Summer LINK Testimony: New Branch Church in Atlanta, GA


My name is Jonathan Mitchell and I am leading the inaugural Summer Link Atlanta team which consists of myself and Griffin Holloway. Although our team is small in number, the Lord is still using our efforts for His glory and to advance His Kingdom. Further, God has been faithful to grow myself and Griffin throughout this summer.  One of the major serve efforts that we helped lead was NewBranch’s“Serve Dacula” week which was July 11 through July 16. The goal of this week was to show the love of Christ to our city by serving in a variety of ways and also to share the love of Christ with our mouths as we encounter people in the community. A few of the ways we served the city was by laying and spreading mulch in two of our local parks, two free car washes, assisting in some administrative tasks at Dacula High School, collecting food for children in low income homes, putting on a Backyard Bible Club, serving in a local nursing home, praying for and blessing City Hall, the police department, and the fire department with gift baskets filled with snacks, and handing out water and freeze pops in local parks along with invitations to our Community Fun Night.

We concluded Serve Dacula week with a free Community Fun Night for our city. We had hot dogs, inflatables, raffle giveaways, cotton candy, popcorn, sno-cones, and games for families to enjoy together. It was very encouraging to see several people that we encountered in the parks throughout the week come to our Community Fun Night. Throughout the night, Griffin and I went around asking people to take a Spiritual Survey. Many people were willing to complete the survey and this sparked many great conversations. We were able to share the gospel with several people as we walked through the survey with them! There were also many people we spoke with who were searching for a church home and interested in attending NewBranch. In fact, one of the families who came to Community Fun Night also came to church the next morning. Please join us in praying for the people we engaged with the gospel at Community Fun Night.

Each week, Griffin and I have been meeting up and one of the things we have been discussing is Mark Dever’s book Discipling. It is a simple, yet very helpful book on “how to help others follow Jesus.” I have learned several things, been reminded of many truths, and been provided with helpful ideas to use with the guys I am discipling. It has also challenged Griffin to begin discipling some of the youth at his church in Valdosta, GA when he returns this August. Further, it has provided Griffin with a framework to begin discipling others.

One other thing Griffin and I have been working through this summer is sermon preparation. Griffin will have the opportunity to preach to our youth ministry on Wednesday July 20. We have been working through the text together for the past month during our weekly meetings. This will be another great opportunity for Griffin to earn some valuable ministry experience.

It has been such a joy to serve the Lord alongside Griffin under the leadership of NewBranch Community Church! We have both earned some meaningful ministry experience, been able to lead in a variety of ways, and grown in our walks with Jesus. We have been able to do each of these things together with our brothers and sisters at NewBranch Community Church.

Please visit the Generation LINK blog to see more Summer LINK updates.