Missions Update: Medford, Oregon

Bellevue has an ongoing partnership with Living Hope Church in Medford, Oregon, an area of our country that is beautiful in scenery–but largely living in darkness. A Bellevue team traveled to Medford October 18 to minister alongside Living Hope. Read the summary below from participants on this trip and pray about how you can engage in the Missionary Task right here in our country.

We travel to areas like Medford, Oregon, where a church body like Living Hope Church needs support and encouragement from other churches and believers like us. From what I experienced in Medford and on the campus of Southern Oregon University, the Gospel and the Church are not as readily available to people as they are in the Bible Belt. Although the local church body is small, most of the believers are newer in their faith. However, these few are working faithfully in a plentiful harvest. The work, therefore, can seem overwhelming to them at times. As part of the Church family, we can be such an encouragement as we literally come alongside them in their ministry and give them the support they need to keep ministering to an area that is very much void of the Gospel.

Pastor Shawn Snyder and Living Hope Church are new partners with Bellevue in the Northwest. One ministry we helped them develop this week is Engage, Living Hope’s college ministry, focusing on students at Southern Oregon University. Jordin Crow, the Living Hope staff member overseeing Engage, looks to engage students who have little understanding of Jesus or no relationship with Him.

We came alongside Jordin this past week to help organize and facilitate Engage’s main event called National Treasure. This creates an opportunity to connect college students to Engage and help them build good relationships and community as they start another year of college. Jordin and Pastor Shawn use National Treasure to bring each college student “one step closer to Jesus.”

Southern Oregon University comprises such a diversity of beliefs. Mostly, those beliefs don’t align with the biblical view of how God created and designed us to live. Students are encouraged to live as their feelings and emotions would take them. This, of course, sounds great to those who haven’t tasted and seen who God is and His perfect design for our lives.

I spoke with a student on campus one evening while we were helping facilitate National Treasure. I explained to her where we were from and why we were here: I told her we came to support and help Living Hope Church and their on-campus Christian college club, Engage. She expressed how great that was and was really surprised that we would come such a long way for only one week to help in that capacity.

But Jesus says, “I am giving you a new commandment, that you love one another; just as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples: if you have love for one another” (John 13:3435). Coming to Oregon to help our brothers and sisters in Christ helps fulfill this Great Commandment.

Learn more about upcoming missions opportunities at the 2022 Missions Weekend, taking place at Bellevue October 16.

Contributing Writers: Ginny Tibbels and Tyler Oliver