Monday, September 29, 2014

September Newsletter

Even though we are just four weeks into it, this school term has been very challenging and is stretching me in many different ways. Two of our permanent staff members are away on furlough right now, which means that there are lots of extra jobs to pick up and responsibilities to take on. It’s always amazing to me to find out how many little acts of service other people quietly do—you only notice when they aren’t being done any more! Praise the Lord though, He sent us two short termers who are being a huge help and blessing to us. Then, right as school started, we received word that one of our second grade students had been ill over the holiday, but would hopefully be joining us before the end of the week. A few days later we received the shocking news that he had just been killed in a car accident. While there haven’t been mass outpourings of grief from the students, there have been many little signs that the news impacted them deeply and that they are still thinking about it. How we pray that this tragedy will result in more intentional lives from our student who are already saved, and conviction in the lives of those who are not. How often we forget that our days are not ours to number, and that any day could be our last opportunity to serve the Lord and impact one of these precious lives. Third term is always busy, and this year is no exception! The students had fun preparing for the Dr. Seuss themed birthday party and now the next big event is half-term and the Copper Belt Sports Tour at the beginning of October. Our grade 7-9 students will travel down to compete against Amano Christian School and at least two other private schools in netball and soccer. It’s so good for our kids to have the chance to measure themselves against other athletes and practice their sportsmanship skills. Now that birthday party preparations are over, work on the end of term show will being. This year our theme is Christmas around the world. Later in the term my grade 7 students will be writing their national exams, so we are covering some specifically Zambian topics in class and starting to work through old exams in preparation. I have no worries about my students being able to come through with flying colors, but there is a lot of pressure put on them by their parents to do well. The main sitting room renovation project is drawing to a close; the door and windows were finally installed last week, most of the wiring is done, and the finishing touches such as painting and tiling are well underway. It will be such a blessing to have that space back; it’s one of the main hubs of school life. The kids gather there for video and music nights, we use it for staff meetings, evening fellowships, and other special events, and especially as the rains start up again it’s nice to have a place that is big enough to do things with large groups of kids. It’s been a long process, but we hope to get things finished off this term. Even though things have been more challenging than usual this term, it’s been really neat to see God working in and through us. We are always praying for either more staff to help us serve, or for extra grace, patience, and strength. I’ve been so amazed at how God has answered that prayer over the last few weeks. It would be so easy to become stressed and irritable with each other because of all the extra ‘stuff’ in our lives right now, but God is helping each of us to have an extra measure of gracious patience and love. While no one enjoys going through a stretching experience, I’m learning all over again that when the Lord calls you to do something hard He does not leave you without the resources to accomplish it. Praise Him for His faithfulness and goodness to His servants! Thanks again for all the support and prayers you send my way. I so appreciate knowing that people are thinking of me and Sakeji, and hearing from you about what God is doing in your lives. I couldn’t serve as effectively without you. May He find us faithful wherever He has called us to be!

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