Our day yesterday was spent at the Native Heritage Center and doing service projects. We helped bag rice, painted a food pantry, worked at the salvation army, and helped Pastor Mark unload his moving van/semi trailer. Our theme was about breaking down the boundaries of poverty and reaching out and helping others. It felt good at the end of the day to be tired....it was a good tired.
The Native Heritage Center was awesome!!! So much to learn there. We watched native dancing and also Native Olympic Games. You will have to ask us about it......but don't ask ME to demonstrate! Ha! Learning about their different cultures has been a lot of fun and I believe the youth were intrigued by what they saw at the center.
A highlight for us all was last night when Angela and Lil Blue came to the church to see us again and taught us how to make a sun catcher. They were surprised how many of us really got into it. I have a feeling that many more will be made when we get back home. What made it all so special was they helped us make our souvenir to bring home to remind us of Alaska. The friendships that developed so fast was a blessing to be able to watch. Now every time we see our sun catchers we will remember them. (NOW to get them to come and visit us. ;) )
I think none of us really want the trip to totally end. Our last night became a "lock-in" with little to no sleep. Laughing, joking, cards, uno, heart to heart talks.....it was all there all night.
A year of planning and anticipating...fundraisers, meetings and prayers.....all to be fit into the 8 days we will never forget. Although this week is over, we imagine the possibilities that lie ahead. Everyone has changed in some way. It has enhanced our understanding of Gd, ourselves, and how God sees us. It helped us challenge ourselves to break down our own self made boundaries, whatever they may be....to view a bigger world than our own....to learn about others and other cultures. Everyday, we learned little ways to let Jesus in. The challenge is to do a few small things back in Marshall to keep what we've learned fresh in us and and our relationships there.
We will never be able to totally explain our adventures to you all. We will try to give you snapshots into our faith journey this week. But just as a picture doesn't truly capture the beauty of Alaska, words will not totally explain it all to you.
Know that Jesus took our imaginations far beyond where we could go on our own. With our Bible verse theme of Ephesians 3:20, we did learn that "God can do anything you know....far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams. He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, His Spirit gently within us." Daily in so many ways, with so many experiences, so many devotional times and studies....so many new and renewed relationships, His Spirit helped us Imagine No Boundaries!
Thanks so much again for all of your support and prayers....for your belief in youth ministry and what God is doing in all of the lives each and every day! God is good!