Baptism at Our OYC Site in Bend, Oregon!

A new brother was baptized at one of our OYC site in Oregon! Jaxson is a sophomore and distance-runner at the University of Oregon (go Ducks!). He studied the Bible with three brothers (Daniel, Joey and Alex) who all went on an OYC and decided to stay. We are grateful for the faithfulness of these brothers.

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. (1 Corinthians 9:24)

Have You Been with Jesus?

In the Great Commission Jesus gives us the precious promise that He will “be with us surely to the end of the age.” Him being with us gives us the assurance that He will protect us, watch over us, that He will work with and for us and that His power is with us.

While this promise is comforting and empowering, we also need to ask ourselves: are we with Jesus? We can be assured that Jesus is with us, because it is His promise. Yet often times we feel afraid or insecure because we haven’t been with Jesus.

The effects of being with Jesus are astounding. If we seek Jesus, not just in our daily quiet times with the Lord, but also in imitating His life, our lives will be full of power. It will not matter what kind of background we come from or how old we are or what kind of weaknesses we have. Our lives will have His miraculous mountain-moving aurora.

The Sanhedrin experienced this first hand when they tried to intimidate the early disciples to stop them from sharing the gospel.

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.

The Sanhedrin were surprised by Peter and John. They had come from Galilee, a small, no-name town in Israel. They had no training in the law, nor did they accomplish any great things. Despite this Peter and John were a force to be reckoned with. They boldly went before the Sanhedrin and challenged the rulers, elders and teachers of the law.

When facing a big faith decision, like considering going on a One Year Challenge, we can take comfort that Jesus is with us. But can we say that in our decision making we have been with Jesus?

In considering going on a One Year Challenge, we can ask ourselves two questions.

  1. Have we been with Jesus?

    Not only is this asking “have you had a quiet time today?”, it’s also asking if we have consulted God in our decision making. Before making any big decisions have you prayed to God about it? We should not only consult God in our decision making, we should also try to capture His heart for our situation.

  2. Are we going where Jesus is going? We can not be with Jesus where Jesus is not. While this may sound obvious at first, it has a deeper meaning. Its important to remind ourselves that Jesus is not going to be equally concerned with every single part of our lives. There are some things that Jesus cares about more than others. Jesus cares more about your holiness and Great Commission than whether you’ll eat spaghetti or steak for dinner tonight. A lot of times we can flip those concerns and care more about the trivial things. Being concerned about what Jesus is concerned about. Being willing to go where Jesus has gone. That is what it means to be with Jesus and to go where Jesus will go. In the Great Commission Jesus says that He will go to all the nations. Will you go too?

Have you been with Jesus? Are you willing to go where Jesus will go? Start your journey with Him today by going to

What We’re Reading Today

From N.T. Wright’s Surprised By Hope:

The power of the gospel lies not in the offer of a new spirituality or religious experience, not in the threat of hellfire…which can be removed if only the hearer checks this box, says this prayer, raises a hand, or whatever, but in the powerful announcement that God is God, that Jesus is Lord, that the powers of evil have been defeated, that God’s new world has begun.

Can You Be Sure You Have a Calling?

David Sils asks if its even possible for us to know if we are called to the mission.

Are you sure you have a missionary call? Even some missionaries say, “I don’t need a call, I have a verse,” or as Jim Elliot famously quipped, “You don’t need a call, you need a kick in the pants.” Many believe that the only biblical missionary call necessary is the Great Commission, and we have all received it. They would argue for the great global need for the gospel. They rightly remind us that over a third of the world’s population has no access to it.

Read the whole thing.

Your Wife Will Be Imperfect

Encouragement from Christianity Today to single men considering marriage: remember, you will marry an imperfect person.

To the single men who are considering marriage and feeling hesitant, I issue this invitation from Elisabeth Elliot’s Let Me Be a Woman: You do not marry a ministry partner; you marry a person. You do not marry someone like another man’s wife; you marry your wife. You do not marry someone like you; you marry a unique woman. And you do not marry someone perfect, you marry a sinner.

Read the whole thing.