Sunday, March 9, 2014

Ready, Set, GROW!!!

Learning how to play Corn Hole during recess
Ready.  Do we ever really feel ready for the big race, that presentation, test or conversation.  The answer rarely is yes!   Ready... was I ready for this job as the director of NCA Matagalpa?   My answer was no but God knows better.    He knows that the mere fact that not feeling ready means that we are more likely to recognize that we are not the ones really in control and are dependent on Him who is always ready.   I recently found this quote from Phillip Yancy that  clearly expresses this idea for me.   "A person who lives in faith must proceed on incomplete evidence, trusting in advance what will only make sense in reverse."  

Starting the day off right!
Set.   Setting up for a new school year is yes, overwhelming for teachers but there is a sense of excitement in the air.   A fresh new start.  New faces, new school supplies, themes and techniques to try out.   The start of year 2 for NCA Matagalpa is an exciting one.   We learned so much in our first year and are excited about the new challenges that more students and more staff bring but we are even more excited to see what God has in store for the lives of the families and students we serve.

NCA Winter Olympics 2014
Grow.   Usually growth is a slow and steady process. Then there are those quick growth spurts where it seems like things happen overnight.   This year we are experiencing one of those growth spurts.   NCA Matagalpa finished the first school year with 42 students and currently has 140 students enrolled.   The teaching staff has grown from 8 to 16!  The school facilities have also expanded with the help of many hands building, painting and donating $.   This year we've added on 3 more classrooms and another set of bathrooms.

Move.  As the school year has now begun we are definitely moving, a lot.  The year started off with lots of excitement helping many new students get situated.   In an effort to help bring together the 5th-8th graders we had our own version of the Winter Olympics.   Students were divided to represent 6 different countries and participated in events like speed skating, luge, biathlon, curling and more.

Gold Medalist in the Luge   Nica Style
Team Pakistan
Serve.  Serving our new families and students comes with lots of growth-spurning conversations, research into our students  special education needs, conversations with students and parents as well as a healthy dose of time.   Serving is fun and exhausting.   We've already seen some great adjustments by some of our new students and we are confident that the God we serve will give us the strength we need to run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.  (Heb 12:1-2).

Love.   Love is such a simple, yet complex word.   Loving our students the way Christ loves us but not loving their destructive behavior and attitudes requires lots of prayer and consistency.   As we live, learn, love and teach others it is our prayer that we would love as we have been loved, blindly.   Not loved because of our looks, brains, socio-economic status, name, experiences or job, simply loved because we are His.   Ephesians 1:5 "In love He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will."

Please pray for us as we continue to live, love and serve.  We are daily dependent on the grace and wisdom of God who leads and directs our steps.   Pray specifically for our teachers and students with special needs.  

Thank you!  Thank you for your patience, your prayers and your faithful support.

Excited to be in First Grade