Posted by: Jonathan Koloff | July 5, 2009

July Newsletter

It is hard to believe that I have already been here in Louisville for over a month. The time here has flown by. In about a month and a half I will be back at Johnson. Even though it is going so fast, I am absolutely enjoying my time here, and God is teaching me so much.

This past week, I was able to attend the North American Christian Convention. It was so great to see so many of my friends and family. It was such a good time. I also had the great opportunity to help lead worship during the morning main sessions. That was an amazing experience and fun to be a part of. The NACC was a great week, and God did a lot of awesome things. I am so thankful that I was able to be a part of such a wonderful convention.

Another good part about my time here is being involved with the Sojourn Church community. Sojourn is an incredible church. It has been good to get to know a lot of people and fellowship with people my age here in Louisville. The church is doing a lot in the community and is very intentional about reaching out to the neighborhood in which they live. This is something that has been very convicting to me. I need to be intentional about being Christ to those who are around me on a daily basis no matter where I happen to be living. Being here in Louisville has made me begin to really think about living in an urban setting in the future.

I also have been able to get to know the residents here at Jeff Street a lot better. It has been challenging to do so at times, but ultimately has been a great blessing. Getting to know these guys and being able to relate to them was one of my biggest fears coming into the summer. But honestly, that has been one of the easiest things for me to accomplish in my time here so far. God is incredible. He has enabled me to get past my fears and insecurities and truly be able to reach out and relate to the residents. I Corinthians 12: 9-10 says, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” God has certainly been using me despite my weaknesses.

One of the best ways to get to know the residents is to spend time in the “butt hut.” The “butt hut” is an awning type shelter behind the Jeff Street building. Most of the residents spend a lot of time out there so that they can smoke. I have had a lot of good conversations with the men, and have just been able to hang out with them. One afternoon I spent three hours out there. These men are so different from me, but in so many ways we are the same. It has been such a blessing to get to know the residents and be a positive influence in their lives.

I am excited to see what else God has in store for me the rest of the summer. He has already blown me away so many times. He continues to convict me about what we allow to continue to go on in our own country and communities. The HOPE team is currently reading the book, Beyond Charity, by John Perkins. The book is a call for Christian community development. It has challenged me to move beyond simply enabling people to truly seeking development and permanent change.

Thanks again to all of you for your generous support. It has enabled me to serve here without worrying about money at all. That is such a blessing. I ask that you would continue to pray for me. I am so thankful for all of your prayers.

Thanks again for all you are doing for the Kingdom. It has certainly not gone unnoticed.

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