Summer is Here!

 Hi everyone!

I hope this month's update finds you all well! I know this summer is a bit hotter than normal, but, despite that, I hope and pray that through it you've been able to find some rest and enjoyable moments in it. 

For me, so far, this summer has had several words to associate with it-with steadfastness and patience as the headliners. So, while I normally would be using this time to update you all on the Wylie campus, I want to instead take my updates this summer to reflect on what these lessons have entailed so far (and also because I'm not on campus technically this summer). Steadfastness was very much a theme in June, so I'll be covering that today, while patience has been a bit now. Regardless, I have a strong feeling both are going to shape a lot of my ministry come this fall. 


Everyone handles transitions differently. Where there is a beginning of something, despite how good it is, there is always something ending. To me, this summer has had many of those transitions (and even some that started back in April for me). I moved out of my old house, left my roommates who had become dear friends, lived by myself for a bit, ended the apprenticeship, stepped into a senior staff role with FOCUS, got married, gained new family members, I now live with a guy instead of girl roommates, and this is all just to tip the iceberg. Needless to say, many things have changed in my life in the span of 3 months, and despite it all being really good things, they all have led to an end of something. 

I no longer am single, I no longer get to live with a household of girls, I no longer get to juggle just my own family into my life, and I no longer get to make decisions based solely on me. And, again, this is just the beginning of things I've been beginning to process. To clarify as well, none of these endings are again bad, they genuinely have just been a lot for me to handle. 

In the midst of all this transition, I've found myself grieving ends and struggling to grasp with what to do moving forward. I've felt vulnerable and pretty shifting in my emotions and thoughts, which has been hard to grapple with. I desire control and being stable (to the point of perfection I might add)-especially for my new husband. The last thing I want is to make this transition harder for him as well. 

Yet, I can notice God pruning the branches of my heart to be more reliant on him. In an earlier conversation this summer with the Collin staff team, our director, Garrett, encouraged us to think about whether we let circumstances determine who God is in our lives. Should our circumstances determine how good he is? Or should it be the other way around? Ultimately, Garrett got at the point that immaturity is determining who God is based on how good or bad things are around us. Paul faced all kinds of suffering, and still had more peace than most because his outlook wasn't determined by the suffering, but by the hope of Christ. Like, wow. So, since that conversation, I've been praying for God to help refine me in that. To not let circumstances determine the truths I believe about God, and I've been miraculously seeing the fruit of that. 

I've been seeing God show me through different frustrations and trials that he still is good, and always will be. When you ask for something, gosh dang does he provide. This summer, my emotions have been ever shifting, but, he is not, and that has given me so much more hope and peace this summer than I ever could imagine. From steadfastness, I get to make the choice to react to situations out of a belief that he is good despite my emotions telling me otherwise.

This is still something I'm learning, but I hope this ministers to you too. In the meantime, here are some photos from June I want to share with you all!

I feel like this photo explains the two of us so well!

Our friend Jesse took these beautiful photos at our wedding!

We did it! The following are some pictures from our honeymoon that leave me astounding at God's creation.

Here's an after event we had for the students at TNF. We did speed friending for students from different campuses to get to know each other.

FOCUS has it's own bible study called FOJ, and this summer, we decided to do a weekly training for the Collin students over it. That way they can be prepared to teach it other students.

Connor and I also got a snake! He's name is Tobias (or Toby for short), and he seriously is the sweetest thing! I know not a lot of people like snakes, but we got him in hopes to educate people more on reptiles and how a lot of them can be friendly.

Again, thank you each so much for your support and prayers. I'm almost at 100% of my fundraising goal for this upcoming year! So, thank you to everyone who is continuing/joining for the 22-23 school year! It really means the world, and I'm so excited to be sharing with you all what God is consistently doing on the Wylie campus. Also, if you know someone who would be potentially open to joining my support team, let me know! I'd love to get time with them, even if they say no. 

Love you all,

Orion Clements