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Unexpected Father

“As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations.” Genesis 17:4

This past Thursday, I had the privilege of leading a session at Kristfest helping young men navigate from boyhood to manhood.

I’ve been excited about the session ever since I was asked to lead it back in April.

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In It All

This year, I experienced a new Czech first while at Kristfest.

I got sick.
Like, really, really sick.

We still don’t know what disease swept through the camp, but early Tuesday morning, over 30 people found themselves incredibly sick.

Diarrhea.
Vomitting.
Whole body aches.

Four people even went to the hospital.

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Known By Name

This year during our week of outreaches in Cesky Tesin, I was struck by the number of kids from the community who knew my name.

We would walk into an event, and all I would hear was a resounding Jason from the younger kids.

I didn’t know many of them – probably only talked to them a few times, led an event they participated in, or gave them a hi-five sometime during a past trip – but they knew me, and made sure to say Hello, Jason every time they saw me.

It was a weird feeling.

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Blessing Behind the Fear

Fear. It’s been an attractive factor of our trip this year.

Every night during our time of outreaches, we’ve put various young people through a number of competitions in fear factor-ish style.

And it’s been great.

Of all the events we’ve done – be it workshops, community dinners, speed dating, and even our showcase – the fear factor events we planned were the most attractive.

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Wake Within Me

Every year as we get ready to head to Czech, I tend to get a single song stuck in my head. It’s a song I end up playing over and over again. A song I whistle and hum to myself. A song that makes me pray harder – and begin to cry – about what God wants to do.

This year, that song was Wake.

And God has been using it to stir within all of our hearts.

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Praying for the Czech Trip

In a few short days, the Czech mission team will board a plane and begin our journey to what will become a very life-changing trip.

God is going to do something BIG.

Now more than ever, we need your help! We know God is going to show up and change lives on this trip, which means: we need prayer!

If you are interested in praying for our team while we are ministering in the Czech Republic, you will find a list of prayer requests below, as well as a downloadable copy of our itinerary. Unless marked, all times are recorded in Czech time – 7 hours ahead of Central Standard Time.

Prayer Requests:

  • Safe travels to and from the Czech Republic (including driving, plane flights, bus and train rides)
  • Health for every team member – both American and Czech
  • Ability to adjust to the time difference quickly and easily
  • God’s presence every time our team members speak or pray
  • Hearts of the Czech youth and young adults to be turned towards Christ
  • Lives to be changed
  • Young people showing up to our outreaches and retreat
  • Distractions and hinderances from youth coming to our events or retreat to be destroyed
  • Favor on our team as we minister to people
  • Czech young people to experience the presence and power of God
  • Courage and boldness to step out in faith and do whatever God asks of us
  • Young people to encounter God during our Encounter Retreat
  • God’s Spirit to guide us every day
  • Fear to be overcome
  • Young people to experience a new level of hope

Itinerary:

You can download a PDF copy of our trip itinerary by clicking the link below.

[button href=”http://igniteyourcampus.com/new/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Czech-2014-Itinerary.pdf” align=”left” bg_color=”#000034″ text_color=”#ffffff”]Czech Itinerary[/button]

Updates:

Periodically throughout the trip, our team will post updates on the Ignite blog. During the last week of the trip, while at KristFest, there won’t be any updates as the team won’t have access to internet. Click the button below to see all updates pertaining to the Czech 2014 mission trip:

[button href=”http://www.igniteyourcampus.com/tag/czech-2014″ align=”left” bg_color=”#000034″ text_color=”#ffffff”]Czech Updates[/button]

 

 

Making Disciples

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations…”  Matthew 28:19

A few weeks ago, I received one of the greatest compliments about Ignite.

I was chatting with one of the leaders of Kristfest – the national youth camp we will help with during our trip to Czech – and he was explaining why my team was chosen to lead the sessions we will lead.

You see, this year’s theme is partly on discipleship, and what it means to be a true disciple of Christ. Throughout the week, our team will lead all the breakout sessions related to discipleship.

The reason? Apparently even in Czech, Ignite is known as a ministry that makes disciples.

I was humbled.

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Miracle Working God

Every year as we solidify the team that will give up two weeks of their summer to invest in the lives of young people in the Czech Republic, I give them a warning and a promise.

God will stretch your faith and you will see Him perform miracles.

This year’s trip has already been no different.

Up until a few weeks ago, the team was struggling to believe God would come through financially. Donations were down, plane ticket prices were up, and it was discouraging to see week after week only a few hundred dollars come in, when we needed a few thousand.

The deadline to purchase our plane tickets was quickly approaching, and we only had the money to purchase one ticket, when we needed four — it was getting very discouraging.

But God was setting us up for something amazing.

Our team pushed through in prayer, asking God to open doors to speak in churches and have conversations with family and friends. Two weeks ago, we were sitting at needing $6,000 to buy our plane tickets.

In one week, over $6,000 came in.

God performed a miracle.

We are happy and excited to announce that as of Saturday, April 26, we purchased plane tickets for all four team members!! This always gives a sense of confidence among the team members — we really are going.

We would like to thank all of you who have prayed for and donated towards this year’s trip to the Czech Republic. Because of your overwhelming generosity, we have been able to purchase the plane tickets and finalize some details of the trip.

The stretching isn’t over yet, though. While we are rejoicing in the over $6,000 God gave us in a week, the team as a whole still needs $2,000 total to cover outreaches, food, and lodging.

If you have been considering donating to the trip, there is still a need! We ask that you pray about how you can help support our team as we reach out to youth in the most atheistic country in the world.

Partner with Us

Our team still has a total of $2,000 to raise to cover food, lodging, and outreach supplies. Please pray about partnering with us to reach young people in the Czech Republic with the gospel of Christ. Click the button below to make a secure, online, tax-deductible donation today!

[button href=”https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=RVPS973DUEJ7J” align=”center” bg_color=”#000034″ text_color=”#ffffff”]Donate[/button]

Photo Credit: Angelo DeSantis (Creative Commons)

 

 

God Ideas

Every time Ignite USA takes a trip to the Czech Republic, we pray for God ideas. We don’t want good ideas — they may sound nice, but ultimately can be ineffective. We want God ideas — those that will draw young people in, give our team the opportunity to build relationship and speak into their lives, and bring about the best possible change in people’s lives.

God ideas.

Two weekends ago, the mission team had a Skype call with our Ignite Cesky Tesin leaders to talk about outreaches and the 3 day retreat we will lead, and we had some God ideas. We are still working out the specific details, but here are some of the ideas we have for the outreaches during our trip:

  1. Late afternoon workshops. These workshops will be fun and focused around an activity — fashion, dance, and sports — to draw young people in and build relationship with them. We are starting the workshops at 4pm, later than in years past, to allow those who work to make it.
  2. Dinner Cookout. Every night after the workshops, youth will stick around for dinner — cookout style. We’ll grill up some sausages, be social, and have the opportunity to talk and pray with young people.
  3. Evening events. Our evening events will combine a fun activity with a message and prayer. Each night will have a different event that leads into the message topic. They include:
    • Speed Dating / Relationships Talk. Youth will do a friendship version of speed dating, allowing them to get to know each other and us in a quick, and fun, way. We will follow up the activity with a talk on relationships.
    • Bartending / Addictions Talk. No, we aren’t going to teach them to mix alcoholic drinks, but one of our friends in Czech will do a fun non-alcoholic drink mixing. It’s very popular with youth in Czech right now. We will follow up the activity with a talk on addictions and being set free.
    • Fear Factor / Resisting Temptation Talk. The American team is putting together a somewhat tamed down version of Fear Factor, and youth will compete for some pretty nice prizes. We will follow up the activity with a talk on resisting temptation.

During the day, we will head to the town square and invite people to the events. We may also hold small leadership training sessions for the Ignite Cesky Tesin group. We are still praying for God’s ideas for our mornings and afternoons.

We invite you to be praying with us as we continue to plan the outreaches and youth retreat we will lead while in Czech. We know God wants to do something HUGE while we are there, and need His leading to make it as powerful as possible.

Partner with Us

Our team still has a total of $13,000 to raise to make this trip a reality. Please pray about partnering with us to reach young people in the Czech Republic with the gospel of Christ. Click the button below to make a secure, online, tax-deductible donation today!

[button href=”https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=RVPS973DUEJ7J” align=”center” bg_color=”#000034″ text_color=”#ffffff”]Donate[/button]

Background photo credit: innoxiuss via photopin cc

 

 

Czech Trip Planning Underway

Planning for our annual trip to the Czech Republic this July is underway!

This past weekend, our Ignite Czech leadership team met with trip leader Jason Vana to begin talking through ideas for the trip, including outreaches, retreat, and focus of our time there.

While this was only the preliminary meeting, and we are still praying and thinking about specific details, the goal is to go to the next level in our impact on this year’s trip. Some ideas include: Read more