No matter where I go or what I do I end up being around teens. My husband and I were the Sunday school superintendents the teens at our church in Oregon and we had about 50 teens every Sunday. Because I get summer jobs every year I tend to work with teens who are also doing summer jobs. Since we moved here and our son-in-law is a youth pastor we spend time with teens. Every Wed. I drive a group of teen girls to go soul winning. I taught teens in school this year. I once again work with teens. And yes I hate to admit it but I love them. Every problem they have makes my heart hurt for them. The teens I work with very often have poor home lives. One girl who was 17 and not yet graduated from High school told me that she lived with her boy friend at her parents house for 2 years before he moved to Florida. A young man told me that he had been kicked out of high school and was going to an alternative school that lost its funding. He had just been accepted to a GED program at the local community college. He was living on his own (with his girl friend) and supporting himself on a part time job so he would be able to study. I don't know what lead to these circumstances and I don't know what kind of relationship these kids have with their parents. I don't know if they have pushed away the authorities in their lives and now have to deal with life on their own or if their authorities let them down. All I know is that these stories break my heart. I try to picture the kind of adults that will be produced by these lives. Then I realized...the lives aren't all that different than mine. Many of us had rough teen years. Many of our parents let us down or we let them down. We made mistakes. We messed up. We showed how immature and irresponsible we were. And guess what...we turned out OK. Sure we didn't have an easy go of it. We did learn from our mistakes and grew and eventually we made it. I just hope that I have an opportunity to share the gospel with these young people. I know my own life would have been easier if I would have found the Lord earlier so maybe I can help them that way. Please pray for me.
Every year at this time of year I feel a little let down. I am relieved that it is almost summer vacation and I won't have to do lesson plans and report cards and disciplining children but, I am also sad that I won't be spending time with people I have grown to love. I love teaching. I think that that is kind of funny coming from someone who until I had my own kids didn't even know it I wanted any. I have discovered my passion in life. I like the order in it. I like watching their faces when they finally "GET" something they have been struggling with. I like teaching them about responsibility, hard work, dedication, and fun. I like teaching all ages. I have worked in daycare and taught 2 1/2 year olds. I have taught High School. I have taught 3-12Th grades. I like teaching everything except English. I don't like teaching English because I just don't get it. This year I got to teach at Calvary Baptist Academy. I taught math and literature. I have only taught since February although I subbed some before. As graduation rolls around I start to feel sad. Sad that some are leaving and sad that school will be over for summer. Today they had a teacher appreciation meal for us. It was wonderful. I have taught for 14 years now and never had a meal given to me before. I enjoyed every minute of it. Then Preacher gave us a end of the year bonus. That was another first for me. How exciting.
On the brighter side. Jerry and I are now teaching Jr. Church. It is so fun. The first week we had a big day at our church and we had 70 in our department. That is 3rd - 6Th grade. Last week we had 30. Once again I love watching their faces as they learn new truths and hear stories they haven't heard before. I like teaching them songs and playing games. Jerry is wonderful with object lessons and keeps them enthralled while he teaches. We have many workers in our department and each of them brings their own special type of talent. We are in the process of planning for the summer. We want to get the kids excited about God and what he can do in their lives. Please pray for us as we work on this project.
Josh and Jessica went to a Youth Conference named Our Time. It is held at Marion Ave. Baptist Church by Bro. Joe Brown. At the conference Josh was honored and received the Carrying The Torch Award. He gave his testimony and then they awarded him a traveling trophy and a plaque he gets to keep. What a wonderful honor for such an amazing young man.
Today was Calvary Baptist's 30Th anniversary. It was such an awesome day. Preacher had decided that Jr. Church was getting to big so he asked Jerry if he would be the leader of the Jr. Church for 3-6Th grade. Today was our first day and boy was it crazy. There was 145 kids in Jr. Church and they were supposed to sing in the main service. We practiced and practiced and then about 1 1/2 hours into the service we took all the kids upstairs to sing. They did a great job. When we came back down stairs we divided into our separate rooms. We ended up with 71 kids and we were blessed with 14 workers. They were so good and our workers did such an awesome job helping. Next week we will be able to have a schedule and kind of keep it. After church all the bus kids went to the zoo. The rest of us got to go and eat bar-b-Que pork sandwiches, beans, potato salad, and desserts. It was wonderful. There were many, many visitors and 170 on the buses. I know for sure there was one baptism. So So So great!
My husband has put up 11 sheets of sheet rock up in our house. He has all the lighting in the bathroom done and will soon start on the floors. He's been working like a mad man.
I have started working at K-mart. I will work about 12-20 hours a week. So far I like it.
Jerry is thinking about applying for a job in Pekin. I'm sure he would like it but it's 3rd shift. He's going to talk to Preacher and pray about it.
Friday night we went to a base ball game in Peoria. The Chiefs are a semi-pro team. I have never seen a ball game that was as fun. The Chiefs won 4-0 and the pitcher was an Oregonian. It was so fun. All of a sudden the heavens opened up and buckets of rain came down. WOW!!! I don't think I have ever seen it rain that hard before and I'm from Oregon.
Kayla rolled over for the first time at 4 am (according to Jessica). Kyndra is talking more and more. She makes so much sense when she talks now. She is growing up so fast.