Summer Is Here And So Are Our Residents.

 

Slack for iOS Upload (2)My name is Joel Mancini. I was born in Dallas, Texas but proudly raised in Houston. After graduating from High School, I moved to Denton to attend The University of North Texas as a Music Major. For the first year I studied composition with a concentration in trombone performance. It was during that time that the Lord changed my heart and started guiding me towards vocational ministry. I spent last summer as a High School Counselor at Pine Cove where I met many of your kids! After finishing last summer, I transferred to Criswell College in Downtown Dallas where I am now a Junior studying Ministry and Church Planting.

The Lord saved me at the age of seven and I got baptized shortly after as a public profession of my faith. Within that same year my parents divorced causing a huge unaddressed burden on my life. My father always lived close by and I continued attending church, but by no means was I glorifying God with my life. It wasn’t until my sophomore year of High School when I was having lunch with an older family friend that God shook me to the core. This guy challenged my faith by asking intentional and personal questions about my relationship with God. He said that I had a decision to make. Would I take up the call that God gives to every believer to make Him and His Word known to the world? Or would I continue to ignore God and pursue my own interests? I left lunch that day changed. It was from that point on that I was motivated to serve Christ with my life.

The next two years of High School, God used me to lead two of my best friends to Christ. God became so real to me when I saw those friends completely transformed by the gospel. After graduating I had no plans to go into vocational ministry, but God had different plans! Here I am serving your students at The Height this summer. As I pray and meditate going into this summer season, I am reminded of Ezra and his willingness to follow God and serve his people–“For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.” Ezra 7:10 

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Hi, I am Marisa Mulloy and I am pumped to be back at The Heights! This is a place that has been so vital to my Spiritual journey and growth. I’ve been attending the Heights since I was in the 4th grade, but it wasn’t until Chi Alpha of my Sophomore year that I really understood the Gospel and what it meant to be God’s beloved. The years before this I struggled with trying to find my approval and worth in what people thought about me and how I was perceived by my boyfriend, my friends, my grades and anything else that I thought could give me some sort of identity.

This coming fall I will be a sophomore at Baylor University where I am studying International Business and Non-Profit Marketing. The Lord has really given me a passion for travel and social justice. I am not completely clear on what I will be doing after school, but I feel at peace in what my degree will teach me and how the Lord will be able to use that to further His Kingdom. Since I went to England with The Heights, the Lord has really put a special place in my heart for students.

I’m so excited to get to meet and love on some girls this summer and to be able to affirm that their identity and worth is found in the blood of Jesus only. More than anything, I hope to be able to help girls understand more deeply what it means to be a Christ-follower and to live their lives here with the perspective that they are missionaries on their own unique mission field. I’m so expectant for the Lord to move mightily in this ministry and through this Church!

The scripture I’ve been praying for this summer is Ephesians 3:17-19 which says: “I pray that you, being rooted and established in love together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” My hope is that this summer the students and I will be pushed into a new and deeper understanding of Christ’s love.

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Hey! I am Liz Wilson. I grew up going to The Heights and became a Christian when I was about 7, but it wasn’t until I went to beach camp with Heights Students that I decided to truly put my identity in Christ. Throughout high school I struggled with depression and anxiety. The student ministry staff and leaders helped me through the ups and downs of high school by continually pointing me back to Christ and the Bible. They gave me clear, practical examples of what it looks like to walk with Christ.

I go to Dallas Baptist University and I am a nursing major. I feel like the Lord has given me a passion for people and missions, and a fascination with how the human body works. I hope that one day I will be able to use my nursing degree to help others and in turn make God known. After I graduated from Allen High School, I took a gap year and served in England for a year. During that year, the Lord taught me a lot about himself and myself. He placed in my heart a new appreciation for working with students and showed me the importance of equipping younger generations.

Although the Lord has placed a passion for nursing in my heart, He has also given me a huge heart for students! I am so honored and blessed to be a part of The Heights Students staff for the summer. I am so excited to get to know the junior high students and hang out with them.

A verse that I have prayed over myself and the staff for this summer is found in 1 Peter 5:2. “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them- not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve.” I feel like the Lord has given me this verse to remind me that ministry is all about Himself and His kingdom and His glory. When our focus is on these things, we see more fruit, growth, and hunger for better understanding of the Gospel, which is ultimately what I want for your students.

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We are so excited to have these residents on our team for the summer! They are here to invest in and disciple your students. If you see them around, say hello!

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The Overview: June & July

JUNIOR HIGH

June 22: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Snyder Home (Find Address HERE)

June 26: Last Sunday, 5:30p-7:00p, Custer Park (Will meet at The Brick at 5:15p before we head over to Custer Park: 701 W Renner Rd, Richardson)

June 29: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Hanks Home (Find Address HERE)

July 6:  Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Johnson Home (Find Address HERE)

July 11-15: Launch Box: DFW, $175 per student, CLICK HERE for more info.

July 13:  NO WEDNESDAY ACTIVITIES (Launch Box)

July 20: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Snyder Home (Find Address HERE)

July 27: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Hanks Home (Find Address HERE)

July 31: Last Sunday, 5:30p-7:00p, The Brick

Bible Fellowship:  Junior High BF will continue to gather every Sunday morning at 9:15am or 10:50am in The Brick.

 

HIGH SCHOOL

June 22: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Fudge Home (Find Address HERE)

June 26: Last Sunday, 5:30p-7:00p, Custer Park (Will meet at The Brick at 5:15p before we head over to Custer Park: 701 W Renner Rd, Richardson)

June 29: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Ferrell Home (Find Address HERE)

July 6:  Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Snyder Home (Find Address HERE)

July 11-15: Launch Box: DFW, $175 per student, CLICK HERE for more info.

July 13:  NO WEDNESDAY ACTIVITIES (Launch Box)

July 16-22:  Boston Trip, CLICK HERE for more info.

July 20: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Ratcliff Home (Find Address HERE)

July 27: Poolside Bible Study, 6:00p-8:00p, Fudge Home (Find Address HERE)

July 31: Last Sunday, 5:30p-7:00p, The Brick

Bible Fellowship:  High School BF will continue to gather every Sunday morning at 9:15am in The Brick.

 

ADDITIONAL COMMUNICATION

You can stay better connected with The Heights Student Ministry through 4 other helpful resources.

  1. APP:  Download our iPhone app.  CLICK HERE
  2. SOCIAL:  Follow us through social media.  InstagramTwitterFacebook
  3. WEB:  Visit heightsstudents.org.  To view the calendar, CLICK HERE
  4. BLOG:  Stay resourced as parents of teenagers.  Read our Blog!  CLICK HERE 

 

Bo Behenna
Student Minister
The Heights Student Ministry
heightsstudents.org || @heightsstudents

#thsmcamp16: Dinner Rolls.

What a full day yesterday was! The morning looked pretty similar to the first morning, except today we added a new element to Morning Show called The Jar of Humility. The way this works is people can nominate anyone at camp to be put into The Jar of Humility. Once chosen, this person has to compete in a staff-chosen competition that we believe will humble this person. Yesterday morning Ryan Kelly, Colton Balch and Nathan Alvey were the nominees. Ryan had to make up a love poem on the spot, Colton had to arm wrestle an ex-marine and Nathan had to decode a Magic Photo. Needless to say, The Jar of Humility lived up to its name and put these gentlemen in their places. And the crowd may have enjoy watching!IMG_7292

For our teaching time in the morning, we got to hear from our worship band Unhindered. We unpacked these questions in our groups—1) Have you ever felt like God is trying to say something and you weren’t listening? 2) Where do you turn when you’re facing something difficult? 3) What is something you feel like the Holy Spirit is teaching you this week?

IMG_7297The rest of the day was filled with more Kadoku Games, small group Bible study and free time fun! Today in small groups they were in Acts 13, talking about the Spirit’s role in burdening us and stirring our hearts to speak to us and use us in ministry of the Kingdom. It’s been incredible to watch the community that is being built amongst the groups and to hear the depth of questions that are being asked. There have been many “lightbulb moments” across the board today, where the Spirit is bringing realizations to about who He is and how He works to students!IMG_7307IMG_7377

IMG_7354IMG_7394Last year we all had this thing for these Carolina Creek dinner rolls. And its kind of become a big deal for us. We have a chant and everything. We have talked about and looked forward to enjoying the Carolina Creek dinner rolls all year. And tonight was THE night! They made dinner rolls. The joy was tangible. I’ve never seen people consume bread that quickly. I sat across from an 8th grade girl and watched her tear up and stare lovingly at her roll (you can’t make this stuff up, folks). It was a worshipful dinner.

IMG_7336As we moved into our evening of worship, we spent some time worshipping the Lord through song and then being led through a responsive reading of Psalm 130. One thing we want students to see is that the Spirit speaks to us in many ways, and one primary way is through God’s Word. This was a good time of slowing down to speak the Word of God over the room and over each other as we prepared to be ushered through the teaching of the Word.

Neil led us through 1 Thessalonians 1:2-10 tonight. We’ve spent the past day or so honing in on what it looks like to be full of the Spirit. Tonight as Neil was teaching, he wanted us to see that fullness is the by-product, not the goal. Fullness comes from being thankful, remembering that you’re remembered, practicing certainty, experiencing community, and knowing theology.

Tonight’s questions were—

  • At this point in your life what is the one thing you’re most thankful for?
  • What are three things that you’ll never change your mind about?
  • What evidence do you point to that makes you know you are a Christian?
  • What motivates you to obedience?

After worship last night, we enjoyed our last Late Night–Hoopcoming. You might be asking what is Hoopcoming?! Great question! We have a tradition at camp called THSM Hoops. This is a basketball game between the Heights Students staff and students. All of us dressed up like basketball players and/or tacky prom. We ate ice cream sundaes and danced and watched the game. It was an intense game, but the Heights Students staff pull out the victory in the last few minutes!

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It’s our last full day, which is a little surreal. But we are continuing to pray that the Spirit will open our ears and eyes to hear and see what He desires us to through every aspect of today. Join us! Don’t miss out on the last evening of Livestream tonight!

 

#thsmcamp16: Kadoku Games

In the past we’ve always done recreation. Recreation is great and all, but you can find recreation anywhere you go. We have scratched recreation and have ushered in the Kadoku Games. Kadoku Games are unique to The Heights and is a combo of challenge games and traditional games. This year is Olympics themed, where each team is representing countries around the world. Here are some photos from the first day of Kadoku Games–

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IMG_7275As you can tell, Kadoku Games were intense and awesome today!

After Kadoku Games, students got to spend their afternoon enjoying Carolina Creek’s free time options like canoeing, swimming in the pool, tubing at the cable park, ziplining, etc. It was a great bonding time for all of us and much fun was had by all (even those that chose to just take a nap 🙂 ).

Tonight during our evening worship, we were taught a new song by Unhindered called “Whisper.” These lyrics became our prayer as we headed into worship through teaching of the Word.

“Jesus, when you speak to me, I hope I’m listening to you. Whisper, whisper, whisper in my ear. Tell me words I thought I’d never hear. Show me, show me, show me what you see. Illuminate what’s right in front of me.”

We dove into Ephesians 3:14-21 tonight, looking at what it looks like to move from potential to power. When it comes to living a Spirit-filled life, we often have a lot of knowledge and potential, but haven’t truly known or experienced the power of the Spirit. Neil highlighted five words from these verses and broke those down further for us–perspective, power, personal, love, and fullness.

These were the questions from his teachings that drove our small group discussions afterwards–

  • When you pray, what’s the main reason you pray?
  • What is the perspective through which you see God?
  • When’s the last time you sensed the power of God come out of you? Do you think that’s possible?
  • Does Christ dwell in your heart?
  • Who right now is helping you understand what you’re created for?
  • Do you comprehend or do you know the love of God?
  • When’s the last time you did something spiritually that made other people feel uncomfortable?
  • If your life were a gas gauge, where would you fall on the meter right now? What would life be like if you were full?

The coolest thing I (Mollie) am seeing happen here is glimpses of students beginning to see God and His Spirit more clearly for who they really are. And, in turn, they are beginning to sense a little bit more of how we relate to them in our daily lives. Students’ understanding of the gospel and the Spirit are being spurned on and challenged. The Spirit is meeting us exactly where we are, and showing us that this really isn’t about us; it’s all about Him. Knowing Him and enjoying Him and moving from that to usher in the Kingdom where our feet fall.

The beautiful thing the Lord is teaching me about the Spirit is that He moves through the power of the Spirit to get done what only He can get done in every single heart and life, all for the sake of His glory. And we are praying to that end as we head into the next few days of camp! Tune in tomorrow morning to catch our Morning Show.

#thsmcamp16: Living Like Chocolate Milk

Good morning from Carolina Creek!!

I think I can speak for all of us when I say we crashed last night (some earlier than others) after a full day of travel and camp fun. I hope that some of you were able to tune into the Livestream of our first service. It was a little spotty due to a shaky wifi connection. Have no fear, we made some purchases last night that will hopefully fix that for the rest of our services!

We promised to give you guys a recap of the questions from each sermon so that you can wrestle through them yourselves and better follow up with your student(s). We camped out in John 16:4-11, unpacking the three main things Jesus promised the Holy Spirit will convict us of–sin, righteousness and judgement. Here are the questions we spent time fleshing out after the service.

  1. What sin is the Holy Spirit convicting you of these days?
  2. Do you think it is possible for sin to no longer be a part of the equation for you?
  3. Do you spend time trying to maintain your relationship with God or trying to enjoy it? What do you do to enjoy God?
  4. Do you have any idea how righteous you are?
  5. Of those three (sin, righteousness, judgement), which one do you most need the Holy Spirit to talk to you about this week?

The Spirit is at work. Students are hungry. Leaders are encouraged. Small groups are having vulnerable conversations. We are continually expectant. Last night as we sang, we prayed this “consume us with your majesty.” Join us in praying that would be true for each and everyone of us.

And last night ended with a splash with our annual belly flop competition. A seventh grade lady, Katie Heheman, took home the prize (which so happened to be an inflatable donut)!

This morning is rocking and rolling! We had breakfast and morning devo time. The leaders got to spend time together preparing to lead the first small group session today. Then we all came into the first morning show. This year we are mixing things up for morning show. Instead of chairs in rows, each group has a carpet square that they are sitting around in a huddle. Morning show had a few fun elements this morning–

  • Noise control game–Junior Highers won (no surprise!)
  • Creek Feud–think Family Feud, but camp style with consequences (like doing a cheer or singing a Disney song)
  • Camp Mail–funny or embarrassing stories of happenings around camp. There are three birthdays happening here today! Don’t worry, we made them feel very loved and celebrated.
  • Highlight video of the day before

And after all of this, Neil led us through some time thinking on and discussing the Word of God. He started with an object lesson. He had a pitcher of milk. The milk represented those without Christ. Then he poured a whole bottle of chocolate syrup into the pitcher. This milk with chocolate syrup settled in the bottom represented those who believe in Jesus, but aren’t walking in the power of the Spirit. Then he mixed it all up, turning it into chocolate milk. This represented life lived in the fullness of the Spirit. When we walk in the power of the Spirit, we get to live in a way that makes people say, “I want some of that.”

We honed in on Romans 8 after this and got to discuss some questions in our groups. These questions were–

  1. What does it mean to set your mind on the Spirit?
  2. Looking at the chocolate milk analogy, which one best represents your life right now?
  3. As far as the Spirit goes, do you experience the power that the Bible talks about in your life?

Gears were turning as groups dove into these questions. Neil brought it back together and went deeper into some of these questions then we High School headed to Kadoku Games: Olympic Challenge and Junior High went to small group time. After lunch, they will swap! There are many great things in store for today and we are excited for how the Lord is going to move! We will get you an evening update tonight.

Join us in praying that we will enjoy God together today!

#thsmcamp16: Camp is HERE!


This day has been long anticipated for many and now it has finally arrived: Camp 2016 has begun. Everyone came to the church this morning to check-in. We rolled out of the church at around 11AM, hitting the road for Carolina Creek. Half of us got the pleasure of hanging out with our friend Buc-ee during our lunch stop (don’t worry, the other half will get the same joy on the trip home). We arrived to Carolina Creek at around 3:00pm. Everyone was full of excitement and anticipation to unload the buses and let the real fun begin.

Upon arrival, students met their groups and small group leaders for the week. After connecting, each group made their way to their cabin to get settled in and to have some downtime before dinner and their first small group gathering.

Side note here: We are really excited about the small group leaders that the Lord has brought us for this week!! Of our 23 small group leaders, 17 of them are lay leaders that serve in the student ministry on a weekly basis. These people have volunteered their week to continue discipling the students they have been building relationships with all year. I am so expectant for how the Lord is going to bless their faithfulness. The other leaders are staff and college leaders that we know and love. We are equally excited for their investment this week! Join me in praying for the Lord to give them favor and to fill them up with the words to speak to point students to the gospel.

We are about to head into worship, which you can tune into via Livestream by clicking here. All of our services will be Livestreamed this week so that you can sit under the same teaching that your student(s) is. Watching along with the services will hopefully set you up for continued discipleship moments when your student arrives home! This week we are focusing on the Holy Spirit, asking God to help us better understand who He is and what it looks like for us to be obedient to the Spirit. Join me and praying that God would do just that in each and every heart this week.

Each night after worship all the small groups will reconvene and unpack questions that Neil brings up as he is teaching in large group gathering. This is a great space for students to flesh out what the Spirit is stirring in them. These times are usually some of the most impactful moments during camp. We will be posting these questions each evening for you to see and even wrestle through yourself!

As our first night draws to a close, what better way to wrap up than with a big pool party!? Praise the Lord for having fun together and for moments of building community through shared experience! It’s been a great first day. Thank you for your prayers, let’s keep asking the Lord to move!