisions regarding your year end giving, will you prayerfully consider supporting Compass? Contributions can be made to us through Christian Educators Association via our website, www.compasslink.org. Click the "donate" button in the upper right hand corner of our homepage and specify Compass Ministry in the message section. Thank you!
Aren't you encouraged? Thank you for your support of this ministry! Please pray for us and consider joining our leadership team! "The Harvest is plentiful but the workers are few…"
For His Glory!
The Compass Team
Facebook - "Compass-Navigating Public Education"