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I’m Going to Tokyo

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Friends & Family,

I wanted to take a minute to tell you about an exciting trip that I’ll be taking in May.

As most of you know, I’m now serving at Resonate Church in Nashville, TN as the Director of Equipping and Communication. Magen and I absolutely love being part of the Resonate family and we truly feel like we’re “home.”

One of the things we’re especially excited about this year at Resonate is the chance to support an indigenous church planter in Tokyo named Yoshiko Noguchi. Yoshi is connected to the Soma Family of Churches (wearesoma.com), a family of churches to which we are also a member. As a result. we have great theological and methodological alignment with Yoshi, we trust him fully, and we’re excited to see how the Spirit of God uses him in Tokyo.

Tokyo has around 35 million people, and the estimated percentage of evangelical christians is only about half of one percent. The gospel desperately needs to be planted in Tokyo.

Myself, Shane England (the pastor of Resonate), and a few other pastors from around the country, are headed to Tokyo in May to meet with Yoshi and other church planters in Japan. We’re anxious to get a better idea of the gospel work taking place there and to plan and pray about further work in this region of the world.

This is where you come in. I need your help. I personally need to raise $3700 by May 20th (when I leave) in order to make this trip a reality. I’m asking you to prayerfully consider supporting my trip as I take this journey overseas. I’m so excited! Somehow in all my 34 years I haven’t left America until now, and I’m anxious to better obey the Great Commission by going to all nations.

If you decide to give, all gifts are tax deductible.

Thanks so much for your support!

Ben Adkison
615-775-6143
biggzipp@gmail.com

 

3 Ways to Help:

Give Online

*It’s safe & secure.

http://bit.ly/resonate_japan

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GIVE by CHECK

Make check out to “Resonate Church” & write “Ben – Japan” in the memo line.

Resonate Church
2817 West End Ave
Suite 126-147
Nashville, TN 37203

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PRAY for ME

I’ll be blogging about the trip here at biggzipp.com

More info about how to pray for Tokyo & Japan here:

http://bit.ly/japan_1
http://bit.ly/japan_2

Ministry Update:: June 2014

I actually enjoy writing. I promise I really do. But I’m horrible about writing ministry updates to keep everyone up to date with what’s going on.

So here’s a brief overview of what’s been happening:

Keller Chloe

Keller Chloe is here!

On April 13th, we finally welcomed our very overdue daughter, Keller Chloe, to the world. So far I can say that having a two month old baby girl is really no different than having a two month old baby boy. However, I’m told this will change as she grows older. Having two sons and two brothers, and no sisters, I’m at a loss as to how this will be different, but I know it will be. People keep telling me I’m going to be ruined in a good way!

Our City Group is Going Great.

block party

As I indicated in my last update (the one from several months ago), at the beginning of the year Magen and I helped launch a new City Group on the West side of town. I can honestly say this has been one of the most rewarding community group / small group / missional community (whatever you want to call them) experiences that we’ve ever had. We love our Fisk / Meharry City Group. And we do truly feel like they’re family. For the past several months we’ve been getting to know one another and learning how to better speak the gospel into one another’s lives. We’ve also been trying to be faithful missionaries to each other and those around us.

A couple highlights have been:

Our 4th Annual Neighborhood Party. We had about 100 folks show up this time to hang out with us and celebrate our community. We met lots of new friends (in fact I would say compared to the other parties we’ve hosted, this one was the most effective for really getting to talk, hang out, and get to know our neighbors). We plan to throw another party at the end of Summer as well.

Mission Week. This past week we had a student ministry up from Northern Alabama to help us minister to our neighborhood. Every day we hosted and Backyard Bible club in the empty lot next to our house. We played games, drank tons of Kool Aid (over 10 gallons in 4 days), and went through The Story of God for Kids. The neighborhood kids were receptive to the stories and had lots of questions about God, sin, and the purpose of life. We feel that many seeds were sown. We also got the chance to clean up alleys and pick up trash around the neighborhood each day.

 

Resonate Residency is Full Steam Ahead.

Residency

About a month ago, I built a website for our new residency program for church planters at Resonate. The website exists as a sort of front door to advertise and explain the residency process. Shane and I are currently talking to a couple different guys who are interested in planting churches and potentially becoming part of the Resonate Residency Program during 2014 / 2015. If you know someone who is interested in planting a church, tell them to check out ResonateResidency.com or contact me for more information.

There’s so much more I could say.

  • Magen and I are doing great and figuring out the challenges of raising three kids who are 3 or under.
  • I’m working several different jobs, but have a lot of freedom to rearrange them as need be for ministry.
  • Thank you to everyone who has sent graphic design / web design work my way. I’m swamped! (and that’s a good thing!)
  • We absolutely love Resonate Church and are glad God led us to be a part of such a fantastic family.
  • I feel extremely blessed to have Shane England as a pastor. He is truly one of my best friends and a brother in arms.
  • I’ll be spending the coming week in Clarksville, TN as part of Tennessee Super Summer and helping teach and lead kids who are sensing a call to vocational ministry.
  • I could keep going, but I’ll stop for now and try to update more often.

Thank you all so much for your financial and prayer support. Becoming a family of 5 has increased our weekly needs and we couldn’t make it without you. If you aren’t supporting us financially, but are interested, please go to http://www.resonatemadison.org/#/give/support-the-adkisons. All donations go to support our ministry at Resonate Church in Nashville, TN and are tax deductible.

Till next time!

Easter

Ministry Update: Stardate: Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hey everyone,

There’s lots of stuff going on, and I wanted to take a second to update you all on the latest with the Adkison family and our ministry with Resonate Church.

City GroupsCityGroups (lo res)
Ever since joining Resonate this past fall, our family had been part of an awesome City Group in the Inglewood area. We’ve loved being a part of this group because it allowed us to make new friends quickly and feel like we were part of the family at Resonate.

About 2 months ago, Shane began talking with a few of us about the possibility of launching a new City Group on the West side of town. There are quite a few Resonate folks who live West, and many of the City Groups at Resonate were at or near capacity, so it just made sense to start a new community closer to where many of us live.

So, for a little over a month now, we’ve been co-leading a City Group out of the Adkison house. We’re already seeing great relationships formed, the gospel taught and explained, and people getting excited about mission on the West Side. Magen and I have a huge heart for our neighborhood and have been developing relationships for the past 4 or 5 years here. We can’t wait to see many people come to faith as a result of the Fisk / Meharry City Group!

Residency Program
Just a quick update on the Residency Program at Resonate. I recently updated our interim leadership team about the status of the residency program and we believe we’re on track to launch in June. The details are all coming together and we look forward to being used of God to plant new churches and missional communities throughout Nashville and the world. I’ll post specific details about the Residency Program as soon as I can.

Work
I also wanted to give everyone an update on my work situation. God has truly provided for our needs during the first two months of the year. People have been gracious to support us financially, God has given me more graphic and web design work than I almost know what to do with, and I recently started a part time job at Lifeway headquarters. Altogether, I am fairly busy and we are paying the bills!

Volkswagen Routan

A Van
One of the tangible things we’ve been asking God to provide for our family is a minivan. We have a new addition to the family, a little girl, who is going to be here in less than two months, and our current vehicle simply cannot house three car seats. We’ve been praying and asking God for wisdom about what to do. Well as of today, I’m excited to report that we’ve found a van, and we’ll have it on our possession in a few weeks!

When I was talking to my dad about the situation, he mentioned that he and Karla were considering selling their van, and as we talked, it just made sense that this was what we had been looking for. So my dad is selling me his barely used van at a great price! Bonus: I get to fly out to Colorado with my brother Andy to pick it up, and see the Colorado side of the family. So we’re super-stoked about getting to spend some quality time together in the air, in the mountains, and on the road!

Thanks everyone for your prayers and support of the Adkison family in our latest ministry endeavor.

Here are a few prayer requests:

  • Pray for the Fisk / Meharry City Group, that we would be a good family of missionary servants to the people of West / North Nashville.
  • Pray for the Residency Program at Resonate, that we would develop a great plan for training up and helping prepare men to plant churches.
  • Pray for the salvation of many with whom we are sharing the gospel in our City Group, in our neighborhood, and throughout Nashville.
  • Pray for my (Ben’s) sanity as I am juggling a pretty heavy workload with lots of deadlines.

 

God is good!

A Video About Resonate Church

This is where Magen and I now serve and celebrate Jesus. This is a video about what we’re excited to be a part of.

When Shane talks about the Church Planting Residency Program in the video, this is what I’m helping to launch this year at Resonate.

SERMON: Jesus Calms the Sea

jesus-calms-the-sea

 

PREACHED:  11/24/13
TITLE:  Jesus Calms the Sea
TEXT:  Mark 4:35-41
LOCATION:  Resonate Church – Madison, TN

SYNOPSIS:  Jesus amazed his disciples when He did something that only God could have done:  instantly caused a storm to cease.  They looked at one another in astonishment and fear and asked one another, “Who is this man?” The clear implication of text is that He is in fact God incarnate.

STREAM

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

DOWNLOAD:  Jesus Calms the Sea

 

* if you’re using an iOS device, stream by clicking on the DOWNLOAD link

** to download, right click and “save as” on a PC, or control-click and “save target as” on a MAC

 

SERMON: The Gospel as Worldview

The-Gospel-as- Worldview

 

PREACHED:  11/17/13
TITLE:  The Gospel as Worldview
TEXT:  Colossians 1:13-23
LOCATION:  24church – Pleasant View, TN

SYNOPSIS:  This gospel of Jesus Christ is not simply a message of morality, or a “get in heaven free card” but an all-encompassing worldview that effects every part of our lives.

STREAM

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

DOWNLOAD:  The Gospel as Worldview

 

* if you’re using an iOS device, stream by clicking on the DOWNLOAD link

** to download, right click and “save as” on a PC, or control-click and “save target as” on a MAC

 

Ministry for 2014

Pray-for-the-Adkisons

So what’s going on with the Adkison’s you ask? Since Basileia Church officially disbanded in August, my family and I have been resting and asking God “What now?” The most logical place for us to regain a sure footing seemed to be another church plant that a good friend of mine (Shane England) planted around the same time that we were planting. The reasons for picking Resonate as our place of rest were numerous:  1) We wanted to participate in a church that had a similar philosophy of ministry to Basileia (i.e. – gospel-centered, missional-minded, community-cultured), 2) I felt like I could trust Shane because he knew the ins and outs of what we’d been through in planting, 3) Resonate was relatively close to where we lived, 4) In some ways Resonate felt like a continuation of what we’d started at Basileia since it was still on the East side of Nashville, 5) Holy Spirit peace about Resonate, 6) We immediately felt loved when we visited, especially my wife!

So, since August we’ve been plugging into Resonate and making friends and being fed and loving every minute of it. And we feel like this is where we’re supposed to stay.

Somewhere in the midst of this resting time, Shane asked me the question, “How do you feel about fundraising?” He asked it in the sort of sly way that insinuated what he was getting at, but nevertheless remained vague. But I had a feeling that Shane wanted us to consider sticking around Resonate (something we were also desirous to do). So a few days later I asked him, “What did you mean we you asked me about fundraising?” And he responded by inviting us to consider making Resonate our church family and future ministry focus. As Magen and I talked through things, that was exactly what we wanted to do too. In fact, we couldn’t imagine not being at Resonate.

Residency-ProgramThis November, Resonate officially brought me on as a “Church Planting Coordinator,” in order to help spearhead an effort to start a Church Planting Residency Program at Resonate Church. I whole-heartedly believe that church planting is one of the most effective ways of reaching the de-churched and un-churched of our cities, and that church planting will continue to have a prominent role in evangelism until Jesus returns. Church planting is “hot” right now, but it’s also as old as the New Testament. I believe in church planting, and I feel called to give my life to it.

Our goal at Resonate is to see one missional community (sort of a pre-church that meets in a home) planted for every 1000 residents in our city.  In other words, we’d like to plant 1600+ missional communities in our city. That’s a big, hairy, audacious goal!  It’s a God-sized goal.  And we’re pursuing it.

However, in order to do this, we’ve got to do a better job of training our people in healthy gospel-centered, missional-minded, community-cultured ways. And that’s what this residency program is all about. We still have a lot to figure out, but the rough outline of our plans for 2014 are taking shape.  By God’s grace we hope to see at least two men (future church planters!) become a part of this new residency program during 2014.  That’s our goal.

The sort of up-in-the-air thing about all this, is that I have to raise my own salary. We’ve currently have about 1/4th of the money we need to pay the bills during 2014.  I’m also working 2 part time jobs and trying to find a third one (not counting Resonate). So things are crazy! But I believe this is exactly where God wants us. And I know he’ll take care of us.

Here are 4 things you can do for us:

  1. Pray for God’s continued leading in our ministry, for continued clarity on the Residency Program, for God to send us men who are called to plant churches, and for the funds we need to make it in 2014.
  2. Consider hiring me for you graphic design / web design needs (this is one of the things I do on the side).  You can check out my portfolio at http://beardedmanstudio.com.
  3. Consider supporting us financially. We’re especially looking for monthly partners who will pledge to support us with smaller amounts of money every month.  Say $100, $50, or $25 every month. Believe it or not, smaller monthly donations are more consistent and helpful than big, one-time donations. However, if you want to give anything, we’d sure appreciate it! You can give online to Resonate and designate it to us here:  http://www.resonatemadison.org/give/support-the-adkisons. All donations are of course, tax-deductible.
  4. If you think you might be called to plant a church, send me an email (see the bottom of this page), I’d love to chat about the Residency Program.

There’s lot’s more information coming, and Magen is even going to get on here and blog some, but this is plenty of info for now.  Love you all!

Ben