Many Americans fear that the 2020 presidential election will only deepen the social and political schism in our nation. The tribes are already preparing for war, convinced that the way to save our country is “we win/you lose”…at any cost.
Scripture offers a shining alternative to this national self-destruction. The Apostle Paul asserted that God’s new community is to function as an integrated body with believers exercising their gifts in unity for the growth of the church. Paul modeled this by traveling with teams of leaders on his missionary journeys and establishing teams of elders and deacons in the churches he founded.
Webster calls this collaboration, literally “to labor together”. The exponential growth of the early church testifies to what can happen when believers unite and labor together for the advance of the Gospel.
Several years ago Mission Columbus began to convene groups of leaders whose churches or organizations serve the same cause. We call them Elevate groups because we believe that Christian ministries will “elevate” their collective impact when their leaders collaborate to advance their cause together. Several Elevate groups are already seeing significant results from their work in teams. (See Elevating Causes/Elevate Groups, below.)
We are confident that God’s kingdom will expand more rapidly as more Christians join together to address other critical social and spiritual causes in our region. Please pray with us for the growth of the current Elevate groups and for the birth of new ones!
People We Know | Ursula Kemp
Residence: Pataskala, Ohio
Church: Jersey Baptist Church
Occupation: Project Manager
Family: Married with a 10-year-old daughter
Q: What area of Christian service are you involved in?
A: One of the primary ways I serve is through intercession and mobilizing prayer with Pray for Columbus.
Q: What motivated you to get involved in a prayer movement?
A: I have always had a heart for prayer. When I was eleven years old, my sister suffered a traumatic brain injury and almost died. The doctors predicted that she would be a vegetable for the rest of her life. But God! We started praying, our church started praying, friends and family members began praying and within a month my sister was back in school and functioning normally. It was a complete miracle that God worked and a testimony of the power of prayer that I witnessed firsthand. This marked my life with a desire to seek the Lord in prayer and intercession from an early age.
Q: How did you get started?
A: I started with Pray for Columbus in 2014 when Scott Mallory asked me to serve part-time in this new ministry. I was immediately hooked and so excited to be a part of a citywide call to prayer.
Q: You already have a full plate as a wife and a mother. How do you find time for this ministry?
A: So many things in life are about balance and this is no exception. The great thing about ministry is that it encompasses all of life. We are called to be ambassadors of Christ wherever we go — whether it’s in the workplace or at home. I see all of my life as a ministry so being a wife and mother is part of the overall picture. It is a beautiful thing when these callings come together in harmony and that’s what I believe I’m living in right now.
Q: What about this brings you the greatest satisfaction?
A: It’s hard to choose just one thing – I would say the fellowship with other believers and seeing the fruit of our prayers. It’s an incredible thing to labor in prayer for a burden on your heart and then over time to see God answer directly and to see Him move in powerful ways. It is a constant encouragement to my soul to see how God responds to us. The way that prayer changes our hearts and conforms us to the image of Christ is well worth the sacrifice.
Mission Columbus offers Christian organizations biblically-based teaching and coaching about developing their donors through its partnership with Mission Increase. Mission Increase Area Director Wally Martinson leads workshops, book studies and coaching to help leaders motivate their donors to be more fully involved in their ministry’s cause.
Mission Increase hosted a seminar on how to give to Christian ministries more strategically.
9 Tax-Smart Giving Strategies for 2019
Learn more about Mission Increase and how your organization can receive this training.
Kingdom ROI (Return on Investment)
This valuable tool was developed by Saint Wall Street and is being sponsored by Mission Columbus. The calculator will make it possible for leaders to measure the actual outcomes and financial impact of their ministry. It’s available to ministry leaders now.
Leader Learning Group
Gathering monthly for one year, Tyler meets with groups of next-generation leaders to sharpen their understanding of and application of leadership skills for the advancement of the Gospel. As they read and discuss selected books, their life and leadership skills are refined, their vision for God’s work in the city is enlarged, and their interpersonal relationships are enriched. The 2019-2020 group began in April.
Pastor and Leader Support
Pastors and leaders value the opportunity to share their personal concerns and ministry challenges with a trusted confidant and to receive counsel from an experienced leader.
Mission Columbus is bringing together leaders from church and para-church ministries that are serving the same causes. The purpose of the Elevate groups is for the leaders to connect and better know each other, to communicate what’s happening in their ministries, and to pray for each other and look for ways to work together to advance their cause.
The High School Elevate group is up made of leaders from Young Life, Youth for Christ and Fellowship of Christian Athletes as well as the youth pastors of several area churches. The group hosted a seminar on treating anxiety and depression in teenagers and they created a directory of all the schools in Franklin County where there are current Christian ministries.
The Drug Recovery group is comprised of the leaders of four Gospel-centered residential drug treatment programs. They will host a summit on August 8, 2019 for Christian residential ministries.
The Immigrant/Refugee group is a representative team of leaders who are involved and passionate about ministry to immigrants and refugees. They are hiring a full-time director and they sponsored a prayer gathering for immigrants and refugees on April 13, 2019.
The Anti-Human Trafficking group is made up of leaders from multiple organizations that serve this critical cause. They meet periodically for interpersonal sharing and prayer.
The Workplace Ministry Forum represents ministries that equip Christian men and women to extend the Gospel to their colleagues at work.
HOPE Centers is made up of leaders of a dozen ministries that provide food, clothing and employment counseling to the neediest people in central Ohio.
For Your Prayer
The power that propels this ministry flows from the faithful and faith-filled prayers of dedicated Christians like you.
Praise God for…
- Mission Columbus and the Columbus Tutoring Initiative have identified prime candidates for directors of their ministries.
- The Immigrant/Refugee Elevate group is hiring a full-time director.
- 420 staff and volunteer leaders attended the High School Elevate group seminar on anxiety and depression on May 3.
- Mission Increase and the National Christian Foundation of Ohio co-sponsored a Strategic Giving Solutions workshop for approximately 30 leaders.
- The Drug Recovery Elevate group will host a summit for Ohio Christian recovery ministries on August 8.
- The Strategic Forecasting Project is about to be launched. This initiative will identify spiritual and social trends that will impact central Ohio churches and ministries.
- The 2019-2020 Leader Learning Group with five next-generation leaders was launched in April.
- The Sacred Sector Project is coaching 25 local churches and para-church organizations in how to respond to the legal challenges facing Christian organizations.
Ask God for…
- Discernment and guidance for Mission Columbus, the Columbus Tutoring Initiative and the Immigrant/Refugee Elevate group in the final selection of their directors.
- Insights, inspiration, and encouragement for each of the leaders attending the Drug Recovery Elevate summit on August 8.
- Wisdom and discernment for the Strategic Forecasting Project leadership team as it finalizes its plans before its launch.
- Growth in the life and leadership skills of each young leader in the new Leader Learning Group.
- Growth in the knowledge and effectiveness of each of the organizations in the Sacred Sector Project.
- A great decrease in anxiety and depression and a great increase in joy among high school students in central Ohio as a result of the May 3 seminar.
- Continued growth for each of the other Elevate groups (Anti-human Trafficking, Workplace and Hope Centers)…and direction for a possible Christian Counselor Elevate group.
- Growth in the number of Christians who serve in critical-cause ministries in our city.
Click here to receive the bi-monthly Praise and Prayer Report.