“Unfold God’s Word, So All Can Understand”
Jesus - The Light of the World -seen, understood and loved now & by future generations.
Who We Are & Our Task:
We are a ministry of Creative Communicators called to intentionally engage global urban culture - primarily youth and young adults - with the Gospel of Jesus Christ by producing, translating, teaching and proclaiming God’s Word so all can understand. Our identity & call are founded on the belief that God’s Word is transformational and needs to be accessible and understandable to all people.
We believe that when God’s Word is communicated relevantly, it shines His Light through His truth and displaces the spiritual darkness we all experience a part from knowing God. Our task is to “Unfold Him” through H Word to this digital age that presents many barriers to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as well as unprecedented communication opportunities to send out God’s Word.
Executive Director, Creative Director & Teacher
Esteban Shedd leads the various creative endeavors of Streetlights, from the overarching vision to its artistic endeavors. In all things, the communication of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the focus. Specifically, Esteban loves teaching creatively and mobilizing others towards Gospel ministry. As a Chicago native, he wants to see his city know and love Christ, but this vision goes beyond Chicago as he sees the opportunities internationally for Gospel mission - especially in large urban centers. He is a husband to his wife Iris and a father to 4 children, as well as a member of Edgewater Baptist Church in Chicago, IL.
LOREN LA LUZ
Vice Director, Finance
Loren oversees the day-to-day operations of Streetlights, manages partnerships, donor relations, finance, travel, and the Streetlights online store. Whether drumming for Alert312, working the cameras on set, crunching numbers, or loving on people, Loren is dedicated and committed to accomplishing it all with passion, integrity, and excellence unto the Lord. A Chicago native, Loren has been married to the love of his life, Kassandra and has been blessed with five beautiful children. He is a part of the body at Chicago Tabernacle.
Director of Audio, Social Marketing & Internships
Aaron is the Director of Audio, Social Marketing, and Internships at Streetlights. Wired to do 'creative things' Aaron has the truest delight in creatively communicating God's Word, whether producing the music for the next Audio Bible, researching the latest social marketing trends or training the newest interns in the studio. Aaron sees all of these tasks as valuable means to make God known. Aaron is married to Susana and a father to his two children. He is also a leader at New Life Community Church Logan Square in Chicago.
The simple vision of Streetlights began in 2006 with the desire for a group of young men
in Chicago, with many social and educational barriers, to know Jesus and understand His Word. A step towards that vision was made a reality when God's Word was recorded word-for-word and set to a Hip Hop soundtrack for use in the next Bible study. After listening to the recording of God's Word in this unique format, the difference of engagement with God’s Word was like night and day. The young men not only understood the passages they heard, but they all participated in the profound dialogue about the spiritual truths covered. The idea matured into a desire to produce God’s Word audibly in a format that they, and thousands of young people just like them, could hear and internalize for themselves with no barriers of illiteracy. Word & Music had proved to be a powerful combination to deliver God’s Word.
The need for multimedia Bible translation and teaching for this urban generation - one primarily influenced by digital learning - was not confined to this one story or neighborhood in Chicago. Ministries around Chicago said, “We need this! We are facing the same learning barriers as you are. We need God’s Word produced and taught in multimedia formats too!”
We pursued the endeavor by faith and wove the vision of Streetlights into an established ministry - GRIP Outreach For Youth - in 2009, and began to create the Streetlights New Testament Audio Bible. Years into the process we added other multimedia teaching materials to unfold God's Word to the fast-growing multimedia learning age. The resources spread and were reaching youth, young adults and ministries worldwide.
Now upon completing a decade of Streetlights ministry, we celebrate having produced vast amounts of God’s Word in audio, video, and print form. The second season of the ministry has begun, and we are continuing our call to translate and teach the Bible through various strategies by adding new endeavors requested from the body of Christ worldwide: new languages, direct-to-palm video teaching, continued Gospel proclamation and multiplying the next generation of Gospel communicators.
We sense the increasing urgency and the divine opportunity to engage the unengaged and under-resourced with Gospel communication. Vast pockets of society globally do not know the Light of God found in Jesus and His Word.
Streetlights exists to this end; that "Jesus - The Light of the World - is seen, understood and loved now & by future generations."
STREETLIGHTS CORE VALUES & PHILOSOPHY OF MINISTRY
Humility: Individually & Team
Streetlights is God’s ministry and He has been gracious to include us. Each of us has strengths and weakness, needs for growth, and complimentary gifts. We are better when we lift God and neighbor above ourselves and work together.
Friendship & Love
Unity is achieved through humble Christ-like love and submission. Friendship is a great foundation to have for these characteristics to thrive. We like to say, “It's just as much about loving people in the process as it is to produce anything.”
Spirit-led & Prayerful
It is easy to assume our next step and do the next project, but prayerfully hearing what God want us to do with each endeavor is a major value at Streetlights. This is affirmed by hearing the Lord together and seeing his provision.
Creative & Administrative Excellence
We want to do all things in service to our great God and continue to grow as we work and serve.
Local Church Focus
Jesus loves the local church, and we do too. All of our efforts are meant to serve the local church and respond to the needs it has for Kingdom Growth where it aligns with our mission.
PHILOSOPHY OF MINISTRY
Serve the Under-Served
Streetlights does not make strategic choices to compete with industry lanes or profit competition within the publishing world. Matter of fact, our endeavors serve mostly those who typically can not buy or give. Our “win" is letting the Spirit show us locally and globally who needs God’s Word and responding accordingly.
We determined early on to have a “Freely Given” model, and God has sustained the ministry. We want no financial barriers to impede the engagement of God’s Word.
Growth happens through partnerships within the global Church of Christ, not just on our own. Partnerships are a priority. We also see growth happening to match missional strategies by listening and responding to global needs and the Spirit led teams that can work alongside to accomplish them.
Produce & Proclaim Authentically
The global and diverse body of Christ should have its authentic voice represented in our Gospel witness.
We create, communicate and minister by empowering this diverse voice as we work together. We celebrate the many accents, faces, and backgrounds that are united by God’s Son, Jesus. StreetLights Team