Thursday, April 17, 2014

Seconds Are A Blessing!!

UK YAGM ladies back at Cliff College.
 Gonna miss them next year!!

At Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp, we have a saying to indicate when the campers are welcome to a second helping of food if desired...we simply shout out, "SECONDS ARE A BLESSING!"
This helps to let them know that everyone has had a chance to eat and remind them of how blessed they are to have the option of seconds.

This year has been such an amazing experience and being apart of the Jesmond Methodist Church family has brought me such joy from day one! Which is why I am so incredibly happy that I can now officially say, in regards to my year with JMC....SECONDS ARE A BLESSING!!!
That's right, I will be staying on for a second year with JMC (after a month back in the States this summer to renew my visa and visit home of course!!).

Although YAGM (Young Adult in Global Mission with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America) is only a year long program, our sister programme here in the UK (Time For God or TFG) offers a second year option. So after putting much thought and reflection into my experience this year, and the possibility of what a second year would look like, I decided to do a second year as the student and young professional coordinator with Jesmond Methodist Church. Of course with blessings from my community, the JMC leadership, YAGM, TFG, and most mother ;)

One of the JMC students enjoying the waves at
our Alpha Away Day on the coast
Knowing I will be back for a second year has put many plans in motion for JMC and what my job will look like when the next University year begins.
It has been wonderful watching the younger community members of the JMC family grow in fellowship and to see new talent emerge in our worship team, and I hope this growth continues into next year. Above all this, I am looking forward to helping new leaders step forward and find confidence in their role in the congregation. We may be a smaller church, but this only opens more opportunity for our members to grasp this personal importance.

Now begins another effort to make this happen. Now begins a 2nd round of fundraising!
This time around I will be collecting the fundraising, as I am now responsible for the Travel expenses and fees for Time For God.  My community here in Newcastle is going to be an amazing help over the next few months towards my funding, but it would be great to have some support from the States as well!

Regardless of if you are able to help me reach my monetary goal (Flight expenses and 1,200 pounds/2,020 dollars for TFG fees), I would love to have your prayer support throughout the next year more than anything.
Feel free to email me with any questions about how you can support me, and as always, I can't thank you enough for the love and support over this year so far!!

Cheers for now,
and remember....SECONDS ARE A BLESSING!!
Please Help Bring Me Back To This Beautiful City!


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Picture Perfect Pup

 The other day I was walking home from meeting some students in town, and as I was passing some terraced houses, I spotted an adorable black lab poking its head through the fence. Her owner was a petite old woman who smiled, asking the lab, "Who's that?" So I took this as an invitation to stop, and asked permission to pet the pup....

Me: Would you mind?
Owner: Not at all!
Me: She is precious! What's she called?
Owner: Louise. She used to be able to nearly hop right through the fence when she was little.
Me: Well she is a sweetheart.
Owner: Yeah she loves the attention...

As I was petting her lab and chatting away, I had a momentary day dream about how this sweet old woman and I might meet like this again and possibly share wisdom and life stories over a nice cuppa one day; just like you see in the movies. But this image, and our conversation, was suddenly interrupted when Louise unexpectedly got sick on the pavement!

The woman apologized and explained that the lab had been munching on the grass earlier. We shared sympathy for the pup, before I turned towards home. The woman called after, insuring that I would feel free to stop by and give the Louise some attention anytime she was outside. So I agreed, thanked her and continued on my way.

Crossing the next street, I couldn't help but giggle--such a seemingly, movie perfect interaction that took an odd little turn.
Life is not meant to be picture perfect, people. But you CAN see God's beauty (and sense of humor!) in almost any situation if you have the wisdom to laugh it off. :)

Cheers for Now!

PS- I have some exciting news to share with you all in my next post! Stay tuned :)