Saturday, April 30, 2011

South Padre Island

My roommate, Samantha, had a birthday this past week, so a group of us took her to the beach to celebrate! The day started out cloudy but when the sun came out, it was beautiful! Winds were high, so the sand blew us to pieces, but we survived. Here are some snapshots of our time at South Padre Island! (Samantha is the girl in the green shirt.)

Friday, April 29, 2011

Sounds of Heaven

Yesterday, my good friends Alma and Lidia sang a gloriously beautiful song in chapel while I accompanied on the piano. Hope it blesses your day!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Spring Camp Out

A week ago, we had a marvelous time going on a campout as a school! We relaxed in God's creation, played soccer and tetherball, listened to messages, sang around the campfire, went swimming, performed skits, and enjoyed lots of fellowship. You can see pictures from the trip here.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Object Lessons Explained

It was fun to hear feedback from several of you on the object lessons from the last post. :-)

Here is a brief run-down of the answers:

The first picture shows Helen dressed in different articles of clothing with tags on them identifying different character qualities that a Christian should demonstrate. Her lesson was about "putting off" and "putting on" bad/good qualities, as we "put on the Lord Jesus Christ." The costume made the lesson come alive!

In the next two pictures, Sarah identified all the necessary ingredients for baking brownies. The point she made is that while each ingredient may not taste very good on its own, when they are all put together, something delicious results. It's the same with our lives. Sometimes difficult things happen (related to bitter tasting vanilla or cocoa on its own) but God uses all things together for good to produce a desirable result. While we may only want the "sugar" experiences, God knows we need the "baking powder" and "flour" as well to come out with a tasty product! (Sarah then proceeded to let everyone sample the brown lesson!)

Erin is pictured next with various things that are made from wood or grown from trees, and to be honest, I can't remember the analogy she was trying to make...but I think it was something like God's ability to take the same item (a tree) and produce many different things from it. I remember it being a really good lesson...I guess I should have been paying better attention!

Jada gave a great object lesson about how we use our time. Marshmallows represented top priorities like reading the Bible, praying, going to church, witnessing to others, etc. M&Ms represented necessary time pursuits for daily living like cooking, exercising, studying, working, etc. Finally, sugar represented the "extras" of life like hobbies, time on the internet, watching television/movies, etc. When sugar fills up the cup (life) first, and then M&Ms go on top, there is little to no room left for the marshmallows. However, when the marshmallows go in the cup first, then the M&Ms, and lastly the sugar, everything fits perfectly. This is the way it should be in our lives with the way we spend our time.

The last few pictures show the presentation I gave using a palm tree as my object lesson. Those of you who guessed flexibility were right! least for one of the three points. The basis for my talk was the verse: "The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree." Palm trees are victorious in the face of storms and even hurricanes, often being the only type of tree left standing when a fierce storm blows through. This is because of the palm tree's incredible root system and it's ability to bend with flexibility in the wind rather than snapping in half. In a similar way, God has given us as believers the ability to be victorious and flourish even in the storms by being rooted in Christ and by being flexible, accepting changes or hard times and rejoicing in all things. The third point is that the longer a palm tree endures, the sweeter it's fruit. God tells us as Christians not to be weary in well doing for in due season, we shall reap...if we faint not.

Everyone in the class did a great job with their lessons (only a few are pictured here) and I think we all learned a lot in the process! Slowly but surely, the Spanish language is coming along. Writing speeches and preparing presentations like this is proving to be a tremendous help in the learning journey!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Making Music Together

Last night, a spring concert took place here at school featuring a special guest pianist as well as several faculty staff. I participated as pianist accompaniment for a flute trio and also played a duet for two pianos. The Lord answered prayer and took away the usual nervous jitters I experience whenever I have to perform - what a blessing! It was a lovely evening of music. Pictured above are guest pianist Tricia Jeske, Ruth Windle (the president's wife and director of our music department), Alma Varela (grammar/flute/voice teacher), myself, and Luis Tyler (professor of Biblical languages).
Alma is not just a wonderful teacher but a dear friend and mentor.