Monday, October 24, 2011

a little insight on how great God is

As many of you know, I am a gym rat. Since I like to start my days off at home with exercise I decided to have the same goal while in Jamaica. I try to start my day off with a run, key word there is try. Sometimes there are some obstacles that get in my way: rain, no running water to shower afterward, or just plain laziness! When I do get a run in, I use a majority, if not all of that time, to pray and reflect on how God is working in my life. A couple weeks ago I had a great conversation with my Heavenly Father. When I got back to my apartment after my morning sessions, I immediately wrote down my feelings and thoughts into my journal. If any of you journal like I do, you may look back and say, "I should had added this", "I should have said that differently", or "Look at the horrible grammar, good thing no one else is seeing this!". Well regardless of all of those, I decided to share that journal entry with you.
So- here it is.
How awesome is God?! Today has been a very eye opening spiritual day for me. I have obviously been reminded daily of God's love for me here, but today as I was running it really hit me. I spent the 30 minutes this morning in conversation with my Heavenly Father. Realizing how the Holy Spirit has guided me throughout my time here left me in awe. I have felt in a cloud or a bubble since this morning.
I started off my run like any other run I have had here. At first I start off in prayer and usually halfway through I am merely focused on making it out alive. Startig off my prayers giving thanks for all the countless blessings in my life, my mind began to shift to the thought of the Holy Spirit.
Seriously, 5 weeks ago I completely doubted my ability to do this. During my run I thought about my time here, this is God's work that I was called to do. I have the strength and ability to be her through the Holy Spirirt that is alive in me. Because of this, I have has a transformation of my heart to see this for what it truly is. I am NOT here by my own will but God's.
I have been blessed to have the God given gift of teaching and I know because of Him I will be able to impact many lives if I stay focused on Him. If I continue to let my light shine, this feeling will continue after my return home.
I have always "known" God is with me. BUT after putting myself completely out of my comfort zone, I have truly realized, felt, and seen God's presence in my. If it weren't for the Holy Spirit living in me, I doubt that I would have been able to make it through the five weeks."

time flies while you are living the dream

Can you believe it, I have less than four weeks left in Jamaica?!? Where has the time gone? Once again, so much has happened since my last blog posting. I have continued to work with my students and see progress all of the time. Seeing them learning and understanding more is so rewarding.
The school had midterm break last week to celebrate their National Heroes. Erin and I took this free time to escape once again! We headed to the beach in MoBay with Ionda, Kadeen, Daphawn, Tashi, and Blake. While there we got to enjoy two beach days, which were very relaxing. Erin and I took Blake, Tashi, and Daphawn back to Kingston a week ago and indulged in some delicious ice cream at Devon House.

the school building

This is a view of campus from the second floor of the school. Immediately on the left is the girls' dorm and opposite that is the boys' on the right. The dining hall and auditorium are on the right after the boys' dorm. In the background on the right you can kind of see the vocational school and up at the top of the hill is where I live.

Daphawn, Blake, and me at Devon House in Kingston. This was the house of the first millionaire in Jamaica.

The three girls at Devon House

Some Jerk Chicken from Pork Pit in Montego Bay.

Daphawn and me at the beach!

This is my classroom where I spend my morning working with Annakay and Sanieka.

Monday, October 10, 2011

lots of catching up!

I have been neglecting my blog recently. sorry friends. After I have included pictures in one posting, I feel as though I need to include them always now. In order to do that, I have to borrow someone's laptop and I do not want to be a bother to others by frequently asking them to borrow their computers.
Since my last posting, a lot has taken place! I had a nice relaxing weekend staying here on campus (2 weekends ago). Last week we had a team come from Samaritan's Feet and they distributed a new pair of shoes to all of the students. During the process, they were sized for shoes, got to color a bit, their feet were washed by the team, and then they tried on shoes to find that perfect fit.
On Friday, Erin treated Joanne and I to a girls' getaway. We went to YS Falls and then out for a dinner on the beach. The rest of the weekend consisted of football watching, movie watching, and baking!
Now for a catch up on pictures!
Sanieka is working very hard everyday to write her name. She is so proud of herself while we are working together. Frequently, she will look at me and sign "Smart".

Funny Story. I was hanging my clothes out on the line to dry and a Jamaican woman came up to me and started frantically signing. She was telling me how I was hanging all my laundry the long way. After some laughs and rearranging, my sheets hung the proper way.

Love him. We watched the movie "How to Train Your Dragon" and now he always imitates that dragons.

Hanging out in front of the girls' dorm.

Not the best picture, but this is right after Sheldon got his new shoes!

Miss Sanieka and her new pink shoes.

Gloria washing feet and telling about Jesus.

Allesha and Britania coloring before they got their new shoes.

the shoes

part of YS Falls

Joanne and me in the water, it was freezing.

Me jumping off the waterfall!

This is Little Ochi where we ate dinner. There were a lot of boats up on stilts and your food was brought out to you. Erin and I had fried chicken and Joanne was daring at had the fish. She picked it out of a cooler and they scaled it and cooked it.

The three girls at the end of the day. Erin was a trooper and drove through some crazy rain and roads that were temporarily rivers to get us here!