Saturday, December 11, 2010

We’re heading to Rapid once again, so I guess it’s time to tell y’all what I’ve been up to. Here we go…

v The last day we spent the day in Rapid was November 12. That was a fun trip, because we stopped at about every roadkill we saw and took pictures. Very fun and entertaining. We also found potatoes in the parking lot at Walmart. I have some pictures of that. I also have pictures of some really cool roadkill, but I didn’t put them in the album. Ha.

v The next day we went hunting about all day. I think the tribal season is still in, but the regular season is over.

v One evening, Devon, Kris, Melissa, and I went to Eagle Butte to sing and play piano and guitar at a nursing home. We zoomed all the way there and made it to the Game, Fish, and Parks place just in the nick of time. I was able to get turkey tags, so I borrowed Nate’s shotgun and Kris and I went hunting the next morning. I got 3 turkeys, so we had a new experience trying to clean them.

v I went sledding for the first time! My first grader taught me how. I think it made him feel really big…he said, “Don’t be afraid. It’s not scary.”

v Our little mission team was almost doubled over Thanksgiving with 14 visitors. 5 kids our age were here, so we had fun sledding, singing for some elderly people in town, and playing games. 3 girls stayed at our house, so that was a party. One of them was Courtney Martin….she taught kindergarten and first grade here last year. We girls left for Rapid after school on the day before Thanksgiving to pick her up from the airport.

v Kris, Melissa, Courtney, and I went to Pierre to see Amber Best and to see Christmas at the Capitol. The entire Capitol building is filled with Christmas trees that different organizations and businesses decorate. They had a piano in the middle of the one floor, so I worked up courage for quite a while then I finally decided to just bite the bullet and go play it.

v The truck from Pennsylvania came on the 4th. It comes a couple times a year and is full of furniture for our thrift sale in February, tires for the tire shop, and Christmas bundles that we pass out all over the reservation. We are very blessed to have so many caring people back east who donate things to send on the truck, who load it, and who drive it all the way out here. Usually all the people here from Pennsylvania also get boxes from their family, and since I’m not from PA I thought I wouldn’t get anything. Well, what a surprise...I got 3 boxes and a keyboard! The boxes were full of food and lots of other goodies from my family and the people back home, and the keyboard was from Troy, the guy who was here over the summer. We had lots of squealing and excitement in our house as everyone opened their surprises from home.

v We have begun Christmas caroling around town. People seem to really enjoy it.

v Our school’s Christmas is on the 19th, so we are practicing for that. My class and I are all going to be angels.

v Lord willing, I’ll be home in 12 days from today!

v As I read back over that, is sounds really boring, but hopefully it still gives you a glimpse of my life on the cold and snowy prairie.

v Something for each of us to remember…..”If you’re not part of the problem or part of the solution, don’t talk about it.” One of my teachers at Bible School told me that, and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget it.

v “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:11-13) I’m teaching these verses to my students….such a powerful message.

v I hope each of you has a safe, wonderful Christmas! God bless, Laura

Friday, November 12, 2010

We haven’t been to town for a pretty long time – I’m craving some Wi-fi! :) The Veteran’s Pow-Wow is this weekend, so we don’t have school tomorrow (Friday). Since it’s a whole day adventure when we go to town, it will be very nice to be able to go on Friday and still have Saturday to get our other things done before another week begins.

I’m sitting in my living room, looking back over what all has happened in the last couple weeks. Here’s a few of the things that have been keeping me and the rest of the mission team out of trouble:

-October 22 was the end of the first quarter at school, so we took the kids on a field trip to the Discovery Center in Pierre. Then we got them all kid’s meals from McDonald’s and ate in a park. The weather was gorgeous, so it was a perfect day for that.

- That evening, Mr. Alvin Byers’ came to visit me. I had looked forward to seeing them for a long time and had a lot of fun with them - off-roading in our old Taurus to show them prairie dogs, beef cattle, Cherry Creek, Cheyenne River, and all the other “tourist attractions” here.

- That Saturday, Lee and Bruce Hilty came for the weekend. We played volleyball out by the river using a row of cowpies for the net. That was definitely a highlight :)

- Erma, a lady who taught here for 9 years, and her nieces Twila and Marlese were here last weekend to bring Christmas bundles from some churches in Nebraska.

- We got snow maybe 2 weeks ago or so. But after that, it really warmed up. Now it’s getting colder again.

- Winter Bible Study’s keep us all a little busier. The women’s is on Monday’s and the men’s is on Thursday’s. Each week, I either babysit, make snack, or lead the singing.

- We are looking forward to a lot of company over the next few weeks. Some are coming to go hunting and some of the former staff are coming just to visit.

Well, that’s a little look into my life. Thank you for praying for me as I strive to fulfill my responsiblies here. I am so thankful to God for faithfully helping me through each day. I am certain I could not have made it through these 3 months without Him by my side. I ask for your continued prayer support as I teach. The last couple weeks, especially this past week, have been extremely challenging as try to meet the needs of each of my students. “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. FOR WHEN I AM WEAK, THEN I AM STRONG.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

I’m going to add something that Carmen sent me. It just blesses my soul every time I read it...hopefully it will bless you also.

For Such A Time As This

For such a time as this I brought you here.

Before the world was formed I planned you.

I chose your gifts and dreamed of their use.

I thought of places I wanted you to use them.

I added weaknesses, for I know that when you are weak,

You can cry out to Me. Then you will be strong.

I planned your location, your family, your contacts,

And, oh, how I hoped you would see them,

Really see them as I do – with passion and a dream.

I knew the circumstances that would affect your life,

And I hoped that you would see them as opportunities to grow,

To share, to listen to your heart as it cries out to me.

I loved you. I wanted you. So I planned you.

And now, as you face this obstacle, this mountain in your path,

Never forget that I planned for you to be right here, right now,

For such a time as this.

Love and miss y’all, Laura

Saturday, October 16, 2010

We are on the way to Pierre to go shopping. I’ll try to tell you about my last few weeks and not be too boring.

One Sunday night, all of us went out to one of the ranchers’ place for grilled hamburgers. Two of their kids, Seth and Lexie, to our school.

Two Saturdays ago, we single staff went somewhere near Sturgis to hike Bear Butte. It’s 1000 feet high, but the trail is about 2 miles long, so it wasn’t that hard of a climb. It was really fun, and the view from the top was incredible.

We’ve had some visitors in the last couple weeks. Elmer and Lois Zimmerman from Pennsylvania came to see Melissa. Frank and Ann Good from Virginia came to see Kristina. Eugene and Elaine Weaver were here last weekend – About every 3 months, an OBMM board member goes to each mission and checks up on things and interviews each of us. He told me in my interview that I’m fired. Ha. Not.

Last Sunday, I had 20 kids in the youngest Sunday School class! There were 49 people at church all together. The attendance has really been up – it is a definite answer to prayer and very encouraging. Pray with us that people would continue to come and that they would see their need of Jesus.

I continue to need your prayers as I teach. I used to teach kindergarten in the morning and first grade in the afternoon, but as of last week, I have both grades in the morning. This is very challenging and many times I feel so incapable.

Lord willing, Mr. Alvin and Mrs. Susie Byers will be here next weekend! I’m so excited – I’m ready to see somebody from home!!

The first thing we did when we got to Pierre was sing for an old lady from Cherry Creek who is in a nursing home here. We were expecting to just sing in her room, but we ended up having to sing out in the lobby where she was sitting. It was really awkward at first since we had such a crowd, and plus ended up having staff and everyone peeking around the corners at us. But they all seemed to enjoy and we actually had a lot us fun. We usually sing with all the mission staff, so it was fun to just be able to sing with us 3.

Well, that is all I’ll write for this time. If you want to know more about my life, you’ll just have to come see me J Thanks to each one who sent me mail – Mr. Dennis brings it to school, so that’s always a huge highlight in my day! Most of all, thank you for your prayers…sometimes I think I can actually “feel” people praying for me. That means so much and it’s making more of a difference than you will ever know. Love and miss y’all! God bless, Laura

Here's some pics...

“God didn’t promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, nor sun without rain; But He did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears, and light for the way.”

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Friends, Romans, and countrymen….I’ll try to catch y’all up on my life in Cherry Creek since last time. It’s gonna sound random and chopped up, but anyways.

· We had 3 days off of school for Labor Day, so that was a nice break. Eagle Butte (a city about 45 minutes from here) had a Labor Day Parade, and, since most of Cherry Creek is there, we decided to decorate our truck and take it through the parade. We ended up getting rained out, but we still had a lot of fun.

· A few weeks ago, we watched a DVD about Native Tribes Missions. Seeing such poor, isolated countries and the missions there makes me feel so fortunate that I was called to a place with so many conveniences – It’s so easy for me to take it for granted and feel like I “deserve” it. Something on the movie that really struck me went something like this, “What you want to be is not important. What matters is what you are willing to become.”

· Our dear dog Sergeant Maranckerson is still alive and well and now has a doghouse =) Troy built one under our back steps – that very night it rained, so it worked out just perfect. Troy left Wednesday to go back home; he was just here for the summer.

· Eugene and Elaine Weaver are planning to be here in about 2 weeks. It will be good to see them and also to get my huge suitcase of belongings they are bringing out!

· A verse that has really encouraged me recently is Isaiah 48:17, “This is what the Lord says – your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: ‘I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go’.”

· I take the kindergarteners home at lunchtime, and when I dropped Kyson off today, he was was singing, “Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so!” That just totally made my day. Sometimes teaching can be discouraging, but little things like that is what makes it worth it. Thanks for your prayers!

Here's the link to some pictures....

Later, Laura

Friday, September 3, 2010

Well, it’s Thursday night and we’re planning to go to Rapid City tomorrow, so I’m writing this with the hope that I can figure out how to upload it when I get there. First of all, thanks to all of you who have been praying for me and the ministry here in Cherry Creek…it means so much to me. I’ve been here about 3 and a half weeks now. It seems like way longer than that…so much has been going on. I don’t want to bore you with all the details, but I’ll try to give an overview of my time here so far and hit some of the highlights.

School started on the 23rd. We’ve had 9 days so far. 4 kids were enrolled in kindergarten, and 2 in first grade; however, one kindergartener never did show up and one came for only like 3 or 4 days. The first graders are in the other classroom while I teach kindergarten. After lunch, I teach the first graders. 11 kids are in the whole school: Isaiah, Micah, Ethan, Dallen, Kyson, Seth, Lexie, Jayla, Kobe, Myanna, and Evalyn.

School is going very well. As with anything, though, it has it’s ups and downs. The verse that got me through the first couple days is Isaiah 41:13, “For I am the Lord your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” The school ministry is such a wonderful place for God to touch lives. Help us pray that Satan would be bound and that each one of these children would someday turn their lives over to Christ. Yesterday was a very discouraging day at school, but once again, God was faithful. A song kept running through my head…”We’ve got the power in the name of Jesus! We’ve got the power in the name of the Lord! Though Satan rages, we will not be defeated! We’ve got the power in the name of the Lord!” 2 Corinthians has also been an encouragement to me. “But he said to me,’My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Last weekend was the Pow-Wow here in Cherry Creek. It’s only a couple hundred yards from the house, so we spent a good bit of time there. Men’s and women’s softball tournaments were held on Saturday and Sunday. This weekend is the Pow-Wow in Eagle Butte, a bigger town about 45 minutes from here. Monday is Eagle Butte’s Labor Day parade, and our church is planning on sending a float through since a lot of Cherry Creek people will be there. We can’t wait!

This is getting long…the pictures should hit everything I didn’t write about. I just put them all on a web album...hope this address works. Love and miss y’all! Laura

“If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Christ Jesus. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen” 1 Peter 4:11

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The will of God will never take you...
...where the grace of God cannot keep you,
...where the arms of God cannot support you,
...where the riches of God cannot supply your needs,
...where the power of God cannot endow you.

The will of God will never take you...
...where the spirit of God cannot work through you,
...where the wisdom of God cannot teach you,
...where the army of God cannot protect you,
...where the hands of God cannot mold you.

The will of God will never take you...
...where the love of God cannot enfold you,
...where the mercy of God cannot sustain you,
...where the peace of God cannot calm your fears,
...where the authority of God cannot overrule for you.

-Author unknown