Sunday, November 26, 2006

Earthquakes, Turkey, and the Beach!

Aloha! Well, this Thanksgiving was far from typical. My dad, brother, and sister were able to come out to Kona to celebrate Thanksgiving with me, and it was an eventful day to say the least. In the morning, as we were getting ready to head over to campus (from the hotel where they were staying), we felt a couple small earthquakes. So crazy! It was a small reminder of what happened a little over a month ago, when Kona felt a huge earthquake here. This was not nearly as bad. But I can't help but wonder if I should expect more quakes during my time here...
After getting over to the U of N for brunch, we headed to Children's beach for a little bit. Man, we had such awesome weather! It was in the 80's and very sunny. Anyhow, later in the day we all had Thanksgiving dinner with everyone from my school. Josh, Angie, and Dad joined us. It was such a fun day! And we even had a big dessert with the entire campus later that evening. It was a really fantastic day. Although, it didn't quite feel like Thanksgiving. I wish I could have shared this special Holiday with all of you...

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

It's almost Turkey Day!

Happy nearly-Thanksgiving everybody! So, I just wanted to post a couple pics...I got to go to another really cool beach last weekend. (These are just a couple pictures from that day. The beach we went to is in front of a residential area so it's well kept and super beautiful. One picture is of Amy, Margit, and Kristine eating pixie sticks. The other one is me and Amy.) We had such a relaxing time there, and we had perfect beach weather.
So, is everyone excited for Thanksgiving? I wish I could be with all of you! But the cool thing is that my dad, brother, and sister are coming to Kona for Thanksgiving! Their flight just landed and they'll be on their way over to the campus soon. I am so excited! Well, I hope you are all doing well. May your Thanksgiving be blessed and may you be surrounded by those you love! I love all of much.

Monday, November 20, 2006

A Day in the Life of a YWAMer

Hello everybody! No pictures to post right now, but I thought it would be fun to walk you through a typical day/week for me at U of N Kona. So, in the mornings I get up around 5:30 to pray and read my Bible, then go for a run by about 6:00. Sometimes I run with my friend Amy, and sometimes I go alone. The thing about Kona, is that even when it's still dark out in the morning, it's probably not less then 65 degrees. So, it's never really cold when I run in the mornings. After a run, we have until 7:15 to grab breakfast. Then I shower and get ready for the day.
So, Monday through Friday, class starts at 8 am. A couple mornings a week we begin with worship. Other mornings are for intercession (praying together, but asking God what He wants us to pray about, and praying on behalf of others), and then one morning a week we have a pretty intense Bible Study with teachers from the School of Biblical Studies here (it is a really intense school that studies and reads through the entire Bible 5 times in 9 months). We usually start our class lecture time by 9, and our speaker for the week talks for a while. These times can be pretty intense. I have learned a lot from the speakers so far. Last week we learned about spiritual warfare and I was blown away. So, lecture goes until 12:30 pm and then we grab lunch. After lunch I have free time on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. But on Wednesday and Friday, our class meets up again at 1:30 for additional class time. Wednesdays are for small group meetings, which are so cool because now we are meeting with our Outreach Teams for small groups and really getting to know each other. Then, Fridays at 1:30 is our school's process time. So, we talk about the week and have time to share what we've learned. Sometimes we do this in discussion groups, other times we make play-dough sculptures or do creative activities to demonstrate what we've learned.
Later in the afternoons(during the week) is work duty, from 3 to 5 pm. Pretty much everyone on campus has a work duty. I personally think mine is the best: hospitality. But anyhow, some people have work duty from 3 to 5 every week day, other people have it early in the morning and help out with breakfast, and then some people have it on the weekends. My work duty schedule is pretty flexible, and I can usually get the work done whenever I have time. But my team is so fun, so we usually work all together at the normal time. We pretty much lucked out with our Hospitality work duty. I make birthday cards and thank you cards, we clean the classroom, and plan the menu for our school's snack and then we go shopping at Costco every Friday. Other people spend their work duty in the kitchen, or out mowing lawns. I got hooked up with hospitality!
Once work duty is done in the afternoons, people go to dinner. This is usually a pretty mellow time. Everyone eats kind of slow and just relaxes. One thing that does make me sad, though, is that we hardly ever have dessert. But what a silly thing to complain about! I don't know why I even wrote about it! After dinner, our evenings are totally free to do whatever we want. Except for Thursdays, when we have our weekly corporate meeting in Ohana Court. It's kind of like a church service. We sing worship and then usually hear a message. Sometimes it is REALLY boring. And sometimes it's really good.
On the weekends, we are totally free. Sometimes people rent cars and take day trips to the beach or to the volcano. Other people hitchhike or walk to get around. And if you're really lucky, you make a friend who has a car here and then get a ride with them whenever they go somewhere. One of my staff leaders, Jessica, has a car here, so that's been a blessing. She is super generous with giving people rides and stuff. That's the great thing about this place. Everyone is so willing to give! That is what the church is supposed to look like...everyone working and living together and making sure that people's needs are met. I could tell so many stories of how people provide for one another here, whether it's finances for Outreach or random things like cameras. God really speaks to people, and the people here are listening and obeying!
Well, this was kind of a long entry. I hope those of you who actually read the whole thing find it somewhat interesting. If not, I'm sorry for taking up your time :) But thanks to everyone out have been so encouraging and I'm really loving it out here in Kona. God bless you all today!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Hapuna Beach

So, last weekend I went to Hapuna beach with a bunch of people. It was really great! I tried all week to get these pictures up and it just wouldn't work. So, they are.
I have had so many opportunities to go to cool beaches on the island. I can't believe I am going to the beach in the middle of November. The weather has been really warm the 80's. And it hasn't been raining much at all. I seriously love Hawaii so much.
Hope everyone out there is doing really well. I miss you all and love you lots!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Team PNG

Here is the Outreach Team you've been waiting to see! Team PNG!
Back row: Amy, Bella, Ryan, Zack, Karen, and Vern
Front row: me, Jeenie, Susanna
So, we all ate dinner together tonight and found out some cool things about our upcoming trip. We will be flying out of Kona on December 23rd, and arriving in Sydney, Australia on Christmas Eve. Then, we're going to spend the night in the airport and fly out to Papua New Guinea the next morning, Christmas Day. What an adventure, huh!? So, if you are looking for ways to pray for us, I've got some ideas:
1. That we would decide on a place to stay in PNG (right now we have a couple options, and both are in the area of Mt. Hagen)
2. That everyone on our team would get all our Outreach fees (the due date is Thanksgiving Day)
3. Pray also for health, and safety...we need God's protection!
Thanks everyone for all your prayers. I know it has made such a difference in my time here already.
I love you all!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

It's already November? Where did October go?

Well, sometimes I forget to update this page. So, here are a couple fun pictures... the bottom one is from the Harvest Festival (on Halloween), which was an event in the community that we volunteered to help out with. Basically, kids dressed up in costumes and played games and got prizes. Amy and I were in charge of a bowling game, and at the end of the night it felt like we had done a million squats, because we had to bend down every 2 seconds and set up all 10 bowling pins, over and over and over. It was fun, though, and we laughed a lot.
The other photo is of Charlie, Amy, and Matt as we were hitch-hiking to Hapuna this weekend. It was a very pretty beach, but unfortunately it rained on us not long after we arrived. We were all a bit gloomy after that. The main adventure was actually getting there. Life in Kona is always an adventure!
I love you guys and miss you lots.