Monday, June 20, 2011

Clarkston-Day 2

We were divided up in to two groups. One was a summer camp group where they went to a church to help the children with school work, crafts, story telling, and recreation. My group was called Spiritual Mapping. This basically is a way of finding those that are open or closed to the gospel. On this day, we prayed for unreached people groups and for our time knocking on doors and then we were off to The Lakes apartments. We spent the morning prayer walking. Alisa, Willis (summer intern), and I did just that...prayed as we walked. We were also able to ask Willis whatever questions we might have. As we were about to leave Jon (local missionary) came to us and said a social services office was moving furniture in for a new refugee family. We got over there and helped tear plastic off the new mattresses. The family would be coming within the next few days.

We headed back to the basement for lunch. Our second day in Clarkston felt a little off. We had more free time after lunch due to some late comers who had to be caught up on some of what we talked about in our meetings the day before. That afternoon we had "community development." One group knocked on doors at our complex to see who would be interested in English classes in their homes while the rest of us stayed back to paint around the basement. Kimberly and I painted the boys bathroom stalls that day. :) haha!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Clarkston-Day 1

I have so much to say about the mission trip I went on this past week. I was hoping to keep up with it all better as I was there, but we had no internet access. Hopefully I won't forget anything important. :)

It all started a few months ago when our small group was thinking about going to Haiti. For some reason that trip fell through. The more we talked about it, the more we thought it would be nice to go somewhere where a little closer since we all have little ones. Our church prints out lists every year of short, mid, and long term trips. One was to Atlanta. It was proposed to the group and I signed up. (Matt couldn't go because he doesn't have much vacation time at work. We already used a week at the beach, and not enough would accrue before this trip. He can't get out of going next time. :) ) Our team of 7 met together a couple of times beforehand, but we were never really sure what we would be doing on this trip.

So on Monday, with very little information about our trip, we loaded up bright and early in order to be in Clarkston by 9am. We got there right on time. By there I mean to Clarkston Oaks Apartments. That's where we met the leader, Zach. He led us into a bottom floor apartment building that they call the basement. I'm sure that's because there were no windows and it was 2 big rooms joined together by a kitchen. The basement is very unfinished, but they said we should have seen it a few weeks before. :) Another group from Chattanooga joined us and then began our day of teaching/training. Our first session was mostly about what a refugee is, what Global Frontier Missions is all about, some rules, and cultural orientation. After that we packed a sack lunch and headed over to the Hindu temple.

This temple is the largest one outside of India. It's right amongst the new shopping centers that had publix, subway, etc. Although very beautiful and intricately sculpted and put together, there was a very creepy spirit. We made our way inside and my heart broke watching so many worshipers bowing prostrate to their statue gods. These gods get bathed daily, fed snacks/meals, have their clothes changed, and are put to bed in their pajamas at night. All we could do was pray for their lost souls to find Jesus.

We ate our sack lunch in the car on the way back to the apartment complex for some more teaching. After that session we went on a tour of Clarkston. We found out "the local high school has students from more than 50 countries; a local mosque had 800 worshippers; and by some estimates, half the population was from outside the U.S." (wikipedia) Since the early 90's approximately 60,000 refugees have been resettled in this area. With over 150 different ethnic groups represented within and around the city. I think they said about 2,500 refugees come to this area every year. After more teaching several of us loaded up in the van and drove to the apartment complex next door. (Clarkston is 80% apartments.) As we walked up to the open common area my friend Kimberly noticed a couple of ladies killing a chicken on their back patio. Not too much later we smelled something on fire. They had thrown the whole chicken on the grill to burn the feathers off. Very interesting. :) ha! We played with several children in the complex. Many that I met were from Burma.




After leaving there we went back for dinner and then had some free time. We walked out the door and watched children play on the playground that GFM provided. So cool to see so many nationalities. That night we broke up in to groups to debrief and talk about what we'd learned that day and what had impacted us the most. Then lights were out by 10 or so. We were very tired, but were looking forward to what the rest of the week held.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Saturday, June 04, 2011

St. George 2011

We are blessed and thankful to have a trip to St. George Island every year. We look forward to it from the day we leave the beach until the time we arrive again. This year was one of our best! The boys are older and played well together (most of the time.) :) They liked being down at the beach for longer periods of time, and all of us adults got to relax and enjoy the beach for ourselves more than we have in the last couple of years. I think we were all needing the break.

Our first day on the beach!

Chillin


I thought I had hooked a big, nice fish. I was very wrong. So sad to catch a little sea turtle, but neat to see one up close. (I just noticed Bryan has a flashlight on his hat and it's turned on. Guess he was helping me look at the turtle.) :)

Pops & B hanging out on the awesome screened-in porch. By the way, the weather could not have been more perfect! Mid to low 80's with no humidity and a cool breeze. We hardly broke a sweat.

Lyndi & I took the boys to the park one morning for a change of scenery. We ended our play date with pizza & ice cream from B.J.'s. YUMMY!

Our one and only boat ride. See that nice man pulling our boat with his? Yeah, poor Ferrell's boat died on us. That man was kind enough to tow us back to the dock with his BRAND NEW, first time on the water, boat.


We were all tired and hungry after our evening stranded on the boat, but we had planned to celebrate G's 3rd birthday that night. He is the funniest little guy I've ever met. So glad we got to spend the week with him.


Breakfast with the Boys

Back out to play. They really like to run up and down the beach. Grant tried his best to keep up with Bryan. :) We think he was faster by the end of the week. Really!! (notice the dolphin?!)

Bryan and Pops wave jumping. Bryan was scared to get in the water at first. One day he had a horrible attitude so I grabbed him up out of the chair and ran to the water with him. He was hooked after that. :)



Our last full day at the beach we went to the end of the island to fish and look for seashells. We had seashells on the beach by the house we were in, but the end of the island has really nice ones. We got a couple of buckets full of shells and one bucket full of hermit crabs. They entertained us while the others fished.

Later that night we went to The Hut to have supper. Here are the boys waiting on us to get ready. Their movie of choice for the week was Peter Pan. They also LOVE Disney Channel's Jake and the Neverland Pirates. Pops gave them some "gold doubloons" and they were truly a treasure in their eyes.

And finally, in no particular order, group pictures!











Sunday, May 29, 2011

May 2011



 
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April 2011

 


There is a lot more to write about for April. Another post on the tornado day coming soon.
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March 2011

 
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February 2011

 
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January 2011

 
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Catch up

I got SO behind on all my blogging I thought I would just make a few collages and/or slideshows of things that have been going on since Thanksgiving. :) Here is December...

video

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Blessings

I love this song by Laura Story! The first time I heard it I thought of the tornado victims here in Alabama. Now it applies to so many others in the United States affected by the tornadoes and floods. You can hear some of Laura's story behind the song here.

I pray this song blesses you in whatever trials you may have in your life right now.


Thursday, December 09, 2010