Mike & Fern Aspen – A Christmas Challenge
Culture seems to keep our hearts busy with things that lack eternal focus, even during the holidays. If we don’t pay attention, we’ll miss opportunities to share the incredible and life-changing gift of a relationship with Jesus.
Mike and Fern Aspen have been part of Access Church since moving to Florida from Minnesota in the fall of 2014. Their marriage of 39 years is full of excitement and adventure. Fern is a professor of nursing, but previously worked for many years as a Certified Nurse Midwife and has about 1,000 births under her belt. Mike is a retired U.S. Army helicopter pilot and worked for Canadian Pacific Railway. Mike and Fern have a son and three granddaughters, and they are currently sponsoring 11—yes, that’s right, 11 international children through Compassion International and World Vision.
When Mike and Fern arrived in Florida, they looked for a church with the same vision and passion as their previous church. They wanted a fun environment with great worship for kids and adults. Their first impression of Access was that it was exactly what they were looking for. They loved the friendly vibe, upbeat music, and Bible teaching. Since they wanted the feeling of ownership that comes with serving the church community, they joined the Strategic Service team responsible for cleaning the church. They started out cleaning monthly, but their passion for serving and for creating an environment where people feel comfortable has now led them to clean the church weekly.
Last Christmas, God presented Mike and Fern with a challenge through a Christmas message at Access. They were encouraged to purposefully invite someone to Access every week. For many, this can be a frightening undertaking. We can all easily list reasons we don’t have the time or gifts to take on a challenge such as this. But it’s inspiring to hear that each week since the challenge, Fern and Mike have taken one or two Guest Information Brochures from the auditorium chair backs with the intention of inviting someone new to learn about a relationship with Jesus.
Fern said, “We keep brochures in our car and in my purse. God has been so faithful to us in our lives and we love being part of what God is doing at Access. Once you start inviting people to be part of this community, it gets easier!”
Mike and Fern want to challenge their church family to invite someone new to our Community Christmas Celebration services this weekend. It could be the most important thing you do amidst the hustle and bustle of Christmas preparations. And it might just change someone’s life!