His Grace Sustains Me

Hi Everybody! Long time no read.

First off, my life has been busy busy busy. Last week, my family moved from a 2 story, 4 bedroom 2 bath house, to a 5th wheel. A trailer, that comfortably fits mm, maybe 5. There’s 8 of us. Really squished, but we only had all 8 of us for 2 nights. Not that bad. Plus, now the boys have an outside tent, so there’s less of us in the trailer. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Last Saturday, I came home from Buck Creek really late, and went straight to bed on my comfortable mattress. I didn’t get up early enough to say goodbye to my brothers, but they went off on their adventures at Boy Scout Camp, I believe it was Merryweather. Or Merriweather. Either way. Sunday morning was church, then afterwards a meeting for those helping with VBS. I had offered my services to the music department pretty late, so after the main meeting, Karina, our wonderfully awesome leader, stayed behind to show me the motions she and her team had put together for the songs.

Then came lunch break. I had planned to stay and decorate, but was NOT looking forward to doing it by myself. Here is where the first GGM (God’s Grace Moment) came in. He provided help through my awesome friends, Rachel, and then later, Roshell. Rachel and I went to Safeway for lunch, and then came back to decorate, while Roshell got there just minutes after. We strung up  lots and lots of caution tape, hung up a string of flags of different countries, and then utilized the kids hanging around (our pastor’s precious and helpful kids) to be our models for “chalk” (tape) outlines. We posed them in interesting poses on the floor in our hallway and foyer. The kids had a blast, and were really good models. After we were done with all this, people started trickling in for evening service. I attended that, and then went home and relaxed.

The next day was VBS. Because we didn’t have as many volunteers this year, I was asked if I could be a team leader as well. I was assigned the 7-9 year olds, our country was India. 🙂 I love those kids. I had on average 9 kids each day. The regulars were Layla, her younger brother Breck, Jonathan, Hannah, Rhea, Colby, Naveah, Jayson, Carlie, and Payton. They all did pretty well the first day, those of them that were there, and I, while tired out that day, enjoyed having them in my group. The next day, Tuesday, has my 2nd GGM. We had some extra volunteers, so my friend Dan ended up helping me with my group. We went through our rotations just fine, and then we got to teaching time. Now, the weather outside was cloudy, and then during teaching time, it started to thunder. No rain, no lightning (as far as I know), just LOUD thunder. I thought it was so awe-some, but apparently one of my kids was severely afraid of thunder. But, because I had a helper, Dan was able to comfort and take care of the poor guy, and managed to keep him calm, while I could focus on the other kids. Or rather, on the girl that was claiming that she was feeling like she was going to throw up. I am so thankful for God’s timing. And thankfully, the girl never threw up.

The rest of the week turned out really well for VBS. On the other hand, in the afternoons was packing time! I managed to get my belongings down to a certain size, and then packed in our personal big totes. We were pretty on schedule until Wednesday, and somethings came up and put way behind schedule. That night was youth group, and so then I asked for help the next day packing and cleaning our general areas. Here’s the 3rd GGM. He provided a few of the youth/young people that were able to come and help pack and clean. We worked in the afternoon till dinner time, and got a lot done. Enough so as to cause my Mom to believe we were back on track. Friday morning was the last day of VBS, and went really well. Well, except for the run-through of the VBS program for later that day. We weren’t able to have the kids practice the whole thing before they had to leave, so we sent them on their way and prayed for the best. Mom ended up having to take my sister Anna and I to her doctor appointment in Salmon Creek, and so Anna and I ended up buying lunch at Albertsons and then eating it in a park like area while waiting for Mom. Next stop- Macy’s at the Vancouver Mall. Another instance of God’s excellent timing; I was able to procure a skirt that was good quality and out of my price range, because it was on a 1-Day Only sale, something I didn’t know about before arriving. God’s timing left me in awe and wonder, and very grateful. We got home only to find that we were behind schedule again-but this time, more drastically than before, as we had to be out of the house by 9pm that night! We started rushing around like organized chickens with their heads cut off, rushing to pack and move. Mom saw that we needed help, and had me call one of our deacons, who got right on it and started making the calls. We then saw the arrival of the amount of help we needed, and, by the grace of God (GGM #4), were out of the house about 10-20 minutes before the deadline.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot. The program for the VBS Parents night went swimmingly. Our prayers were answered, the kids did great, the parents enjoyed it immensely. (GGM #5)

Saturday was the day of moving in and unpacking slightly in the trailer. And I had a wedding to go to. 🙂 My wonderful friends Jessica and Matt got married in a beautiful ceremony in an air-conditioned church, and I had a good time. I got to basically follow my friend Rachel around, and met her brother Josh’s wife, Debbie, (a wonderful gal), and some family friends. Came back to the trailer, and helped Mom with stuff until dinner at the Hansons, our hosts, which was definitely filled with laughter!

Sunday was back to work, this time at the main campus of Camp Berachah. I’ve been fully integrated into work and play, with help from friends at Buck Creek who are now also working at Berachah. Andrew also has been able to go back into the swing of things. A quick GGM #6, I had been “running myself ragged” the week before, and was given two days off Tue and Wed, and was able to relax and basically, become a full fledged introvert to gather my energy back. I ended up going to a rodeo Wednesday afternoon and evening, and had a blast hanging out with my friends Rachel and Ruth and Marjorie and her boyfriend Dale.

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Now, for the moment you all might have been waiting for.

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I have felt, over the summer, that God wants me to work at a camp. Working at camp has so far been the only job where even on my “bad” days, I still want to come in and work the next day. Recognizing that working at camp can be a full time, year round job has lifted a before-unknown burden off my shoulders. Camp Berachah has a daycare like program called Berachah Club that they run during the school year. They have holidays off, as well as Spring breaks and such. Basically, we follow the school system. I have applied for one of their job openings, and am now praying that if this is were God want’s me to work, whether in Berachah Club, or possibly in the kitchen, that He would swing open wide the doors leading up to it. And if not, that He would soundly slam the door in my face. A little drastic, but I need definite answers. I know that if He wants me working there, there’s no one who can stop it, in the same way, if He doesn’t want me working there, there’s no one and nothing that can stop that either. I have been praying almost non stop about this opportunity, and I would appreciate if if y’all could pray with me.

Long post, but there was so much that God’s been doing in my life, and I didn’t want to forget any of it! 🙂

Love y’all, and thank you so much for reading and for caring.

Ellie ❤

 

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What the music team normally looked like. 🙂 Photo courtesy of Summer Steenbarger
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The last day of VBS was crazy day. Of course, the music team had to get in on the craziness! 🙂 Photo courtesy of Summer Steenbarger
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An example of our “chalk” outlines. Photo courtesy of Summer Steenbarger