Shew ya’ll! I am feeling the uptick in our normal schedule and pace this week from project. Add in sickness (colds) for 4-5 members of our family (including a sinus infection for Ed) and it has made for an eventful week.
However, God is doing some amazing things on campus and amongst our students and staff. We have had some hard moments of conflict resolution amongst students which is always faith stretching. We have spent an extended afternoon processing with the women what it means to truly surrender our lives to Christ and even process some areas in our life that we haven’t wanted to or known that we needed to let go. We have had 193 spiritual conversations and seen 6 students begin a relationship with Jesus! We have had some really crazy and awkward moments, both in just normal life and on campus interacting with students.
Here are some pictures from the week:
These first two are students who made a decision to place their faith in Jesus – Brenda and Winston. The following pictures after that are just students/staff on campus having spiritual conversations and goofing around.
Last Friday, we went to Coney Island – to the beach during the day with the staff and then to the amusement park with the students and staff. It was fun getting to just enjoy life together and the plus side of it being a week day? No lines and way less people!
Blake and Kinsley enjoyed the slower rides and rode this train 7+ times – I lost count after 5! Emerson, however, cried because she couldn’t do all the big roller coasters with her dad. So funny how the Lord makes kids so very different! One of my favorite parts about project is our kids getting to be around other students and staff who love Jesus and love on them. They have lived in a constant state of excitement since project began and ask everyday who is coming over that night. Jonathan, one of our staff guys, took turns running after Brynn for me and I turned around to see the two of them laughing at the people on the log fume. Such a sweet picture!
We had ethnic dinner at a Caribbean restaurant (curry chicken is where it is at!) and then had a super eventful trip home as Ed and I got separated, miscommunicated on what subway stop we were going to meet at, AND he had my phone in the stroller WITH HIM. Thankfully, two gracious people let me borrow their phones to talk to him to figure out where to meet up, but lets just say my habit of getting separated from my phone didn’t make my husband too happy.
One evening, we had a family dinner at our apartment (yummy tacos and ice cream with all the toppings!) and another evening, we went to see the Broadway musical “Come From Away”. It is about people who got rerouted and stuck in Canada after 9-11. It has no intermission and goes for 100 minutes straight but it was absolutely fabulous. It was probably one of my favorites I have seen and was so well done. The actors were amazing!
I got to attend our annual meeting at church last weekend and was so encouraged to hear about our church’s vision for the next year, all the ways people are experiencing growth, and challenged to see this slide and be reminded (though I am reminded daily!) of why the Lord has us in NYC…if each borough in NYC were its own city, this is how they would rank with other cities in the US. As the new members went around and shared where they were from, I was amazed to learn that only about 15% of them are from here – the rest were from Puerto Rico (lots from here and we are thinking they came here because of the hurricane), South Korea, Hong Kong, Colombia, etc.
We also got to have a baby shower to celebrate a couple in our church small group who are having their first girl. We love, love, love our small group – we are so grateful to God for gifting us with people to read the Word with, challenge each other, pray with each other, celebrate each other, teach each other, etc. The guy with Blake is named Fady and he was one of the first guys in our group and when Blake met him, he just latched on.
And this kid? This week, she is killing me with her climbing, mess-making, and getting into everything!! We have a microwave on an island in our kitchen and we turned around one day and she had climbed from the stool to the window to the microwave and was STANDING on it! Many days I have found her in the sink with the water on and this day, she wasn’t just playing with the water in the toilet (which happens more often than I want to admit), but she was full in the toilet! Emerson prayed tonight that God would give me another baby girl in my belly and I told her that if he did, I am pretty positive I wouldn’t make it. 🙂
We have two more weeks of project left. Please pray for perseverance for us as we balance the last full week of school and the activities that come with that (class parties, appreciation breakfasts, kindergarten graduation) with project happenings. Please pray that students and staff would continue to push in and initiate conversations with students as they finish out the home stretch. Please pray that God would continue to use us to impact this city!