Santa Barbara Goodnews – Weeks of 8/30-9/11

Greetings from the Santa Barbara International Christian Church! This good news article we have combined two fantastic weeks into one article. Starting with Sunday August 30th, David and Jordan Swann came up from the Ventura region of the LA Church to Santa Barbara to preach the word of God. Their powerful sermons inspired us to continue doing God’s work and being on fire for Him! Jordan preached that if we aren’t doing God’s work, we are doing Satan’s will. Jordan challenged us to not disobey the vision, have fire inside of us and love the lost. David preached about how many people aren’t believed in by family, friends, co-workers, teachers etc. It’s easy for people to get beaten down from the world. As disciples we are commanded to love others and we all must participate in doing God’s work and not just wear the uniform. Disciples will suffer for being a Christian at times, but we must remember that Jesus suffered more than us.

 

Jordan and Dave Swann preach a powerful lesson to the Santa Barbara Church!

Jordan and Dave Swann preach a powerful lesson to the Santa Barbara Church!

 

 

As we begin the fall session, we now have three bible talks going on and have come up with names for each. Our professional singles and married bible talk is called T.G.F.F., which stands for Thank God For Family. The Santa Barbara City College bible talk is called SWAT, Students With a Testimony, and the UCSB bible talk name is The Truth.

God showed us his power to bring the harvest outside of our own efforts this past week. SBCC had a campus club day where the campus ministry set up a very simple table, compared to the other clubs. They simply made a sheet of paper for students to sign up if they wanted to study the bible. However, to God’s glory, seven men and eleven women said that they wanted to study the bible!

Corinna and Richie faithfully giving their hearts at the SBCC Club fair.

Corinna and Richie faithfully giving their hearts at the SBCC Club fair.

 

 

Additionally, at the professional singles and marrieds bible talk Thursday, we started off the evening with at great meal but sadly had no visitors until about 40 minutes in. Right when we were preparing our hearts to go back out and share our faith to get some visitors, we heard a knock on the door and four Mormon neighbors came to join our bible talk! Jason led a powerful lesson that opened up a great discussion. The Lord is the master of the harvest.

 

The Saturday before labor day, our church got to participate in our 1st annual Women’s volleyball tournament at William Mason Park in Irvine. The Santa Barbara sisters that participated were Dara Teamer, Corinna Sloan and Jessica Pengra. Their volleyball team consisted of sisters from the Ventura and North regions of the LA Church. The team first met each other that day of the tournament. Most of the sisters had the heart to play volleyball but the only experienced player was 7th grader Bella Swann, from Ventura! Although, the sisters lost the first six games against some very talented regions, they persevered and practiced continuously. At the last game, the sisters prayed and relied on God’s strength, and miraculously they played their best and closest game of them all. After a neck to neck game with the West region, the North and Ventura region sisters came in with their 1st victory!

 

The North Ventura and Santa Barbara Women's Volleyball team!

The North Ventura and Santa Barbara Women’s Volleyball team!

The sisters pray before their last game.

The sisters pray before their last game.

The sister celebrated loudly after such an exciting win!

The sister celebrated loudly after such an exciting win!

 

 

Monday, we returned to Irvine for the congregational Labor Day picnic of all the churches in Southern California. It was a fun day filled with fellowship, games, and food. From soccer, to volleyball, to capture the flag, disciples and visitors were able to enjoy a day with many exciting activities. Our church brought along two visitors from Santa Barbara who had a great time. It was a great way for our visitors to see the fellowship of God’s family from all over.

Jacob and Richie played blindfold musical chairs.

Jacob and Richie played blindfold musical chairs.

The brothers put in all their strength in to the tug-of-war competition.

The brothers put in all their strength in to the tug-of-war competition.

Everyone played hard during a competitive game of soccer.

Everyone played hard during a competitive game of soccer.

Laura having fun playing her game of soccer!

Laura having fun playing her game of soccer!

 

 

It was a heart filled week as we prepared our hearts to send out our dear brother Brian Lin to soon move to Australia. After women’s midweek at the Flury’s, the brothers came over to join the sisters to have a goodbye party for Brian. We celebrated with brownies, shared how Brian has impacted our lives, and wrote down special memories that we had with Brian. This was a great time of fellowship with the family and sharing with him the love of God’s Kingdom!

 

We sent brian off with love.

We sent brian off with love.

We all got to share our memories and love for Brian.

We all got to share our memories and love for Brian.

 

 

On Friday evening, the church went down to LA for a congregational devotional at USC about pure dating. Tim Kernan preached about the importance of purity because it separates us from the world. Our true worth is that we are priceless because Jesus died for our sins to give us a new life. Tim emphasized that brothers and sisters both need encouragement dates, but we must act with absolute purity. After Tim’s lesson, we had a speed dating session outside which was encouraging for the brothers and sisters from the same or different regions to get to know each other better.

Disciples at the congregational dating devo learned how to have pure relationships in the kingdom.

Disciples at the congregational dating devo learned how to have pure relationships in the kingdom.

Everyone had fun on the one minute speed encouragement activity.

Everyone had fun on the one minute speed encouragement activity.

 

 

We are excited to see the great and exciting news to come this next week in Santa Barbara!

 

– Laura Lewis