Well folks, here we are starting this blog up again but this time around the purpose has shifted a bit. As staff with Ride Nature living on support, we have been encouraged to be really intentional with our supporters. It will be our goal to keep you informed about our projects, prayer requests, praise reports and growth on a monthly basis. I will try the blog and in the least send out a monthly email.
After many set backs, we finally set sail towards Naples, FL on April 26th. Our home on wheels was by no means finished, but done enough for us to live in it while finishing up some final touches. So, we drove our 46ft rig over 1,500 miles down to the southern gulf coast of sunny FL. Praise God for His protection causing our vehicle to be mechanically sound the whole trip down!
We stopped for a night in NW AR to reconnect with family and friends and then continued on our way down south. Then, we drove until we started getting sleepy and pulled over into a Walmart parking lot and joined all the semis for the night. We made one more pit stop in Orlando to see some friends before arriving in Naples on May 1st.
The Ride Nature team had already been hard at work all day preparing for their annual fundraising banquet the following night. The banquet was a success with over 200 attendees! Ride Nature brought in Vic Murphy, a pro BMX rider and Christian speaker, as the guest speaker. Vic stayed the rest of the weekend to hang out and share wisdom with the Ride Nature team. After the whirlwind weekend, we settled into a little bit of a normal routine. Monday mornings we have a team bible study on the beach to fix our eyes on Christ and truth first thing starting our week. Then later in the week, the staff meets together to discuss the book The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. This book is world rocking and is definitely challenging our views on discipleship and what Christ has really called us to. A couple weeks ago we got to have our first booth experience. Harley Davidson called us to come be a part of a booth fair that seemed to be aimed at networking local businesses. Of course we didn’t know this until we got there and didn’t have enough brochures and business cards to go around, but all and all, we got to share about Ride Nature’s mission and hopefully make some good potential contacts. On a weekly basis, Ride Nature is involved with local outreach at 3 skateparks and they are looking to double that number this summer. Their outreach involves developing relationships with the kids that are there skating, discipling them and inviting them to pause their skate session to join a bible study.
Also, throughout the week we go into the office 3-5 times a week. We have been learning a lot about the organization and the many ways they use to spread the gospel. Here are just a few: local outreach at the skate parks, producing and premiering evangelistic films, online Christian magazine, “surf sisters” bible studies, intern discipleship program, local missions trips, and international missions trips. They also have online apparel and gear they sell as a means to support the ministry. A big prayer request and vision for Ride Nature is to move out of the office we have in a church into a bigger free-standing space. There is a building we are looking at that would be a perfect location for headquarters. This building would house offices, a mini skatepark, event concert venue and coffee shop. Having a place like this would allow the ministry to do outreach by opening up a safe Christian environment for local youth to come. It would also hopefully allow Ride Nature to have a source of income coming in to do more outreach both locally and internationally. Please keep this vision in your prayers. The Lord has been opening a lot of doors and currently, we are seeking out local churches to partner with us and give monthly towards the building’s rent.
On another note, Ethan and I are weekly corresponding with missionaries all over the world to pray for them and hear their needs and potential mission trip projects.
The current trips that are on the calendar are:
Costa Rica 5/30-6/6, 8/1-8/15 / the Philippines 9/20-10/3 / and possibly India 10/4-10/17
On the calendar for mid-June to mid-July, Ethan and I will be hitting the road in the US for a summer music tour. We will be putting up a booth at a few Christian music festivals to share about the ministry and spread the word about our upcoming short term mission trips.
This first month has been a great introduction into our roles and gaining a better understanding of the mission and vision of Ride Nature. We have been convicted, especially now working in ministry, that we need to be continually submitting our endeavors and motives daily to the Lord. Learning to constantly be abiding in Him and let all of our actions flow out of that abidance. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
Prayer requests for us this month include:
Our 1st trip to Costa Rica (5/30-6/6). We will be meeting with several missionaries and serving along side them in their ministry. Also, keep our safety in your prayers as we rent a car to drive across the country and have our first surfing experience.
Monthly support. We are up to $945 in monthly support. Praise God, He provided a place for us to park our RV for free until November. Sanctuary RV Park is our biggest supporter!! However, with the expense of starting up medical coverage and the looming question of where we will live after November, our goal is to increase our monthly support by at least another $1,000. We are also praying about applying to start substitute teaching in the fall. That would be perfect for us because you dictate your own schedule and work as little or as much as you want.
Housing after November. As I mentioned, the RV park is letting us stay for free until November ($1200 of free rent). However, November-March is busy season and the park is already fully booked during those months. Ethan and I are totally open to whatever opportunity the Lord brings about (an apartment, guest house, another place to park the RV) .
A church body. This will be our first time of really starting from scratch in search of a church home (in Korea our options we very limited). This is a process we are not looking forward to, just because our first reaction is to nit-pick churches and look for a church that fits “our style.” Our prayer is that we would not just choose a church to serve us but that we would be sensitive to where God would have us serve.
Ride Nature Headquarters. The Lord is faithful and we know that He will “meet all our needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 As a Ride Nature team, we are praying that our ministry would be a worthy cause, and that local churches would come alongside us in our vision for a building.
Thank you all for your prayers and monthly support that allow us continue working to spread God’s kingdom. Please feel free to share your prayer requests with us! Also, we would love for any of you to join us on a mission trip and get to experience first hand the ministry you are supporting.
We pray for Christ’s joy and peace to be present and evident in your lives!
“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ- to the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-11
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