Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Family Update

Todd and Brenda finished their Bible Clubs nearing the end of April. Once again, we were able to see the Lord working in the lives of the children we ministered to. Todd also enjoyed working with Isaac Rajkowski, a volunteer at one of his clubs. It was refreshing to see Isaac's desire to serve God and others. Our new club at Hedges Elementary was eagerly anticipated by our children. They loved having a club at their school so they could invite their friends and classmates. We all enjoyed teaching this club as a family. We were saddened to conclude this club because its attendance more than tripled in the last month.

On Father's Day, our Children's Church class at Central Bible Church was excited to sing a song to honor their fathers in their new tie-dye shirts. During the preceding weeks, Brenda and Linea worked with each child as they were able to color their own t-shirts. Brenda has also been able to help with two special needs teens that attend this class.

Over the past week, Brenda and Levi taught a Kindergarten class at Central Bible Church's Vacation Bible School. The highlight of our time was how enthralled the children were with our flannel graph telling of Jesus' death. The old flannel graph was new to them as was the understanding that Jesus would have died for just one of them because of His amazing love for each individual.

Once again, this summer Todd will be assisting as needed at Big Sky Bible Camp. He is planning on speaking for the junior weeks and counselling during Camp Promise. Camp Promise is the program Big Sky Bible Camp has for the mentally and physically challenged individuals.

Please continue to pray for Todd's health. As many of you have heard, Todd has been dealing with back and abdominal pain over the past six months. After many doctor's appointments and months of no answers, we were finally able to find the source of his pain. A mass was found on his stomach lining. He will schedule the removal for after the camping season as doctors believe there is no immediate danger.

Alanna is home for the summer! She enjoyed attending Corban University over the past school year and hopes to attend there again in the Fall if finances permit. While she has been working on her business majors, she has also been able to work on a minor in Bible. She was able to used the skills she has learned over the years to help with a Good News Bible Club in the Salem area. She hopes to buy a car so she will be able to work off campus during the school year. She was blessed to be rehired by Lowe's and will be working full-time hours for the duration of the summer. We are trusting the Lord to provide for her outstanding additional tuition expenses.

Linea will be a senior this Fall! She is glad that school is out for the year because she worked hard in her higher level classes. Linea continues to bless people with her beautiful voice as she sings at recitals and church. This summer she is working at Big Sky Bible Camp and fulfilling many roles such as counsellor and work crew member.

Levi is quite the gentleman. He has been doing great in Middle School as he earns straight A's and his teachers' admiration. He is also good with the children, especially the baby, and will be a great help to Brenda this summer.

Danae is a beautiful and wonderful young lady. She excels at everything she puts her mind to. Even though her many gifts are endless, she has been blessed with a humble heart and attitude.

Megan is a loving, sweet child. She has a real heart for her lost friends and enjoys telling them about Jesus. She even brought one of her friends to Christ, giving her the steps to salvation and a Bible! Pray for us as we decide whether she would do better acdemically and socially at home next year.

Brett is a typical boy. He loves rocks, dirt, and bugs. In school, he excels in every area and has many friends. He is excited that he will be able to attend Clinton Community Church's Men's Retreat with Todd and Levi.

Mallory will be entering Kindergarten in the Fall although she is sure she knows it all already! She is our adorable, adventurous, active little fireball, and has yet to realize that she is no longer the baby of the family.

Isaiah will be two soon! We can hardly believe he has been in our home for almost a year. He has grown in in so many ways. He is a smart, content little guy. We all love him so much. Adoption papers are in process and we hope to finalize in September. At this time he is doing well, but he has dealt with some serious eating disorders. Please pray for us as this can be very frustrating.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Update: Isaiah

Isaiah has now been with us for five months. In the past few months he has continued to grow and thrive in his new home. January 5th, Isaiah's birth mother signed off parental rights because of her inability to ever provide for Isaiah. His biological father has already been out of the picture for quite some time. Now the process of finding Isaiah a permanent home has begun, and we are excited to once again be part of this process. We hope to adopt Isaiah as soon as possible although this process could take up to 6 months. Isaiah has been a great blessing to our family.

Our Central Bible Church family continues to be an encouragement to us also as we see more young couples become foster parents. This is a two-fold blessing in that we are able to see how by our example in obeying God we have impacted others to do the same and that well-deserving children are finding godly homes. Please pray for the hearts of prospective foster parents as the need is exceedingly great.

Friday, January 14, 2011

2011 is Here!

The New Year is a great time to reflect on the previous year as well as to look to the year ahead. We, as a family, have been able to see God's hand this past year through the work He has called us to do. We were kept busy by Bible Clubs and Children's Church as well as with Todd's additional work at Costco and the children's responsibilities with school and homework.

We started Bible Clubs the first week of November. We are teaching four clubs after school each week: Monday at Hedges Elementary, Tuesday at Olney-Bissell School, Wednesday at Cayuse Prairie School, and Thursday at Smith Valley School. These clubs incorporate learning about the Bible and the gospel message in an exciting way with games, crafts, and various other activities. It is surprising to observe how many children do not know that at Christmas we celebrate Jesus' birthday and at Easter, His death. We added the Hedges club this year as this is the school our children, Danae, Megan, and Brett, attend. They have been excited with this addition and the opportunity for their friends and classmates to enjoy and benefit from this club. Todd is the main teacher for all our clubs, but we all have been able to help with the Hedges club because of its location. Brenda's job for these clubs include putting together crafts and activities as well as providing each child at each club with a cookie or other treat each week. The clubs range in size for about ten children to well over thirty children. This year, Todd has been going through the Old Testament and is using Footsteps of Faith, Volume 3 "Fighting Giants in Canaan." Todd has been blessed with a godly homeschooled high school senior, Isaac Rajkowski, to help him with his Wednesday club, but we are always looking for people willing to help. If you or someone you know would be willing in this area please contact us. Along with going to clubs, there our other areas were you could volunteer. These include baking cookies or planning crafts.

In the end of October, Todd started working part-time at Costco. Costco hired him for the Christmas season. Although he was laid off December 23rd, management was optimistic about him being hired on again soon as they were happy with his work. Todd has been working this job in order to make ends meet as the economic downturn has had an large effect on our income. This job should only extend until the end of the Spring.