Saturday, November 28, 2009

Week nine

Good morning (or whatever time this is that you are reading my post)! I hope that you have had great week and an awesome Thanksgiving. We haven't really celebrated Thanksgiving yet, but the plan is the have a big meal today. I am excited for many reasons, but ranking high on the list is that my family is going to be coming! I wasn't looking forward to spending Thanksgiving without them, and now I won't have to!

This past week has been quite nice. With the team that came from the States, there has been a little less stress and we are definitely able to accomplish more in a day. There are two girls who are staying here at the house and helping out with the kids, and then there are eight guys who are staying out at the school and building what will soon be the new house. It's exciting to see all of the progress they have made. Their goal is the get the house finished enough to move into by Christmas. That's so cool!!! God truly is amazing and it's great to see how He meets needs!

As far as my class goes, this week has brought some different changes and new challenges. My class has been moved back out into the open room because of all the construction. I wasn't sure how I would like it at first, but I moved to a different place than where I was before and I haven't had to deal with too much distraction.

My students are all making progress in their strong suits, but all of them still have things to work on. Estefania is improving by leaps and bounds in her reading and Juan Jesus (J.J.) is get ever so much better in Math. Mishelle is doing great in her cursive and I think that I can finally move her on to the next book. Andres is improving on his reading aloud -- it's so fun to listen to him trying to put the accent on the right place in the sentence! Juanito is doing great. I can't even believe that he is the same kid that I started the year with. It's so encouraging to see the improvement that he has made in the last few weeks! God is so good! Cinthya I am still struggling with to find a system of learning that is suited to her. She has improved, but not as much as I would like to see. I really just need some more time with her. Please pray that God would continue giving me wisdom as I teach His children!

Thursday was youth group and I had the chance of attending after... wow... three weeks of not going! It was really great to see all of my friends again and I felt like I learned a lot from the study. We are still working in the study "One True God". The thing I like most about the study is that it's kind of like proving Theorems. If you have ever done Geometry you'll know what I am talking about. In the study you are presented with a truth and then given verses that prove the truth, but you have write out how they prove the truth. I like this way much better than most other forms of study I have seen over the years. It really makes you think about what you are reading!

Yesterday we had our first serious "school accident" involving kids of the year. Mishelle (my student, though she does have the same name as Michelle, co-director of the school) fell while playing tug-a-war and got a nice cut on her head. It wasn't anything really serious, but her parents came and got her and took her to get some stitches. I am hoping that they don't see it necessary to keep her home from school this Monday.

Well, other than that it has been a pretty average week. I feel absolutely and wonderfully blessed by all the women I work alongside and God has truly been giving me the strength necessary to face every new day! I pray that you have a blessed week!
Matthew 6:31-34
31"Do not worry then, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear for clothing?' 32"For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34"So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

In Everything give thanks!

1 Thessalonians 5:18
In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
Thanksgiving has come upon us again! I can't believe how quickly time has passed and how much my life has changed. I remember Thanksgiving in the States... and Thanksgiving here in Mexico... but this will be my first Thanksgiving away from home. It is kind of strange. I have been such a house-body all of my life and most of my memories are with my family. As I have been here at the school I have begun to form my own memories that are somehow apart from my family and I guess that this Thanksgiving will be one of them.

I have always loved Thanksgiving more than most other holidays because of the wonderful history behind it. I just love the idea of setting aside a day of the year to get together as a family and thank God for His grace and all the good things that He has done in our lives throughout the year. Because, honestly, how often do you sit down and really consider all of the things that God has blessed you with? If we all focused more on what we have and less on what we want, we would all realized just how fortunate we are.

That's why I want to dedicate this post to remembering God's goodness. As I was thinking about what to write I picked up my Bible and looked up the word "'thanksgiving". I was amazed at the amount of verses I saw. Here are a mere handful of what I found.
Psalm 95:1-5
1O come, let us sing for joy to the LORD,
Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.
2Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving,
Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
3For the LORD is a great God
And a great King above all gods,
4In whose hand are the depths of the earth,
The peaks of the mountains are His also.
5The sea is His, for it was He who made it,
And His hands formed the dry land.

Psalm 92:1-2
1It is good to give thanks to the LORD
And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High;
2To declare Your lovingkindness in the morning
And Your faithfulness by night.

Psalm 28:7
The LORD is my strength and my shield;
My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped
Therefore my heart exults,
And with my song I shall thank Him.

1 Chronicles 16:8-9
8Oh give thanks to the LORD, call upon His name;
Make known His deeds among the peoples.
9Sing to Him, sing praises to Him;
Speak of all His wonders.
Here's my list of things that I want to thank God for this year:
  • My family. As always, my family has been such an enormous blessing in my life. They are such a great group!
  • My friends. I couldn't individually mention any of them because they are all such wonderful people. I have truly been given above and beyond what I deserve in this respect!
  • Food to eat and roof under which to sleep.
  • Computers! It has been so awesome being able to keep in contact with all my friends near and far.
  • Those little moments that make life so special. I feel so loved when God not only gives me what I need, but more than I could ever ask for in precious memories and beautiful moments!
  • Being apart from my family. It's been hard, but it has taught me to value free time and family.
  • For not having. It has taught me to appreciate little things more than I used to.
  • God's provision of daily needs.
  • For long walks on the beach during which I have learned to understand the worth of a "time in the desert".
  • For trials. As God's Word says, tribulations produce perseverance and perseverance a proven character (Romans 5:3).
  • For my Bible. I have come to see it as my best friend!
  • For music. It's one of God's best gifts!
  • For those who have gone before. It's such an encouragement to be able to see how others were able to go through the same things I am dealing with and, through God's grace, come through victorious!
  • For hard situations in which I have felt under-qualified. They have taught me to rely more on God's grace and less on my own resources.
  • For my Savior's willingness to die for my sins. That is the greatest gift and most precious blessing of all!!!
Before I finish this post I want to challenge you to stop what you are doing for a moment, grab a pen and paper and write down 10 things that God has blessed you with. Once you finish that, write down 5 things that have happened in your life in the past year (or more) and what God has taught you through them. When we give thanks to God we need to remember that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). That means that you can look at the bad things too and God WILL have them work together for good... it might be hard to see that now, but you can trust in His promises!
I pray that you take the time this Thanksgiving, amid all the hustle and bustle of festivities, to sit down and remind yourself of how awesome a God you serve!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Week 8

And so ends this week... well, so ended this week Sunday, but I didn't get around to posting until today so for the sake of retaining my reputation of being always punctual, let's just say that the week ended today! ;)

Anyway has been quite a nice week. It wasn't exactly easy with Petra being gone and all, but a friend of mine came to help out and she was a real blessing. Michelle got back into the swing of things Tuesday and that really eased the load. All week we were dealing with a stomach flu that was passing around the house from kid to kid. I am not sure what it was, but praise God it was really only a 24 hour bug and then it was gone. Still, I had to clean up a little bit more puke than I would have liked!

My class has been going very well. I feel like all of my students are making progress and one girl especially seems to have finally begun to understand reading. She isn't reading alone yet, but she is improving mby leaps and bounds! One thing I have noticed is that I am able to maintain a higher level of order in the class than I was able to at first. It's nice when I can tell the kids to do something and they do it without me having to repeat myself!

The week went normally until Wednesday evening when I got sick with the same bug (or food poisening, not sure which it was). It was pretty miserable. Did I mention that I hate the flu? Well, I do!!! When did I say that I would prefer the flu to a cold? ... actually, I think that I might, but at the time of being sick I would rather have had anything else... Ana (the lady who came to help out) was a real sweetheart and was really sympathetic even when I woke her in the middle of the night. In the morning I still felt bad and David and Michelle left me at the house. I pretty much slept all morning and when they got home David took Ana and I to the bus station so that we could catch a bus home. It could be that it wasn't that smart of me to travel home sick like that, but I figured that I could either be sick and miserable here or sick and miserable at home. And frankly, it would be more comfortable at home!

By the time I got home, I actually felt much better -- except for a monster of a headache -- and I even was well enough to consider eating some soup!

The next morning -- Friday -- I felt totally better and ready to face the day! We had a great Bible study together as a family and then everyone began attacking their various tasks for the day. Amazingly enough I never found myself board and I think that I might have even almost caught up on spending time with all of my siblings. All in all, I think that I spent my time in a manner worthy!

On Sunday we went to church and heard an awesome message about faithful reading of God's Word. The key verse for the sermon was Psalm 119:105. I suppose that the entire chapter could be the focus since it all speaks on the importance of God's Word!

Sunday evening my parents took me into the bus station and I was able to treat my parents to dinner. I don't get to do that very often, so it was special. We had a nice dinner albeit rushed since I had to get the the bus stop in time for my bus. When the time came I said my goodbyes, gave hugs and got on the bus.

When I got back to the house Petra was back. Yea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And with her she had brought reinforcements. Ten people came back with her and will be here until we break in Decmember. They have been such a blessing even this one day that they have been here. It is so nice to have an extra -- or more -- pair of hands! It's because of this that I actually have time right now to update my blog! It is really nice! God is good and worthy of being praised! He brings circumstances that make us stretch, but then He is always faithful to bring those times of rest!

Well, I am going to leave of with this. The dinner bell is ringing and I must fly!
Be blessed and walk with God!

Psalm 119:89-93
89Forever, oh Lord, Your Word is stteled in
90Your faithfuless continues throughout all generations;
You established the earth, and it stands.
91They stand this day
according to Your ordinances, for all things are Your
92If Your lawe had not been my delight, then I would have perished in my
93I will never forget Your precepts, for by them You
have revived me.

Psalm 119:105
Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Week seven -- God is good!

After a somewhat stressful and not-so-uneventful week, I am finally sitting down. The house is almost empty but for the few children who did not leave yesterday... I have a had time remembering that this is Friday... it is never this quiet on a Friday. Anyway, let's see if I can relate in a coherent manner the happenings of these past few days.

As most of you know, Michelle came down sick on Thursday of last week. Petra left on Sunday leaving... me! It was an interesting Sunday and Monday (since it was pretty much just me and Laura -- the Bonsells' oldest daughter -- doing everything). Monday afternoon, however, I received a message from my parents that two single ladies from our church wanted to come and help out for a week or so here at the school. I was so extremely relieved to hear this, as well as thankful since I knew that it was God who had orchestrated it all.

Tuesday morning my Dad brought the two women to Los Mochis and everything seemed to just slide back into normal routine. I felt -- and still feel -- kind of strange being the go-to person on everything. Before the kids would always ask me permission for something and I would tell them to go "ask Petra", now it's just me so I have to make all those decisions... I think I prefer being able to divert traffic and let Petra decide ;^) !
Anyway, Ana and Berlinda -- the two ladies -- we a big help here at the house and also at the school. Ana helped out in Michelle's class and Berlinda was able to give me a hand with my kids.

Tuesday went pretty normal and on Wednesday Michelle was feeling well enough to help by driving the kids to school in the morning. It seemed like we were going to have Michelle back in school by Sunday... or so we thought.
Thursday was pretty much routine in the morning. We got up, I went down to make breakfast (which ended up being oatmeal mush, since I left it cooking too long... the kids graciously ate it with very little comments). At 7:30a.m. all of the kids got into their respective cars to wait for David and Michelle. We were running rather late and Michelle was still in the house doing some last minute errands. I was in the car in the passenger seat when Michelle came out. She walked up to the side door and was getting ready to close it when she suddenly collapsed in a seizure. I ran up to get David and he came running downstairs. Once we had gotten Michelle up onto a chair I took all of the kids inside to get them calmed down... you can imagine what that was like. Almost all of the 15+ kids with us had seen what had happened and we bawling hysterically. We all went into the living room and prayed together and then I put on a movie to calm them down. During this time, David had managed to get Michelle upstairs and in bed.

The last time Michelle had a seizure was about 10 years ago. David is pretty sure that this seizure was brought on by the fact that since Michelle was sick she hadn't been faithfully taking her medication and also that she didn't rest long enough after being sick. As of right now Michelle is doing much better, though she really chewed up her mouth during the seizure, so she can't really talk. Almost all of the kids were sent home yesterday and today I will be leaving to spend the weekend at home.

Keep the Bonsell family and the school in your prayers. God is most definitely watching over us, but I know that we all really appreciate the extra prayer!
Blessings! Stand firm on God's promises and know that He is a God of mercy and faithfulness!
Deuteronomy 32:3-4
3"For I proclaim the name of the LORD;
Ascribe greatness to our God!
4"The Rock! His work is perfect,
For all His ways are just;
A God of faithfulness and without injustice,
Righteous and upright is He.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I'm on the voting list!

I have been nominated in "Best teen girl blog" over at THE POST. Kind of strange to see my blog name appear on a site like that, but I suppose it is nice! I feel quite flattered... though I think that most of the reason that I am on the list is because someone (aka: Mom) hacked my site and put a button on my sidebar. Thanks for thinking of me, Mom!
So, anyway, if you would like to vote for my blog just give a click on the button below!

Join Me at The Homeschool Post!

Have a great day! God bless your steps! Keep walking the path laid before you... just make sure that you are doing it God's way, not your own!
Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Week five... and into week six

Well, here I am almost at the end of week six and I am finally getting around to writing week five... and I guess that most of this is week six anyway! I suppose that this is normal for me. I do have reasons, but I really have been trying to be more faithful. At least I have managed to get one post a week! It's nice to know that people are able to keep track of me in a small way!

Last week I got to have a nice, long weekend with my family, made possible by the fact that "Dia De Los Muertos" fell on Monday and therefore we had no school. I don't like Halloween, in fact I would say that the closest thing you could compare my feelings to would be hate, but I did appreciate the extra day of rest. I was able to take a nice walk on the beach -- can you believe that it had been more than two months since I'd done that?! -- play scrabble with my Parents -- Dad won... -- tease my siblings, and even play worship with my family on Sunday! All in all it was very relaxing. You know, I really miss my house. I used to be that sometimes the only thing that I wanted to do was get out of the house -- not in a bad way... just a little bit of a break -- but now I find myself just wanting to be home sitting at the kitchen table and chatting with my Mom... I think that even if it were for nothing else, this time here at the school has taught me to love my family even more than I did before!! Love you guys!

After having spent a weekend at the beach -- that sounds much more glamorous than it was -- the time came for me to go back to Los Mochis. Michelle and David picked me up at the bus station Monday night and the next morning it was back to school! Tuesday's school was very laid back. I had only three of my six students and the ones I had were my "easy" kids. The one thing that made it hard was the fact that I got hit with something like allergies while I was teaching. I have never had allergies in my life, and I am not even sure if what I got was allergies, but since it only seemed to get me when I went into my classroom I assume that it had to have been something of the kind... besides, if I admit that it was I would be admitting that I am coming down with something.... and I really don't want to be coming down with something right now!!!

Yesterday was the hard day. The morning wasn't that difficult. For me it was the normal "fight against the flesh" to get up in the morning and then the rush to get out of the house before 7:45am. School went well -- one of my students is finally beginning to understand the concept of addition! yea! In the afternoon we came home and had tuna gravy on bread (hmmm...??) and then all the kids went out to the park to play.
In the evening is when things started getting a little more hectic. Michelle had been complaining of a headache all day but by 5:00pm her headache had gotten worse and added to that was a slight fever. She went up to take a rest and not much after that David came down to tell us that she was worse. Today school was canceled and a doctor came to see Michelle. His diagnosis was that she has a throat infection and is to stay in bed until Saturday at the earliest.... this means that there won't be any school tomorrow, though we will have the kids here at the house doing some worksheets and catching up where they are behind.

Keep me in your prayers as this Sunday Petra will be leaving for the States to attend her brothers wedding. I know that it is going to be a very long two weeks while she is gone, but I also know that God is faithful and won't put anything on me that I can't handle. Granted, I might be doubled over and groaning from the weight, but I won't fall!!! I don't suppose that anyone wants to come down next week and stay on to help while Petra's gone? lol

Anyway, I hope that you have a great week! I'll be back on here soon to update you all! Let God be the strength of your life today, tomorrow and all the tomorrows that follow that! Don't ever let anything get between you and what God wants for you... and especially don't forget to pray and read the Bible in order to find out what God's will for you is!