Thrive Church…Tomorrow is going to be Powerful. Plus (+) We have an Interim Director for One Youth! Woo Hoo!

Happy Saturday Thrive Church
 
I hope you’re doing well and enjoying this weather!!
 

You have to know 3 things…

 
1. We’re talking about how to Recalibrate Your Life tomorrow. Maybe you’ve been out of whack. Feeling like something is missing. Feeling like you’re ‘off’ with God? We’re diving into this passage…
2. Please check your mailbox or email inbox on Monday and Tuesday. I sent home a letter with some SUPER IMPORTANT UPDATES ON THE MOVE TO CMU!!!
 

Are you praying for that? Are you asking God to provide? Are you asking Him to open up the floodgates of heaven on our Church? Please do!

 
3. Jessica Herron is One Youth’s new Interim Director! WOOOOO HOOOOO!!!! Let me back up. One Youth has come a LONG way this way! We have record students involved, record adult volunteers, amazing worship and its been AMAZING on Sunday nights!
 
PAUSE: If your student isn’t involved, come on! Get them there!!
 
Ok, anyways, I have been leading the Church and leading One Youth. Which has worked. But, honestly, I need to raise up new leaders and Matt and I have been praying for One Youth’s next steps.
 
God laid Jess on my heart. She’s been at Thrive since the beginning. Her heart for our students in unreal. She helped start One Youth and honesty, it wouldn’t be here without her faithfulness!
 
Plus, I have personally seen her GROW a ton as a leader over the last 3 years. So, Matt and I took her to lunch and asked her to be the Interim Director and she said YES!!!
 
She is the Interim and she is volunteer staff. I have empowered her to LEAD. To make decisions. To be the point person.
 
So, PLEASE Congratulate her! Please THANK her!!!
 

2017 is already shaping up to be our BEST year yet as a Church!!!

 
The Best is yet to come!
Jason Raitz
 
PS…You coming tomorrow to Thrive? If not, why? If you’ve been away for a while and find it hard to come back, just take the step!

Meet Sam!! Thrive’s Newest Staff Member!! I am sooo EXCITED!

I pinch myself daily because I believe that God assembled an…

  • ABSOLUTELY
  • HUMBLE
  • HARD WORKING
  • FUN
  • CREATIVE
  • JESUS FOLLOWING 

Thrive Staff Team!!

I mean, I think I have a little experience in the matter! I have served at local churches for  22 years! In that time, I have worked and served with some amazing people. But, BUT and its a BIG but, I have never worked and served with such an amazing group of people!

They really are selfless. Many of them work crazy amounts of hours, way more than they’re paid for, to serve the people of Thrive Church. Many of them raise their financial support so they can be a part of the team. They just serve tirelessly and they do it to serve Jesus and others. No one has gotten a raise. No one is here to get rich. Any one of them would drop anything to see someone find and follow Jesus!

And now, God has increased our team! The Thrive staff team is made up of a few different positions. We have full time Pastors, we have part time paid staff, part time volunteer staff and then we have interns.

Meet Sam!! Our Thrive Kidz Creative Director! 

Sam is absolutely incredible! She’s been involved at Thrive for about a year and a half and

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Sam is second from the right. 

in that time has made an unbelievable difference! She’s humble, she’s hard working, she has an incredible attitude, she is a team player, she loves kids, she serves volunteers, she’s hungry to learn more, she’s a leader, she’s a very good communicator, she always brings so much life whenever she is a part of something, she is a difference maker and she loves Jesus!

She is really a spectacular woman!

So, when the opportunity arose for Sam and I to talk about her coming onto the Thrive staff team after she graduated from CMU, I jumped at it!

On May 16th, she’ll join the team full time! She’ll concentrate on creating irresistible environments for Thrive Kidz. Environments where kids can learn about Jesus in fun and exciting ways. She has already, in her team at Thrive, begun to build an amazing team of creative folks who pour into kids each Sunday at Thrive and that will just get better and better.

Sam is also raising 100% of her financial support for this position and she is stepping out in faith to do so! Yeah, its pretty amazing.

I wish. I dream. I know someday Thrive will be at the place where we can afford for our staff to not raise funds, but we’re just not there. For our size church, we should be. But, there are some variables working against us and we’re working hard to figure those out.

I am so excited! Our team is excited!

If you would like to help Sam raise support, you can give here. Just click on her name.

The Best is Yet to Come!

What does it take to be a part of Thrive?

I get this question pretty frequently.

Here’s the reality…what does it take to be a part of Thrive? Well, the answer is…

YOU.

It just takes you. You just have to Show Up and let God do the rest.

Thrive Church is a place for people who aren’t really all that interested in God or Church.thrive))church-no-perfect-allowed

  • It’s a place for people who have doubts to come and explore those doubts without being asked to sit in the ‘we’re gonna judge you’ seats.
  • It’s a place for people who are struggling.
  • It’s a place for people who want a different kind of a Church, a Church that’s simple, real and fun. It’s a place for families.
  • It’s a place for singles.
  • It’s a place for College Students.
  • It’s a pace for empty nesters.
  • It’s a place for people who have stalled out in their faith and are looking to experience Jesus in a new and powerful way.
  • It’s a place for fully devoted followers of Jesus who want to put their faith into action.
  • It’s a place where you can be prayed for.
  • It’s a place for people searching for more of Jesus.

So, what do you say? Why don’t you check out Thrive today. We gather on Sunday’s at 9 or 1015 at Celebration Cinema. Just wear whatever you’re comfortable in. Come about 10 minutes early and if you have kids, stop at the Thrive Kidz check in and they will help you.

What does it take to be a part of Thrive? Just you. Come today and be a part.

The REAL reason Thrive Church is moving to Central Michigan University…it may surprise you.

So, Thrive Church is moving! We just announced that! It’s a very exciting time in the history of our Church!!screen-shot-2017-02-10-at-9-38-03-am We’re a portable church. That means, our dedicated
volunteers roll up to a rented movie theater on Sunday mornings, unload and set up. Then, we tear down and the trailers roll away.

In a perfect world, we would find a home of our own. We’re just not at a place financially where we can do that. To either buy land or purchase an old building and renovate.

We were having some significant talks with a possible home, but in the end, we just couldn’t afford it. That’s ok, God provided an amazing space!

That’s why we turned our attention to CMU. But, here’s the deal, here’s why Thrive is really moving to Central Michigan University. Here’s the real reason:

We’re moving for our Kids and future Kids! 

Yeah, no really! Even though the auditorium will be a GREAT place to help people find and follow Jesus, we’re doing it provide an AMAZING space for kids! We believe children are close to the heart of God and because they matter
to God, they should matter to us.
So, we want to have the BEST kids environment we possibly can for our kids at Thrive Church!

That’s the REAL reason! 

Many children ministries across the nation have the tag line…’the best hour of your kids week’.

Here’s the deal. I agree with that. That’s why we’re moving. That’s why we’re raising funds. That’s why we’re others to help us.

BUT…in the long run, we really want the best hour of a kids week to be with their parents! That’s why at Thrive, we encourage and teach that parents are the primary spiritual influencer and the church is number two. Now, that doesn’t mean we don’t want to provide the best environment we possibly can. kids-space

A Field house becomes a GREAT environment for K-5th! 

We’re going to be able to use a giant field house at CMU and its so incredibly exciting to think about how awesome our kids environment will be!

We already have amazing volunteers.

We already have an amazing Thrive Kidz staff team.

Now we have the space.

The only thing we still need is the equipment to make it happen! 

Things like…Portable Walls, Carts for the Portable Walls, Pipe and Drape, A portable stage, Carpets, Mats, Bean Bag Chairs, Toys, Slides, Play things, Tables, Chairs, a Sound System, Computers, Check in Stations, Printers and Banners.

I would be honored if you would pray and ask God if He’s calling you to help us.

If you have any questions, email me directly at jason.raitz@thrivechurchmi.cc.

If you want to give towards this endeavor, you can HERE.

If you’re a Church leader and want to donate equipment, email me at jason.raitz@thrivechurchmi.cc.

We used this space at Easter last year and this is what we were able to do with it back then.

Just imagine the possibilities of an environment where kids are loved, taught about Jesus and have a blast all at the same time!

easter-three

 

 

HUGE EXCITING NEWS and a QUESTION! Thrive Church is Moving to Central Michigan University’s Campus!! Would you HELP US?

You read that right, Thrive Church is moving!!IMG_1810

YES, YES and more YES!

We have been praying about this for over a year! Seeking God! We have been searching and searching for a new home.

Central Michigan University said YES!! 

Currently we rent a movie theater (Celebration Cinema) and its been awesome! But, with our Church growing and movie theaters really not being designed for kids ministry, we decided more than a year ago, it was time to find a new Sunday morning home! We’re sad because we love the theater, but its time!

We’ve asked our local school district if we could rent any of their buildings. They said NO, a little more NO and then a lot more NO. I’m not bitter though. Hah!

We’ve asked a few open buildings in town and they said no.

Then, we went to Central Michigan University! We’ve used CMU before (for Easter and Christmas Eve), yeah, it was awesome!

easter

CMU Said YES!!!!! 

CMU said we could move as early as March 12th! But,  we need to raise some additional funds to purchase the equipment we would need to turn part of a college campus into Thrive Church!

How exciting is that? Just think of the amazing possibilities? We can have a much better chance to reach the 18,000 College Students on campus! And, our Kids Ministry environments will be a MILLION times better and that will give us a better chance to reach families!

There are 80,000 people in Central Michigan without a Church Home! This move is needed because it will give us a greater chance to reach them!

Would you help us?

We need to raise $50,000! Or, have the items below donated! Sometimes I read that number and a wave of shock goes through my body, but then I read through God’s eyes and I know its not all that massive to Him! kids-space

Why $50,000? 

CMU is an exponentially larger space than what we use now! So, the majority of this expense is purchasing Kids Ministry equipment to turn a field house into an amazing Kids Ministry environment!

We need things like:

  • Portable Walls, Portable Carts to hold those walls
  • Another Trailer
  • Carpets and Mats
  • Portable Tents and Portable Fencing
  • Check in Stations, Computers and Printers
  • (4) Stage decks for the Kids Ministry Large Group Stage
  • (2) 55 inch TV’s and Portable Cases for the Kids Ministry Large Group Area
  • Toys, slides, climbers, bean bag chairs
  • Bibles and Supplies
  • Signs for Kids ministry
  • Signs for campus to direct traffic
  • Portable Sound System
  • Lots of Pipe and Drape
  • Drum Set, Keyboard
  • 40 inch TV on a stand
  • Cables, chords and more of that kind of stuff
  • Microphones, Lightings, Stands
  • Monitors

So, Would you help us?

You can give financially to this endeavor HERE. Just select CMU Fund.

You can email any questions to jason.raitz@thrivechurchmi.cc

If your Church would like to donate equipment, we will come and pick it up!!! Just let us know!

Thank you for considering. 

Thrive launched on October 6, 2013 and in that time 172 have gone public with their faith in baptism.

God has just showed up time and time again. But, the reality is, we just can’t make this move without you.

 

Hey Thrive…10 Ways to make this Sunday Off the Charts AHMAZING!

 
OH MY GOODNESS…SUNDAY IS ALMOST HERE!!!!

10 Ways you can make Sunday off the charts AMAZING

1. PLEASE don’t miss this Sunday!! You know, there are 4-6 Sunday’s a year where we plan for longer, invest greater and pray bigger. This is one of those Sundays!! So many amazing things going on!
 
2. Take 5 minutes and send 3 facebook messages or texts to friends about coming this Sunday! Please share info about it on your page. Please like the Thrive Church MI Facebook stuff about this Sunday! Let’s spread the word!
 
3. Would you head to Stadia on facebook and like their post about this Sunday at Thrive? It’s awesome that Stadia believes in us.
 
4. Would you pray like crazy for this Sunday? Pray for 50 new volunteers, 50 new givers. Pray for kids lives to be freed from poverty!! Pray for people to find and follow Jesus! Pray for healing for broken people! img_4907
 
5. BE EARLY! Like 30 minutes early! Come on, please. Don’t miss the CMU Jazz band. Cheer for them and clap!
 
**Be in theater one 3 minutes before it starts!! Don’t miss all the hard work the band has put in on the opening song!
 
6. Come hungry. We’re grilling! 
 
7. Wear your favorite team’s jersey. Dress your kids like super heros.fullsizerender
 
8. Sit up front, and move to the center of aisles please 🙂 Make room for guests!! Clap, sing, cheer and laugh!!
 
9. If you knew how honored I feel and how special it is for Greg Nettle and his daughter, Tabitha to be coming, wow!! Greg is a mentor and friend and this leader is the real deal! Please don’t miss him!! Say hi! Stadia, the organization he leads has been so awesome to Thrive!!
 
10. Sponsor a child! Sponsor two! We can all sacrifice! $38 bucks is all it takes and you will FREE a life from poverty! LET’s DO THIS THRIVE!!!
Check out this link for more information!
 
I LOVE YOU! I’m proud of you!
 
Jason Raitz
 
PS…Some of you have asked about giving to help with the move to CMU! That’s awesome! If just 300 of us gave an extra $166, we would have all we need to make the environments amazing! You should have received some info in the mail about this, if not, let me know!

A Beautiful Post by my wife about Winona’s Death, Moving Forward and the miracle of Kai’s Adoption.

Today is a bittersweet day for me. A year ago we were plowing through the adoption paperwork and checklists to bring Winona Mae home. We had a crib, stroller and had just bought paint for her room and had planned to paint over the weekend! Things were moving forward and we couldn’t wait to hold her in our arms!IMG_3316

The afternoon of 2/1/16 I had emailed our case worker a question about some paperwork and she replied right away with ‘are you home? Can you call me?’ I wasn’t too worried since I had requested a PHE level update on Winona and thought she wanted to give those to me. What she would tell me instead was something I never expected and still today hurts to think about. Winona had passed away…all we know is a virus was going through her orphanage and her little body just couldn’t fight it off. I was in shock, I was pacing the street in front of our house talking to our caseworker and wondering how I was going to go inside and tell the kids? When I hung up with our caseworker I called Jay and told him. We didn’t talk too much cause we were both in tears. Going in the house to tell the kids after talking to Jay was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.

That night we were surrounded by friends and family who grieved with us, sat with us and held us while we cried.

The next few weeks were a blur as we tried to process the news. We questioned moving forward with the adoption process…how could we without Winona? How would we even begin to choose another child? Did we even want to move forward? Should we wait a few months, a year or stop altogether?

After praying and talking about it we decided to move forward with the home study and see what happened.

Fast forward a couple weeks and the picture of a little boy who also had PKU was sent to me by a fellow adopt parent who was adopting from his orphanage. We felt a connection to him but he was with a different placing agency and at the place we were at we didn’t feel called to switch agencies. Again we questioned the journey we were on but still felt God telling us to move forward and trust him. 邹宏凯+(1)We looked at other files of kids with our agency but neither of us felt really called to any of them (they were all precious and needing a forever family, we just knew we weren’t theirs). I was just about ready to call it quits cause it was getting to hard emotionally when I received an email and FB message late on a Saturday night from our case worker saying she had a file of a little boy on a 72 hour hold for us if we wanted to review his file. I opened the email and there was the picture of the little boy we both felt a connection to earlier! Everyone else was asleep but all I could do was look over the pictures attached to his file and smile!

The little boy in the file and pictures was Kai! The next day after a long Sunday (we had Thrive, then family over for Bek’s birthday) I emailed our case worker our LOI (letter of intent) for Kai to be sent to China. A couple weeks later we received our PA (pre-approval), and as you all know almost 2 weeks ago we brought him home!

When I think back to the beginning of our journey and how we almost quit when Winona passed away I get sad thinking of the love, joy and happiness we would have missed out on with Kai had we not listened to God’s voice and moved forward even though it hurt! Even though we wanted to stop cause it was too hard and we couldn’t see the end!

I am so glad we were obedient and faithful through the hurt and pain and and so thankful for Kai and for the love and joy he has already brought to our family in just the short amount of time we have known him!

I am excited to see what God has in store for this little boy who has captured our hearts! We still grieve not getting to hold Winona by know she is free of sickness and pain in heaven and will one day meet her! She will always hold a part of our hearts and will forever be a part of our journey to Kai!

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