Abby Kirkham Iverson - Thrive Mission Update


My dear ministry teammates, 

Welcome to my office! I would love if I could actually sit down with each of you in these cozy chairs with a hot cup of tea and share all that is going on. However, since I can't, please just imagine it as you read. You could even grab some coffee or tea to enjoy. I have put in the questions you might ask me as we talked so keep reading! I can't wait to share what God has been doing for this new ministry. Thank you for reading, for praying, and for supporting, you mean so much to me!
"Where do you work?"
Peter and I have the joy of working in a beautiful co-working space called Haw Creek Commons. This cheerful and bright church basement has everything we could hope for: quiet work space, private meeting rooms, and a vibrant community. It has been such blessing to meet others engaged in the Asheville community just from doing business out of the same co-working space. We are excited for our partnership with HCC that we expect to develop into running trips and retreats together! (See photos of the different work areas within Haw Creek Commons)
"What does a typical day look like?"
As you would expect with a start-up ministry, no two days look the same. However, there are a few consistencies to my work week. Peter and I spend one morning a week discussing what we've each been working on independently as well as praying for the ministry, each other, and our ministry partners. We frequently spend a day during the week out in the woods scouting new hikes or campsites to be used in the coming year. The most exciting new part of our week has been our "trip planning meetings" in which we take a request from someone wanting us to run a trip and craft a trip proposal for their group. 
This has been consistently our favorite part of 2019 as we look forward to the trips we can offer in the coming year and take joy in planning them out! 
"So there are trips planned for 2019 already?"
YES! We are thankful God is already opening doors for us to be working with several different groups in the community despite our very recent start date! There are many we are in the preliminary proposal and planning stages with, so I look forward to updating you on those as they develop. The first official Thrive Adventures Asheville trip will be a group of high school guys from a local private school at the beginning of March!
We will be facilitating a three day retreat focusing on what we call the "Real vs. The Ideal" at a beautiful house in Sapphire, NC that has been made available by some very generous partners of Thrive! Through outdoor experiential learning and time spent together, these young men will explore the gap between expectation and reality as well as how God's grace and truth speak into that dichotomy. 
"How is your Operations Director role going?"
I love it! The tasks and projects that most people cringe at (organizing information, coming up with systems of forms, squaring away details) make my heart sing! I have enjoyed working on the finer details of starting a new ministry with Dan Litchfield, our National Director who guides on our Maine team. My most recent on-going project has been to create and add to a Staff Handbook that consolidates all of our information for staff. This handbook will be increasingly useful as we continue to grow and gain new staff members! 
"What is your funding status?"
There are two aspects to that question. My personal funding is currently stable, but the need for more ministry partners in the near future is evident. I am praying the Lord would reveal more people in Asheville interested in investing in this ministry and my part in it. As far as the team goes, we are currently pursuing several grants to help fund our need for some outdoor gear, specifically two whitewater rafts! Later this month I will send out more information on how you might be able to help us move forward with those grants.
"Where can I see more about Thrive?"
Follow us on social media and our website! We are rapidly moving into a place where we are able to advertise and display what Thrive Adventures is up to. Our website is up and we are actively building our Facebook and Instagram accounts. 
These platforms will help us share what is happening through Thrive as well as connect with potential new groups to lead. Please use the buttons below to check out our website, Instagram, and Facebook page. Your follows and likes can help boost our page visibility! 
"How are you and Mark doing in Asheville?"
Life in Asheville feels a bit more familiar! We have been here now over a year and are enjoying knowing the city a little better. We have settled into a church, joined a city group in that church, and are becoming members this month! We are so grateful for some close friends in our neighborhood and thankful for our marriage. Please continue to pray for relationships here to deepen as we both live far from friends and family we love. Come visit us, we love hosting! 
Prayers & Praises 
1. Our first official trip of the season will be March 4th - 6th! Please be praying for the young men attending and our planning/preparations. Ask that the Spirit would lead our work and that those present would grow closer to Him. 
2. Praise God with us for the amazing doors He has opened for us thus far. February is the month of meetings and we couldn't be more grateful to have opportunities to share what we can do with other people and groups!
3. Pray with us as we begin pursuing grants to fund some of the gear we still need in order to offer whitewater rafting trips. Ask the Lord to provide fruitful connections. 
Partners in prayer and support, I'm incredibly grateful for you! Please let me know how I can be praying for you or celebrating in life with you! Never hesitate to reach out and know that I care for you deeply. Your part of this ministry is so clear to me!  
                                                                    - abby
abby iverson
director of operations, guide, & facilitator