Hello, September!

Hey, hey, hey party disciples!

I cannot believe my first month as a campus missionary is over. I want to reiterate to my supporters how thankful I am for your belief in my vision for campus ministry. I could not be doing this without you. Thank you so much.

As soon as we got back from staff retreat, us apprentices started our classes with the often looked over and misunderstood Old Testament. We'll be covering the Old Testament through the end of the Fall. I'll be honest, I was a bit scared of what I would learn. I think what I was afraid of was that my understanding of who God is would be changed in a bad way. Would I learn that my good, good Father isn't as good as I thought he was? This is an insecurity I have had for a long time. Plot twist: in my basic, beginner's understanding of the Old Testament, I have learned that God was looking out for His people and that He is still good. God was about keeping people safe and meeting people's needs in a broken society. Can I get an Amen?

 Pictured: Ryan, Pedro, and the back of Hannah's head deep in Old Testament thought. 

When we weren't in class, all of our campus staff and leader teams were busy prepping for Welcome Week. Welcome Week is a pretty crucial time for our FOCUS teams. We spend time in prayer that God would prepare the hearts of the people we meet. We plan events to meet as many students as possible, and we become faithful for our many new friends and future disciples. I lost count of how many people I talked to, and was overwhelmed with joy with how many new faces flooded our events. I have already seen God working in these new students lives, and that was barely a week ago. I met an international student who said yes to studying the Bible with me, so cool!

The Cougar Den at the Preston Ridge Campus during Welcome Week

During Welcome Week, God further showed me my vision for  campus ministry by introducing me to so many students. Our returning Collin students showed spectacular ownership and initiative throughout the week. It was so cool to witness that. I thought I had seen it all by being involved with UNT FOCUS for several years. Last week was a reminder that there is a harvest field bigger than my understanding, and that each new person has a unique story, and that story is a testament to God's grace and purpose for their life. Praise God for His humble reminders.

We had so many students show up to our first Thursday Night Focus! Here are the Collin students at Canes, getting to know each other over Jesus, and Cane's sauce.

"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one." -C.S. Lewis

I want to give a shout out to my fellow Collin Staff. We were able to lean on each other, and God through the exciting chaos that has ensued since school has started. We had so many questions, we learned to communicate throughout these initial crucial stages of ministry, and learned the value of a well timed gif via text message.

A few prayer requests:

1. That our hearts stay humble, and patient. (FOCUS staff, and student leaders)
2. That our new students would feel welcomed into our community, and feel comfortable asking questions
3. I am still fundraising! I slowed down a bit this past month with the actual start of the apprenticeship,so if y'all could be in prayer that God would bring 5 more supporters in the next month.

Please let me know how I can be praying in your lives.



  1. Hey Shayla! I'm so excited to hear what you are learning from Old Testament class. I really enjoy studying the Old Testament because it reminds me that God's nature in constant and that He's always been interested in loving, saving, and blessing His people.

    Also, you are already starting a FOJ with an international student? Woohoo! We have met so many international students here at UTA, and I am praying that they would be interested in hearing about Jesus!

    Love you Shayla!


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