Back in the South…

12 08 2008

So, I’m finally back home. The 10 weeks spent in Michigan were amazing and I wouldn’t trade them for anything. The experience I got with the Deaf community is absolutely priceless. The things I saw God do were mind blowing!

VBS at the church went very well. It was a very busy week with very busy kids, but it was totally worth every bit of the time and energy spent. Our preschoolers were awesome kids and lots of fun to teach. There was a great turn out overall and praise God for perfect weather all week…it did get a little chilly toward the end of the week, but the rain held off until after VBS.

I made some incredible friends and gained experience that a lot of people never get the chance to have. God has taught me so much this summer. I won’t say it was an easy summer…there were hard days and difficult people sometimes…but God was and is faithful to get me through even the roughest days. Thank you to everyone who supported me…there are way too many to begin listing names…you know who you are. Thank you so much for your encouraging words and prayers throughout my time in Michigan!


New Pictures Posted!!!

4 08 2008

Check out my new pictures that are posted on the “pictures” page. These are the ones from my collection that best represent my summer. I hope you enjoy them and take some time to pray a quick prayer for each person you see…ask God to work in a special way in that person’s life…the names aren’t listed, but God’s so cool that He knows their names.

I’ll do a quick update on VBS while I’m here. We’ve finished 2 days on Outrigger Island and things are going very well. They are having a great turn out. I’m not sure on the numbers, but they’ve got a large number of children attending. I’m working in what was supposed to be the 3’s, 4’s, and 5’s class…due to a lack of workers, we became the birth-5 class. Our first night, we had 11 children, I think. The kids learned about God using Moses to part the Red Sea and lead the Israelites out of Egypt. We had the workers to handle things so the night went smoothly. We ended up not having enough time to do everything we wanted to do with the kids…so we had to cut out a bit. Overall, the night went great and we had lots of fun with crafts and games and such. Tonight was our “2nd wave.” The kids learned about the birth of Jesus. We had 16 kids (2-5) plus a baby and we were missing some helpers. It was a great problem to have but a little crazy to say the least. We had so many kids that I think it was a bit overwhelming for some of them. Tonight was definitely the more difficult evening. Even though we had more kids, we managed to get through things quicker and had too much time. So we’ve talked as teachers and figured out a game plan for tomorrow night…we’ll see how it works. I’ll let you know how the rest of the week goes! Pray that God will stir in the hearts of these kids this week! Thanks for your prayers! : )

My last couple of weeks here…

31 07 2008

So I am in my last couple of weeks here in Michigan. I’m working a backyard Bible club at the house I stay at. We’ve had 9-10 kids each day. Really pray for these kids…we know of at least 3 or 4 who aren’t Christians and today was the day where we share the plan of salvation through the ABC’s (Admit, Believe, and Commit). Pray that God will begin growing the seeds that have been sown this week.

The pastor at the church I’m at had a stint put in during Sunday School this past Sunday. He had a heart attack a few years ago and went to the hospital with chest pains. He’s doing very well and is spending some time at home getting some good quality rest. Keep him in your prayers as he continues to recover.

Over the past 2 weeks, I’ve spent a couple hours a day for about 5 days with a Deaf-Blind lady from church. My mission with her was to teach her how to operate PowerPoint to help with Deaf worship services. Praise God for His provision of clear communication! We had our rough moments that were frustrating for both of us, but I can definitely say that she can successfully create a PowerPoint presentation now! I think it was a great feeling of accomplishment for both of us when we saw the finished product! It was awesome…a challenge, no doubt…but totally worth it to see how proud and excited she was about her work.

The church VBS will begin Sunday night and continue through Thursday night. They’re expecting quite a few people. This is a VBS for the whole family…not just the kids. The theme is “Outrigger Island” with all the Hawaiian tropical stuff. I’m very excited! I’m working with a great team in the preschool department with 3’s, 4’s, and 5’s. We have some very cool stuff planned for these kids! Pray for all the leaders as they prepare to share the love of Christ with these kids through VBS. Pray for my boyfriend as he flies tomorrow. He’s coming up from Kentucky to help teach the youth group during VBS. God can do amazing things through VBS! Pray that God will really speak to all the hearts of the people involved in a very special way.

That’s the update for now…as I get more information for you, I’ll definitely keep you posted! : ) Thanks for your prayers!

I Stand Amazed…

22 07 2008

So I wanted to share this song with you…we sang this song at the college worship service that I went to this past Sunday evening and it just stuck out to me more that night that it had before. I’m not sure why, but I just felt like I was supposed to share this with you. It’s an old hymn, but stilll beautiful and an amazing song of worship. Enjoy a time of worship!

This is just a worship song that I absolutely love! It makes me smile everytime I hear it…take some time to praise God for being who He is!

SBCD and the happenings since…

22 07 2008

I know it’s been a little while since I updated…sorry…things have been a little too busy for blogging. As you know, I went to St. Louis last week for the Southern Baptist Conference for the Deaf. It was awesome! I made a lot of connections with people and resources that I, otherwise, would not have made. During the week, we attended several workshops. The first day, the deaf minister I went with asked if I wanted her to voice what was being signed since most of the workshops were deaf-led. I told her that I thought I’d just try to see how well I could do on my own. I was so excited at the end of the first day when I had gone to all the workshops without someone voicing for me. I could understand!!! I was super pumped. It may not seem like a big deal, but for me, it totally was. While I was there, I met another summer missionary from NAMB serving in a Deaf ministry in North Carolina along with a girl that attends WKU…it’s a small world. : ) Overall, the week was amazing and I really feel like I learned a lot from the interpreters and Deaf people who were attending. I praise God that I was given the opportunity to go to this event!

You may remember a previous post where I talked about having breakfast with a Deaf-Blind woman from MBC. I spent some more time with her in St. Louis and we made some plans for my last couple of weeks here. She has Usher’s Syndrome which is where the person is born deaf and their vision gets progressively worse…a sort of tunnel vision…like looking through a straw. Right now, she still has enough vision to operate a computer. She loves to email! The Deaf minister at the church wants to get her more involved with the ministry so I started with lessons on PowerPoint this morning. I’m going to work with her 3 days a week until she learns how to run the program. She’ll be putting together announcement PowerPoints for the monthly Deaf Fellowship. The first lesson went really well…we had our moments of miscommunication, but we cleared it up and went on. We worked for 2 hours today and we’ll do that for the rest of the week. She’s learning very quickly and I think she’ll be ready to do things on her own by the end of the week…beginning of next week at the latest. Pray for both of us to have patience while working through these lessons. I will say this, it’s not an easy task to teach a Deaf-Blind person how to run PowerPoint : ) I’ve been blessed with a student who learns quickly! Praise God!

This week is also being spent in preparation for Backyard Bible Club here at the house I’m living in for the neighborhood kids. I’ll be leading crafts for that. The theme is “Cactus Canyon”…a cowboy theme. The following week will be VBS at the church…the theme there is “Outrigger Island.” I’m working with the preschoolers there. Things are coming along well for both sessions. Please keep both weeks in your prayers. Keep the leaders in your prayers as we share God’s Word with these children who will attend each night. Pray that the children will have open hearts to hear what God wants to teach them. Pray for safe travel for those helping and those transporting children to and from the church.

Thanks so much for your prayers! Prayer is a powerful thing and God is doing amazing things! : )

It’s such a blessing…

11 07 2008

Well, I just arrived “home” from camp. I’m worn out and looking forward to a couple days of rest before leaving town again. GA camp was incredible this week! Don’t ask which one I liked better…they are too different to compare. However, I can say that I saw God move in amazing ways during both weeks in the hearts and lives of the girls there.

The last post I made was an urgent prayer request about a girl in my group (if you haven’t read it yet, please skip down and read that first before reading this post any further). You know how, sometimes, you can tell by a person’s countenance whether or not they have the joy of Christ? It was such a blessing to be given the opportunity to talk with this girl and help her figure out what was really Truth. I could see God working on her all week. Today, at the end of our worship service, they gave a time for the girls to go to the front to pray with the leaders or to make a public decision if they wanted. This girl that I mentioned got up from her seat and walked to the front. She prayed with the Acteen director and talked with her for a few minutes, then returned to her seat. After the service, she came up to me and gave me a huge hug. The director and I spoke with her and gave her more Scriptures to look at to give her support and assurance of her faith. My friends…we have a new sister in Christ! I can’t thank you enough for your prayers! They were definitely felt and answered. Along with her, another girl…one from my room…also accepted Christ this morning! That’s another sister in Christ! God is at work in many other hearts as well…with possible calls to ministry…calls to be bold young women of God who burn with the passion of Christ. Keep these girls in your prayers! I think we’ve all seen the powerful effects that prayer can have. Keep our new sisters in your prayers as they begin their walks with Christ. Pray for their families and friends as they return home. Pray that these girls will become bold in their witness as they grow in their faith. Isn’t God incredible?!?!?!

Along with seeing decisions made and hearts changed, God blessed me with new friends this week….both older and younger. I thank God for each of those!

With it being the end of a camp week, I’m exhausted and running on fumes. Please pray that God will refuel me quickly so I can be ready to go again. This Saturday evening is our Deaf Fellowship at church. Sunday morning I fly out to St. Louis for the Southern Baptist Conference for the Deaf. I’m really excited, but again, it’s another busy week. I really don’t get time to recuperate until the 19th. I’m trusting that God will fill me up with enough energy to get through each day. Pray for safe travel as we fly and go from place to place in St. Louis. Also, pray for the Czech team that’s leaving from here within the next week…they’ll be teaching English.

That’s really all I have for right now. This week was incredible and God has blown my mind once again! I cannot say thank you enough for your prayers and support! My experience this week is proof that prayer is so powerful…God wants us to pour out our hearts to him and lift each other up. Please continue praying, not just for my mission here, but for other missionaries around the world and for each other. Thanks so much : )

Important Prayer Request!

9 07 2008

So I’m currently at my 2nd week of GA camp. I’m working with the Acteen group again, but teaching GA Bible study time. It’s been a great week so far and we still have another full day. The prayer request is for a girl in my Acteen group that I stay with. She’s a very sweet girl and has been a joy to get to know this week. She’s from a Jehovah’s Witness background, but somehow made it here to this camp. I have no doubt that the reason for that being so she can hear the Truth about our amazing God and His love for us. She’s really confused right now on what to believe. The first day, the quiet time and Bible study talked about finding our hope. She couldn’t answer the questions asked in the quiet time…it really confused her. I tried to help talk her through it a bit, but we ran out of time due to a busy schedule. Last night in our group devotion time (we’re reading through the story of Joseph…amazing!!!), we opened the floor for questions…if anyone had questions about anything (within reason), they could ask it. The room got really quiet and then we hear a tiny voice say, “This whole Jesus thing and him dying…I don’t get it.” She was confused because of the two beliefs she had heard as to whether or not Jesus really died on a cross and why He did it. We shared some Scripture with her to answer her question and really began praying double time for her. Today, I did quiet time with her. We talked through her quiet time questions in her booklet about finding our faith. We didn’t finish her questions because I found an open door to share my story and more about why Jesus died. She was very responsive to it. I asked if she had any more questions…she said no…but I made it clear that she can come to me whenever. Please be in deep prayer for her and for me. Pray that God will become very real to her and that the Truth will drown out any lies that she’s been told. Pray that, above all else, seeds are planted. She’s very obviously searching and is so close…pray that God continues to draw her closer to Himself. Pray that God will give me the words to say and help me recognize those divine appointments He has set up for me. Thanks for your prayers!!!