By Liz Powers, Partnership Coordinator

Over at Next Step we certainly define May as a month of ‘Expectation’. As we nail down the final details of our summer program, we are filled with anticipation as to how God will arrange them to expand His Kingdom over the next few months. In the whirlwind of countless to-do lists and last minute preparations this month brings, I have come to deeply value the discipline of reflection. Taking a moment to consider the thousands of students and community members who will have the opportunity to take their next steps in faith this summer grounds me back to the heart beat of this mission- to encounter and embody Jesus Christ through service.

I don’t know the specifics of what you are looking forward to this summer. Maybe you are anticipating going on a mission trip, serving on summer staff, having a team work on your home, or maybe it’s something totally different. But would you take a minute to reflect with me? First, join me in celebration for what’s on the horizon here in Lorain County. Second, take time to reflect personally using the provided prompts.

Pre- Summer

Every May, the city of Lorain hosts a service day called Lorain Pride Day. Various individuals and groups from around the city join together for a little spring cleaning around our community. This year we celebrate a new clean up site, one very near and dear to our hearts at Next Step. Streator Park has been home to our summer children’s program over the last four years, and on May 20th this area will be filled with local volunteers working together to invest in this neighborhood. We are certainly anticipating the opportunity to kick off our summer program following the lead of local volunteers.

Personal reflection: What is the Lord doing right now in your life to prepare you for the upcoming months?


Two hundred and thirty five is a big number. It is the number of individuals currently anticipating their mission trip to Lorain County this summer. Two hundred and thirty five individuals will connect with Lorain residents to share Christ. Two hundred and thirty five individuals will invest their time and energy into embodying Jesus Christ through home repair this summer. The potential for life transformation existing within this group is incredible. What a gift to be joined by so many other believers in Lorain County this summer!

Personal reflection: What resources/ skills/ abilities do you possess to share Christ with others this summer?


Seven homeowners will welcome Next Step volunteers into their lives this summer. Each of these families are completely unique with their own stories, experiences, world views, and personalities. What an opportunity we have to learn from, work alongside, and befriend these amazing residents of Lorain County. We celebrate these opportunities to embody Christ by working in home repair alongside new friends this summer!

Personal reflection: What opportunities to embody Christ will be available to you over the next couple months?

Next Step Ministries