Game Piece - faith.png

God Is Real, and He has a plan for your life

Every Thursday afternoon, just in time to counteract my end-of-week, mid-day doldrums, I hear the familiar sound of 75 joyful voices wafting up through the creaky floorboards to my office. It’s worship day at Fortress, and our sweet kids  - who love to sing! - are raising the rafters with Mandisa's "Unfinished".

"He started something good and I'm gonna believe it
He started something good and He's gonna complete it
So I'll celebrate the truth - His work in me ain't through
I'm just unfinished."

But it's when they settle down, lower their voices and sing sweetly about the steadfast, assured goodness of our God that I get emotional.

“You're a good, good father. (It's who you are, it's who you are, it's who you are.)
And I'm loved by you. (It's who I am, it's who I am, it's who I am.)”

Some of our kids don’t know their dads. Others have fathers who are in prison, have died young, or are in and out of their lives. Hearing them sing and believe Chris Tomlin's words that God is a good, good Father and that their identity rests in that brings tears to my eyes every Thursday.

A couple of years ago, two of our students were suffering the trauma of their mother’s sudden death by overdose. It rocked their foundation, leaving them feeling vulnerable and numb. They retreated emotionally, becoming withdrawn and silent. But on Thursdays, we watched in awe as they both stepped outside their safe cocoons to sing, taking obvious comfort in the words to another Chris Tomlin hymn,

"And if Our God is for us, then who could ever stop us?
And if our God is with us, then what can stand against?”

Fortress kids praying as a group.

Fortress kids praying as a group.

We don’t adhere to any specific denominational doctrine. Instead, we learn about the choices (good and bad) God's people made in the Bible. We pray that our kids see God living in the staff and volunteers at Fortress, that they believe He is real and that He cares for them. We teach them that He has a plan for them that they can’t even imagine the greatness of … but He still expects them to do their part. This means a variety of things: listen to your Mom. Respect adults. Treat your peers with kindness. Extend grace. Do your best. Eat your veggies. Do your homework. Grow up and be an awesome adult who loves God.

To drive this home, our kids recite our Fortress mantra every afternoon:

“Today I will do my best to be my best.
What I do today will make a difference in my life.
My choices will affect those around me.
I will listen. I will follow directions. I will be honest.
I will respect my Fortress family.
I will learn something today, because today matters
and my future is built one day at a time.
My future is important because
I am a child of God with the ability to achieve my dreams.”

Those last words: I am a child of God with the ability to achieve my dreams…those words are the very heart of everything we do at Fortress. That belief is the solid foundation on which our entire ministry stands.

"He started something good and I'm gonna believe it
He started something good and He's gonna complete it
So I'll celebrate the truth - His work in me ain't through
I'm just unfinished"

-Stacy Agee, Director of Communications and Development


PARTNERING CHURCHES

Church groups from across the state (and beyond) serve us in so many ways, and we could not do what we do without their support. Here's a rundown of churches who have partnered with us this year.

Monthly Support:
Legacy Church of Christ
Lake Cities Church of Christ
St. Jo Church of Christ

Summer Mission Groups:
Highland Church of Christ (Abilene, TX)
St. Jo Church of Christ
Henrietta Church of Christ
Carter Lake Road Church of Christ
Woodland West Church of Christ
Little Rock Church (Arkansas)
West Side Church of Christ (Searcy, AR)
League Street Church of Christ (Sulphur Springs)
Cloverdale Church of Christ (Searcy, AR)
Decatur Church of Christ
Southern Hills Church of Christ (Abilene)

Work and Special Event Groups:
Lakeside Church of Christ
Southside Church of Christ
ACU Alumni
Woodland West Church of Christ
Fort Worth Christian School
Turning Point Church
First Baptist Euless

Read a letter from one of our youth ministers on the spiritual impact Fortress has on his kids.

West Side youth during our daily prayer drive, which makes a stop at picturesque Hillside Park.

West Side youth during our daily prayer drive, which makes a stop at picturesque Hillside Park.

 Students use all sorts of methods to complete their memory work in our daily Bible lab.

 Students use all sorts of methods to complete their memory work in our daily Bible lab.