Tag Archives: summer

Summer Debrief: Part 2

This July, God placed an amazing opportunity before me: to go on my first international mission trip! Some friends of mine went with our church to Trinidad last summer and I was blessed to be able to go this year. God provided for the trip in amazing ways! I was planning on paying for most of the trip myself but through family, friends, and church members the Lord provided for all of the financial needs!

We left early on Saturday morning. I was a little nervous about flying especially since I had the flu bug the day before and was still a little dizzy but I had no troubles. We arrived safe and sound Saturday evening in Port of Spain and were whisked off to Famous Trinidad KFC. They will proudly tell you theirs is the best in all the land. It was pretty good.

Monday – Wednesday we taught VBS in two locations. One in the morning and the second in the afternoon, as well as a women’s ministry at the second location.

The Morning VBS was the same place the group had shared at last year in a town called McBean, with approximately 23 children. These children have a basic knowledge of the Word of God, were very well behaved and they were so happy to see us.

Our Afternoon VBS was in a town called Carlsen Field. We had 30+ children. This was a much poorer, drug infested location where one of the members of the church down there lives. She and her family are trying to minister to the people there and the VBS was held on their home property. This was a much more challenging VBS because there seems to be very little knowledge of the Word of God and they did not pay attention very well. But when God sets before you a challenge, he also gives you the grace to complete it!

While the VBS was going on in the driveway of this home two of our ladies were meeting with the women of Carlson Field on the patio of the house right beside where VBS was taking place. There were two women that they were able to minister to. One, who’s husband is an alcoholic, another who’s husband is a Cocaine addict and lives mostly at the local drug house and only comes home to steal from his wife and children and abuse them. Her 8 year-old son refuses to live at home and says he will kill his dad when he is older because of what he sees his dad do to his mom. This mother does not sleep at night because of fear. It was very hard to hear these stories and to feel helpless to aid these families. All we could do was proclaim Christ to them, knowing that THAT was what they truly needed anyway.

Tuesday evening we all loaded up in the van to go see the Leather Back Turtles that are 200 or more who come up on the shore and lay eggs OR to watch baby turtles hatch. Once again, God had another plan for us. There was a young woman walking toward us on the road. Pastor Bickram (the pastor who’s house we were staying at and a good friend) asked if she knew where we might see some Turtles and she said she would take us to them and got in the van with us. She said she was going to a town and we were headed in that direction but she was on foot. Now this is 15 miles of pitch black darkness of night with woods, tall grass on both sides of the road and she was 26 years old. Bickram pulled over under lights of the town to ask her some more questions and we ended up taking her to the police station and even that was a hard decision to make because often times they are as corrupt as the criminal. However, they were very helpful and were concerned for the girl’s safety. The bottom line is that she had run away from home and was headed for a drug house, apparently to meet someone she didn’t really know. The police told Bickram we saved her life that night. I have been praying for this girl ever since.

On Thursday, we did some sightseeing in Tobago before flying back on Friday. It was a great trip. God gave all of us the grace we needed to push through our tiredness and to love on kids that were not always obedient. The culture down there is so rough. The last day of VBS, I was sitting on the grass at Carlsen Field and suddenly there were about 10 kids around me, all wanting attention. They were pulling my hair, pinching me, and kicking me: just to try to get my attention. I told one of the guys in our group that it felt like in movies where people are attacked by birds! I had bruises on my arms from it! I was glad to be able to show Christ’s love to the kids.

The situation down there was very eye-opening. The thing is: it was eye-opening about OUR country. I’ve heard stories of kidnapping and drugs, but to see that first hand in Trinidad made me realize that this happens in America as well. It may not be as public here, but it happens all the time. I have a friend who works in the Family and Children First Council around here and I hear stories from her that shock me. Our country desperately needs the Gospel. This trip has made me more committed to living out the gospel every day.

I don’t usually post a lot of pictures but thought I would share some with you.

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Posted by on August 12, 2014 in Trinidad


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Excited for Summer

At first, I was bummed. Then, I was tearful. Now, I am excited.

You see, becoming the office manager of the Farm has one very big disadvantage. It means I can’t be a counselor this summer. Counseling is really where my heart is but I don’t think it’s probable that I will get to play that role this summer. Maybe for a week or two. I would feel very grateful if I could get even that in. So, at first, I was bummed that I would be a counselor.

Then the summer staff started to arrive on Sunday. It was great getting to see all the old faces and meet the new ones. They kind of hung out in the office for a while as it is air-conditioned. That’s when it hit me: I really do have a job to do in the office and I’m not going to get to spend as much time with these staff. And I longed to be on summer staff…and I cried a little.

Over the past two days, I have been in the office most of the time and the summer staff have been training around the farm. After dinner, I have been able to spend a lot more time with them. And now, I am excited. You see, last year when I was a counselor, I didn’t get to spend much time focusing on the staff because I was focused (rightly) on my cabin and campers. With the flexibility I have now of NOT being on summer staff, I am able to know the staff on a deeper level. I am able to pray more specifically for them and be an encouragement to them. I am able to hop in and help in their cabins when they need an extra hand at night or to print something off during the day for them. As a full-time staffer, I am able to be one of their advisers (mentors) and lead one of the Bible Study groups next week for training. And I’m excited to be playing that role. It’s new and different for me but it fits and it stretches me. One of the goals for me this summer is to work on being more encouraging to others. This role will fit perfectly into that goal.

So yes, I am still disappointed that I can’t be a counselor all summer. No, I am not complaining about it. Yes, I am wholeheartedly working in the office still. And yes, I have totally embraced this new opportunity in my life.

(Same as last summer, I may not be on here a whole lot, but I will still try to at least check for comments around once a week. But don’t expect too many posts. 🙂 )

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Posted by on June 4, 2014 in camp


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Growth at Camp

I’m back!  It is so nice to be home again! I had an AMAZING summer!  I’ve been greatly blessed and grown by God this summer and I don’t even know where to start.  Sooooo….where should I start?

Camp is a unique environment.  It’s a place where you are on duty 24 hours a day/almost 7days a week.  The campers get to see you all the time.  They will without fail pick up on your attitudes and actions.  We have this saying at camp:  what you do in moderation, campers will do in excess.   How true that is!  So here is what I learned at camp:

1.  Every moment is an opportunity to learn.  During staff training, we learned to bring teachable moments into the daily routine.  It’s so true- many things around us point us to God and display his glory!  My campers would often say, “You bring everything we talk about back to the Bible!”


2. Saving is God’s job, not ours.  Our job is to be obedient and share the gospel and leave the rest up to God.  No matter what you say, if the Holy Spirit is not working in a person’s life, then they will reject the gospel. The opposite is also true- if the Holy Spirit is working in a person’s heart, then that person will believe in spite of what you say! 


3. It’s okay to be wet.  Rain does not stop camp activity and you get used to living like a duck- it was a wet summer!  There was one time it rained all week and I was taking the younger boys cabin to their next activity.  We were all soaking wet so we went puddle stomping!  We (yes, me too)  had so much fun!


4. I can’t be the shy person.  I’ve always been one of those people who wait for others to introduce themselves and initiate things. However, at camp it’s very important to step out and be that person.  You have to introduce yourself to so many people and be outgoing with everyone.


5. I learned to be spontaneous.  I’m one of those people who stick to the schedule above all else.  I learned that it’s okay to deviate from that schedule sometimes and do something crazy fun!

Above all else, I learned to have such a heart for kids.  To be excited to share the gospel with them and to pray fervently for their salvation.


I learned to see God’s grace better and to share that grace with others.

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Posted by on August 27, 2013 in camp


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Farewell for the Summer

It’s been super busy around here as I prepare to leave in 15 days!  Everything has been winding down and I’m getting excited!  I’m done with THIS now and I’ve learned much through it.  I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a blessing and servant of Christ!  My house cleaning has also ended and homeschool co-op teaching is done as well.  I’ve had my last flute lesson and I’m babysitting one more time for a Bible study.  I’ve had my last day in the church nursery and I’ve stopped teaching Sunday School.  I’m finally done scheduling blog posts for  while I’m away!  Spring cleaning is done and the garden is planted. Everything is preparing for summer!

Of course, I’m still busy.  No matter how much is over with, it seems I’m still busy.  I like this kind of busyness:  playing games with my siblings and enjoying their company before I leave them for the whole summer, falling asleep when Bethany reads to me for her literature,  watching as Becca grows up into a beautiful young lady, packing for camp, going to garage sales, and learning more about the Lord!


Here’s what he’s been teaching me lately (besides how much I will miss my family this summer!). I’ve always struggled with praying.  It just seems like it was always a routine and something to do and get it over with. I’ve always talked to God throughout the day but the sit-down-and-only-pray thing threw me off.  Ashamed to admit it, but I always got bored. How sad!  Talking to the Creator and Savior and I get bored?! This year I’ve been focusing on learning more about prayer.  I’ve learned something:

Prayer is not optional.


“Pray without ceasing.”  1 Thessalonians 5:17

If you notice, it’s a command, not a request.  It doesn’t say to pray when you feel like it or when you’re in trouble or when you’re feeling joyful.  It says to pray without ceasing= all the time.  I need to be in the spirit of prayer at all times. NOT just when I feel like it.  I think that’s what I’ve been doing most my life- only praying when I wanted to.

He’s also been teaching me how sweet prayer really can be!  I’m so thankful for God’s lessons!

This is probably farewell for me until August.  Maybe I’ll be able to pop in from time to time to say hello but don’t count on it!  In the meantime, I’ve scheduled two posts per week- nothing fancy, just the catechism question, songs, and some quotes.  I’m also probably going to turn all comments off since I won’t even be here to read them.

Thanks to all of you for reading!



Posted by on May 18, 2013 in camp


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Spending the Summer

I can’t wait for summer to come!  That’s something I’ve probably never said before because I don’t really like summer. I hate to be hot and so I much prefer being cold. After all, there are a lot more things one can do to get warmer, than to cool off!

But now I can’t wait for summer to come!  This summer, I’m going to be working at a Christian horse camp as a counselor!  My Mom and Dad first came up with the suggestion. My Mom worked at this camp for 18 years before she was married.

So, I filled out an application and had an interview over the phone. I prayed about it a lot and was thrilled the day an email came to tell me that the position was mine if I wanted it!

I’m so excited to be a positive role model for the kids- some of them may never have had one before!  I pray God will use me to influence and model Christ’s love for the kids coming to camp this summer!  I want to live transparently for them because they get to see me when I’m teaching and when I’m living it out.  I pray God’s grace will be evident.

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Posted by on February 4, 2013 in camp


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