Monday, December 29, 2008

Monday Morning

The house is quiet. The coffee is hot and I am enjoying some down time before rushing into the plans for the day. We are meeting for our staff meeting tonight in an effort to begin the assimilation process of Woodcreek Bible Church into our Gateway Family. There is much to be done. In the midst of knowing there is a lot to do, I am reminded once again of God's faithfulness. The Lord has orchestrated this move and it brings to fruition a part of the vision that He has given us. I love the way He does that. I love the fact that all things work together for His good and on His time.
This week we will be having a New Year's Eve Party followed on Sunday by our first worship service with the people from Woodcreek. On Sunday, these people will be a huge part of the Gateway Family and we are really looking forward to what He is going to do in and through all of us. The vision we have to reach the communities that surround us is big. Steps such as this one help to make it feel right and give us strength for the journey ahead.
Woodcreek has been meeting in Fate, a neighboring community. When we first met their pastor, we as a church, decided to come along beside then and help them however we could in their efforts to reach that community. From day one, we have had a heart for Fate and a passion to really engage the community. With the adoption of this fellowship into ours, we will begin investing in Fate, in ways we did not before because there was a like minded missional church already established in the community through Woodcreek. This week will begin a new chapter in the life of Gateway fellowship. It is one that I am excited to see how the Lord unfold the pages to us.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sunday Reflections

I love our church
I love our people
I love sharing what the Lord is doing

Today was an opportunity for me to be able to speak about my Lord and how He meets us at the deepest point of our needs. I had a "It's a Wonderful Life" moment this past week and truly witnessed the hand of God pour out blessing after blessing to our family. He used a host of people to show His love towards us through their actions, prayers and gifts. Thank you Father for being and doing exactly what You say You do!

Next week, we will be joined by the people who have been meeting together as Woodcreek Bible Church. They had their last service today and we will be adopting them into our church family. The Lord is doing some amazing things in the life of our church, our school community and our individual lives

Sunday Morning~ December 28th

It is 1:44 a.m. on Sunday, December 28th. The last few days have been a roller coaster of a ride for my family and I am looking forward to sharing with the church everything that the Lord has done is us over this time frame. Not only is the excitement of preaching keeping me up but it is my beautiful wife's birthday today. I love her and thank the Lord for her daily. She is truly a gift from the Father and I cherish her every moment I can. It is my duty to love her just as Christ loves the church, and I pray she understands just how much she means to me.

Natalie you are my best friend, an amazing wife, a loving mother and my treasure. I am so thankful for the the things that we have walked through together in life. The many events that have taken place have done nothing but make us stronger. You are my confidant and you keep me longing for more. More in this life together, more in our ministry together and more in loving the community that the Lord has called for us to shepherd. Thank you for being right beside me and not behind me. You are a beautiful women and I celebrate you life today. I celebrate more than the fact that you are my wife, and a mother and my best friend but I rejoice in the fact that you are passionate about people and what Jesus has for them. Thank you for living in your giftedness. Natalie may the lord continue to bless us and our children as we walk in the truth of His ways. For His name and renown are the desire of our hearts

I Love You Baby,


Friday, December 26, 2008

Thank You from The Brown's

To the Gateway Fellowship and Greenville Christian School Family,

Words can not begin to express the gratitude we have for you. As you know, our home was broken into the day before Christmas Eve and many of our personal items were lost as well as the fact that it looked like our Christmas had been robbed from us. As we began to pick up our home and put things back together, the Gateway Fellowship and GCS Family started an outpouring of love for our family that has even to this point, not stopped. Because of people like you, who are willing to be the hands, heart and feet of God, my family experienced the best Christmas we have ever had. Cade continues to pray that "the people who did this would know that it was God's house they broke into and prays they will realize what they have done is wrong". This event, although very tough to walk through, has been a teachable moment for our family. On Christmas Eve, the visits, phone calls and Christmas gifts that you gave to us changed our life forever. We are grateful to be a part of the Gateway Fellowship and GCS family and will honestly hold this week in our memory forever~ not because of what happened to us but because we have witnessed the hands, feet and heart of our Savior through your selfless acts of worship to your King. It is truly a reminder of the real reason for the season of Christmas. May we forever cling to our Savior, who came down to earth as a baby and changed the world forever. Over the past few years, I have begun to speak about he fact that it "smells like Jesus" when I am able to literally see His handiwork. I want to tell you today that it definitely "smells like Jesus" because of people like you. We count it a blessing to be "family" with you and treasure the opportunities we have to pour our lives into yours. I leave you with the words that have been ringing in my heart:

To God be the glory, great things He hathdone;
So loved He the world that He gave us His Son,
Who yielded His life, an atonement for sin,
And opened the lifegate, that all may go in.

O perfect redemption, the purchase of blood,
To every believer, the promise of God;
The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.

Great things He hath taught us, great things He hath done,
And great our rejoicing through Jesus the Son;
But purer, and higher, and greater will be
Our wonder, our transport1, when Jesus we see!

Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the earth hear His voice!
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord,
Let the people rejoice!
O come to the Father, through Jesus the Son,
And give Him the glory, great things He hath done!
—Fanny J. Crosby (1820-1915)

Doing Life Together,

Trent Brown / Lead Pastor
Gateway Fellowship

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

windshield wipers

wipers busted. i have seen it all. we had to bungy cord the wipers together and attach a rope to the wiper that jeff jones is pulling from behind the driver seat~awesome

Friday, December 19, 2008

Reflections form the trip

We are back and had an awesome time. I will be spending the holidays reflecting on this trip and continuing to seek what the Lord has for us as we move forward in our missional work at the school. I do want to thank you for allowing us to invest in the lives of your children as we encourage them to invest in the lives of others. My prayer is that we will never lose sight of what the Lord has called us to do. May He continue to give us opportunities to meet peoples need. May we always hold true to the idea that "Jesus" is what everyone needs!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

home stretch

we are at bass pro drive on 30~almost home

for visual learners

here is a pic of jeff jones with the rope that is attached to the wipers which is allowing us to see. i must say awesome. great adults on this trip

at the czech stop

this is the last stop before we get to greenville

in the bus

we are about 45 minutes away from Waco and the natives are getting restless

lunch on the way back

we are on the austin side of san antonio. leaving early this morning has allowed us to make great time


we are in McAllen at McD's

back in Texas

one hour later and we have made it through the border. leaving early paid off

loaded and headed to the border

it is 500 and we are loaded and on our way

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

prayer for mr hansen

final prayer for mr hansen and the ministry here

wednesday reflections

today has been awesome. the pump house has been cleared and they are able to locate pipes for future additions and repairs. yes, we actually repaired 3 while we were here. we busted a few but have no fear, we fixed them. we also got the foundation built and the concrete poured for a new church~ which is located off campus. in addition to that the pave stone driveway was completed and all the students and adults were able to write their name in the cement we used as a border for the driveway. a mark that will last for a while. we are currently hosting the happy birthday Jesus festival as i type.

i also wanted to let you know that we plan on heading out of the orphanage in reynosa at 5:00 a.m. in an effort to get to the border early~ hoping to beat some of the traffic and avoid long lines.

i will be updated during our journey home tomorrow and we look forward to seeing you all

football toss

the inflatable football toss just got rocked by own of the kids~awesome


pic from the festival we put on

face painting

jake putting his skills to work

at market

group pic at Market

broken pipes

we have bnow officially become a plumbing crew. this is the third pipe we have busted! have no fear~ we fix what we break

mixing cement

the boys are mixing cement in preparation for the driveway

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

reflections from tuesday

today has been filled with work. it is chilly here. so chilly they called school off today in reynosa. it has been crazy working out in the rain but we have gotten a lot accomplished. hopefully you have seen some of the pictures showing the progress of what we have been doing. we were served a meal this evening by one of the families here- it was awesome. we are currently watching all of the little children here in the orphanage while the adults have their christmas staff party. this is the very reason i must be brief tonight. we have children everywhere. your students are amazing and i am having a blast working alongside them.

coach brown

dinner at the Cruiz's

we had a family here that cooked dinner for us. we are eating in their home

2 truck loads

the students have succersfully leveled two truck loads of dirt in an effort to help cover the back end of the property

looking good

just waiting for some concrete to lock it all in ands a few more cut in pieces

almost done

it is almost lunch time and the students have nearly completed the driveway. once all the stones are in we will top off with mortar and sand to help keep form

time for break

the driveway is halfway done. now it is time for a coke break

laying the pavestone

we are starting to put the pavestone down for the driveway

Monday, December 15, 2008

monday reflections

greetings to all. i am typing on my phone keyboard so bare with the fact that i am not taking time to capitalize properly. i want you to know that your students are doing great. the ones that have been here before and rekindling old friendships and the ones who this is their first year, are making new friends. it is always great to see students embracing others in a different context than what they are accustomed to both contextually and culturally. you have seen some of the projects that were begun today. we started getting the driveway ready to put the pave stones down. we have done our best to dig up the dirt around the water lines in an effort to make it easier for them to be able to repair and make additions in the future. i also have to tell you that in the process of doing that we have already had to fix two lines that we accidentally punctured. we also have begun the beginning stages of preparing the ground for an additional housing unit to be built. not only has this taken place today but we sent out several students to begin the foundation for a church. don't worry, if you did not give permission for your student to go off campus, they did not. we also put together the clothes racks for the school uniforms and were able to sort all the clothing as well. it has been a great day and we look forward to what tomorrow holds

~coach brown

dinner with friends

This is Ronnie, Daniella, Edgar, Pepe, Jose Luis, and Brian

Yes, It is level

Jake Schuman shows he has skills with the level. Yes, we are almost ready to start laying the pavestone

lunch time

Here is a pic of lunch time at Rio Bravo Orphanage. The kids are still in school this week. This is a great place and the Lord is doing a mighty work here

clothes racks

here are the clothes raacks we built for the school uniforms

pavestone driveway

working on getting the ground ready for placing a pavestone driveway down

working on water lines

students and adults are working on digging out the water lines to make them easier to get to for repairs

foundation work

students working on beginning a foundation for another housing unit

sorting school uniforms

the students have begun sorting school uniforms while at the same time sorting out some other clothes to be given to the children in the orphanage

Early Morning Study

some of the guys gather in the cafeteria for some early morning study and reflection

Sunday, December 14, 2008

start of service

we are fixing to have Sunday Night Service. The kids are excited to see familiar faces


Here is a picture of the ladies serving dinner with some of the kitchen staff. Every student has an opportunity to serve in this capacity during the week

play time

students chilling and hanging with some of the kids

Fauley and Henderson

Brandon Fauley and Jordan Henderson are now with us at the orphanage. Coach Wombakwer went this morning to the airport and it took him 2 hours to get back into Texas.

Chillin' after service

students are hanging out under the patio after service

He who began a good work

Mr Hansen just got done speaking about the story of his life and the orphanage. He shared the fact that the Lord who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it~ then he added his ending which says, "if you will let Him".
What an awesome reminder

Breakfast Time

Everyone is up and ready for some hot breakfast and then headed into church service. We are looking forward to hearing Mr. Hansen's story and the story of the orphanage

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Safe and Sound

We have arrived!

Across The Border

We made it across. We are on our way to the orphanage. Check out the traffic

Long Road Trip

We are still a few hours from the border. Most of the students are asleep which I have to admit makes a long road trip almost pleasant

Lunch Time

We are in San Antonio eating lunch. Fixing to load back up and get back on the road

Breakfast Stop

We stopped in West, Texas for breakfast. Road trips made great at the Czech Stop. Sausage and fruit Kolachies for all

getting ready

It is 5:32 am and we are waiting for the rest of the students and adults to show up. We will be pulling out shortly and headed to Reynosa. Lift us up this week as we share the love of Christ with those in Mexico

Friday, December 12, 2008

Reynosa, Mexico~ Weather Forecast

10-Day Forecast

Dec 12 Mostly Clear 50° 10 %
Dec 13 Partly Cloudy / Wind 76°/58° 10 %
Dec 14 Partly Cloudy / Wind 84°/61° 0 %
Dec 15 Partly Cloudy 84°/60° 10 %
Dec 16 Isolated T-Storms 82°/60° 30 %
Dec 17 Isolated T-Storms 83°/64° 30 %
Dec 18 Isolated T-Storms 84°/60° 30 %
Dec 19 Sunny 79°/58° 0 %
Dec 20 Sunny 77°/55° 0 %
Dec 21 Partly Cloudy 76°/53° 0 %
Last Updated Dec 12 11:25 a.m. Local Time

1:40 p.m. Friday, December 12

Coach Wombaker just got back from picking the van up. We have the trailer hooked up to it and almost totally loaded. Things seem to be going smooth at this point. The Bus is being gassed up, tire pressure checked and a list of other things. The students are getting excited about what will take place over the next few days. We leave at 6:00 a.m. tomorrow morning, Saturday December 13th.
Please pray for the following students and adults this week:
Jennifer Shadell, Ali Jones, Ashley Burgess, Maddie Manning, Sara Nelson, Raigan Wimberley, Jessie Helton, Amanda Valenzuela, Hannah Fields, Carinne Brewer, Morgan Jones, Liz Mixson, Laura Stuart, Brianna Fauley, Tracey NEal, Andrew Wombaker, Jake Schuman, Forest Livergood, Trey Jackson, Josh Evans, Brandon Fauley, Jeramy Parrish, Evan Hawthorne, Nick Nelson, Taylor Standridge, Preston Manning, Josh Parrish, Ethan Vaughn, John Parker, Mason Rook, Jordan Henderson, Brad Byers, Mrs.Nelson, Mrs, Burgess, Mrs. Brown, Mr. Wombaker, Mr. Wimberley, Mr. Fields, Mr. Jones, Mr Brown

Prayer Time

We just gathered the school together for a time of prayer over the students and adults who are leaving in the morning to go on the Mexico Mission Trip. We are traveling to Reynosa, Mexico to work with an orphanage and do some needed construction work. Please continue to pray for us. We leave Saturday morning, December 13th and will return on Thursday evening, December 18th

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Mexico Mission Trip

We leave on Saturday to take the students to Reynosa, Mexico to work with an orphanage. We are really excited about the trip and are looking forward to what He will do in and through us.

~ I plan on drinking as much st.arbuxs as I can before we leave

this is a test mobile post to make sure it is working

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Church Adoption

For the past month, I have been carrying on a conversation with a like minded church in our community. This church approached us with the idea of becoming "adopted" by us and becoming a part of the Gateway Family. It has been a few awesome weeks of meetings and making new friends. They are voting this Sunday morning on the idea of dissolving their church and joining us as we minister to this local community and the communities surrounding us. I have had great talks with their Pastor who will be joining our staff in the role of Teaching/Discipleship Pastor. He is an awesome guy and is sold out to the vision we have. I have also had the opportunity of hanging with the elders of their church and hearing their heart for the community and ministries of the church. I am praying that they will join us for worship on January 4, 2009 as they dissolve on December 28th. My staff is very excited about the possibilities and what the Lord has in store for us all. We are looking forward and praying towards the idea of the synergy that an "adoption" such as this can provide in reaching the unconvinced with the Gospel.
It nights like this that get me fired up. I love watching people as they sense the move of God and are willing to be obedient and open to it. May we never loose sight of what He has called us to do. Pray with us about the awesome opportunity

Church Planting

I love talking church planting with people. I met a new friend this evening. His name is Kyle and I met him through Facebook. I have to tell you that I love technology and the way it makes communication so easy. I can not begin to tell you the number of ministry contacts I have made through Facebook. Anyway, I really enjoy talking about ministry to people and praying for them and what the Lord has in store for their lives and the pilgrimage He has them on. Back to communication~ It seems as though we have always had these tools at our disposal but I do remember the days of snail mail, home phones and writing letters. I have to say that I would much rather have my Mac in front of me and using the Internet to communicate at a much faster rate than have to wait for a letter to get to my intended recipient and then have to wait for the their letter in response. I told Kyle tonight that I would be praying for him and keeping in contact with him. Thanks to Facebook, I not only have a new friend but a new partner in ministry as well as a very productive way to communicate.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Kissing Toilets~ Perry Noble

The below blog is from Perry Noble's blog page. Perry is the Lead Pastor of NewSpring Church. I loved reading it and wanted to share it with you in case you do not follow his blogs.

Kissing Toilets
by perry noble
I shared this story on Friday night at our worship celebration…and thought I should share it here as well.

I was in the bathroom the other day taking a “pee pee” when I turned to my right and there was Charisse staring at me. (It was totally awkard!)

SO…I told her, “Daddy is pee pee’ing in the toliet…you will do that one day.”

She looked at me, smiled and said, “pee pee!!!”

I then turned around to wash my hands, explaining to her that after we pee pee we clean our hands…but when I turned and looked at her she was staring at the toilet.

I was afraid she was going to stick her hands in it…so I told her, “don’t touch.”

BUT…that’s when she did the unthinkable…she leaned forward and kissed the toilet lid!

I wanted to throw up! Seriously…WOW! I told her, “NO!!!” And I scooped her up…and THAT IS WHEN SHE WANTED TO KISS ME!!!

AHHHHHH! What is a dad to do? I LOVE my little girl…but she kissed a freakin’ toilet seat!!! I watched the whole thing…it was SO GROSS…

I was about to put her down when the Lord spoke to my heart and said, “Hey Perry…what you just saw her do…you’ve done many times. You’ve kissed the “toilet” of the world all week long and then came into church and tried to kiss me!”


For WAY TOO LONG coming to church was about making me feel better and not exalting a HOLY and RIGHTEOUS GOD. I would “kiss toliets” all week long by the way I spoke about other people, the things I looked at…the places I allowed my mind to wander…and then I would come to church wanting God to make me feel better…BUT COMPLETELY unwilling to repent of the sin that was dominating me.

One of the things that I think we often forget as follower of Christ is that He knows…He knows our hearts…He knows our minds…and He knows the toliets we kiss all week long.

Judas kissed Him…but it was a kissed laced with betrayal and greed. God is not pleased with our church attendance…but rather our repentance.

Just wondering…kissing any toilets? Anything in your life that you know God doesn’t approve of…you refuse to repent…and you are going to come to church this Sunday and pretend that eveything is okay with you & God?

These are tough questions to wrestle with…but doing so will reveal our hearts!!!

One more thing…I LOVE MY LITTLE GIRL! Even watching her kiss a toilet make me stop loving her. It made me sick…but didn’t change the fact that I love her. I don’t love her because of what she does…I love her because she’s mine!!!

I am so glad that God treats us the same way…even through the time when I was kissing toliets and breaking His heart…He never stopped loving me…and it was His patience and kindness that drew me to Him (and still does) and conforms me more and more to who He has called me to be!!!

Gotta go give Charisse a kiss!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday Reflections

~ I Love Gateway Fellowship
~ I Love what the Lord is doing in and through us
~ I Love our Team
~ I Love the vision He has given us
~ I Love seeing what the Lord is doing in people
~ I Love praying for His people and what they are going through
~ I Love that He has big things in store for us

We are walking through some amazing things as a church right now. God is doing some things that we have been praying about for over a year. It is so good to know that He works things out in His time and not necessarily ours. May we always be in step with Him. May we never get out front of Him or fall back behind Him. Thank you Father for continuing to stretch us and grow us.