GLORIFYING GOD BY MAKING DISCIPLES
(1 Corinthians 10:31, Matthew 28:19-20)
First Baptist Church, Emery, SD
The third reason that we exist is to Serve. Service is a very important aspect of being a follower of Jesus Christ. It is made clear in the Scriptures that we must follow Christ's example and serve others. We also believe that in order to understand how to serve throughout our lives, we must witness others serving and have an example to follow. At Encounter, we aim to help our students serve those who are in need in and around our community. A couple examples of service projects that we have done in the past are: Playing bingo with the senior citizens at the Diamond Care Center in Bridgewater, sorting clothes and cleaning at the Volunteers of America Thrift Store in Sioux Falls, and serving at the Banquet (similar to a food bank/shelter) in Sioux Falls.
We also take summer trips during most summers that take all of these categories into consideration. In 2015 we traveled to Guatemala and built a home for a woman in the village of Jocotenango. In 2016 we traveled to Chicago to serve at Center for Student Missions and in 2017 we participated in YG '17 in Orange County, CA through the NAB conference. At all of these summer trips, the students will have opportunities to Encounter, to Grow, and to Serve.
One reason that we exist as a student ministry is to Encounter God. These activities are open to all students and follow a very basic format to allow students, especially students who have never spent much time in a church, an opportunity to Encounter God. An example of an event that allows students this opportunity is our Wednesday night Encounter Groups. These meetings are aimed at this purpose. We get together to have fun and fellowship, but our goal is to meet God. We don't go into too many really deep theological ideas because this is something that should be welcoming for all, no matter how young or how old they are in their faith. We believe that our students need to meet God in order to really develop a relationship with Him. This is a place to do that. Many of our special activities that we do throughout the year are also enveloped by this category.
The second reason that we exist is to Grow. The growth category consists of activities that give the students an opportunity to grow deeper in their faith. Can an activity that falls under Encounter or Serve also help students grow in their faith? Of course it can. But this category is aimed at growing students in the area of discipleship. Under this category we aim to see students grow in their understanding of the Word of God and in their desire to give of themselves for God's purposes. Some activities that fall under the category of Growing are Sunday School, One-to-One meetings with leaders, and Small Groups. These activities are geared toward some of the more committed students in the group who are showing a greater desire to understand and live for God.
Encounter Student Ministries' Mission is a very simple one. We exist for three reasons: To Encounter, To Grow, and To Serve. This threefold purpose is the heart behind every activity that we have within our student ministry. Below I will go into a little more depth explaining what each of these three categories represents.
Sr. High meets every Wednesday at 7 pm at The Oasis at FBC in Emery.
Jr. High meets at 6 pm on the second and fourth Sunday of every month at The Oasis at FBC in Emery.