Saturday, December 17, 2011

He Is Human Like Us

This fall, our Children’s lessons focused on Jesus’ miracles and it was great to see the kids realize Jesus had amazing powers, because He is God. Several of the young boys talked about Jesus like he was a superhero, with superpowers, like healing blind people, curing leprosy, and raising the dead.

We started the Christmas lessons, and have been emphasizing Jesus’ birth and the fact that He was born a baby, and grew up as a person, just like them. He knew what it was like to fall down and hurt his knee, to have friends who disappointed Him, and to grow up in a poor home. I liked that as we did the lessons, the boys would realize the truth that Jesus is like us. He’s fully human and fully God, and because He’s human, He understands us, knows our pain, and understands our hurts. And because He’s fully God, He can do something about it and does.

It made me happy to see the kids realizing that Jesus was just like them and He knows their hurts and pains.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


The past two Thursdays, Bill Yarbrough and I got our D-Groups together to take some firewood to an elder. The firewood was cut by some teams in the spring and has been curing over the summer. Last week we loaded the wood in the trailer and this week we delivered the wood, stacking some and putting the rest in a pile. Last week my guys were complaining, and it gave me a chance to explain how it's good to help our elders, especially a single woman who can't chop her own wood. This week, they didn't complain and went with it.

It was a good time with the guys and they had fun working together and competing against Bill's guys. I think they also enjoyed helping the elder and it made me really happy when she shook their hands and thanked them. She asked each who they were and talked about how she knew their grandparents or uncles and so forth.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Troublemaker

When ‘the troublemaker’ climbed out the van, I immediately thought, “Oh boy. I’ve to keep an eye on him and he’ll be going home soon.” ‘The troublemaker’ doesn’t usually come to Bible Study and when he does, he winds up going home early. He hadn’t been around since April and May when he was sent home three of the four weeks he came. I didn’t expect much from him and kept an eye on him, waiting for him to throw rocks, hit a kid, knock stuff over, or cause mayhem. And, it never happened. He played well, ate supper, colored, sang, and eventually joined my small group.

Throughout the whole time with the children, ‘the troublemaker’ was exemplary. I ask my boys questions from the lesson, and it got to the point where I said, “Ok, this question is for everyone else,” because ‘the troublemaker’ was answering every single one and I didn’t get to hear from the others. As the evening progressed, I asked the kids, “What’s something that we learn about Jesus?” And he pipes up, “He heals us!” When we did the craft, ‘the troublemaker’ painted a big heart on his page, so I asked if he knew what a heart represented and he did. I asked him, “Who do you love?” And he answered, “I love Jesus.”

It’s amazing how God works in the hearts of the children. Even those we don’t see for months. How He convicts us of our lack of faith. How He shows us what He’s doing in the lives of these kids. I don’t know what the future holds for this kid, but when he left he asked me, “Can I be your helper next week?” My heart welled up with tears and I told him: “Yes, you did a great job tonight, and I’m looking forward to next week.”

Monday, September 26, 2011

Jesus Is God?

On Tuesday night, Chris Granberry was talking after we sang a song and mentioned that Jesus is God, and one of the boys sitting near me perked up and asked me, “Jesus is God? How can Jesus be God? I thought God is God?” I told the boy that Jesus is God and we’ll talk about it more during the story time.

I was excited because our lesson was about the paralyzed man whose friend brought him to Jesus through a hole in the roof. In the story, Jesus forgives the man’s sins, causing a controversy because only God can forgive sins. I don’t know if the child now believes that Jesus is God, but now he is exposed to the idea. It’s strange but normal out here for kids to grow up never hearing the idea that Jesus is God.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Week 2 & Baptisms

Week 2 is over and Team Week 3 is about to begin. It's been a really good couple of weeks mixed with lots of hearty hellos and sad goodbyes. Much work is being done on houses and Kid's Clubs, both here and in Warm Springs. I think we are all feeling a bit tired, but are pressing on.

We had another baptism service this week. I was really happy to see the baptisms of 2 children and 2 youth, who were part of children's ministry until they were recently promoted. It made me happy to think of the impact of children's ministry on the kids, both recently and in the past . You can see the video of the baptisms by clicking here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Jesus is for Gangsters Too!

The first week of teams is gone and it was good week. We roofed 4 ¼ houses in White Swan, hosted Kid’s Clubs at two housing projects, and had Tuesday night Bible Study. The team in Warm Springs also had a good week!

This week at Bible Study, our lesson was on Noah and how just as the safe place for Noah’s family was in the ark, our safe place is in Jesus. One of our crafts involved a picture of a child that is glued on a picture of an ark, and one of my guys decorated his picture so that the child looked like a gangster. He has a fascination with gangsters, and left to his own devices would likely become one. When we were discussing the craft, he was showing me the gangster and I asked him, “Do gangsters need Jesus too?” He looked at me, slightly perplexed, and said, “Yes.” Throughout the night, he kept emphasizing that Jesus is the safe place for gangsters too. Although a small thing, it made me really happy that this guy, who really wants to be a gangster, also recognizes that everyone needs Jesus.

Last night (Monday), we had a special meal with the rising 6th graders who are leaving Children’s Ministry and going into the Youth Group. While I was happy to see them maturing and taking a greater leadership role, I was also kind of sad that they won’t be in my group anymore on Tuesday nights. They are a good crop of kids and I’m proud of them.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Last night, I had the privilege, honor, and delight to participate in a baptism service in the Longhouse. It was the most amazing night of the year! We had 8 adults, 5 youth, and 6 children baptized. Of the 6 children, 5 are regularly involved with children’s ministry. I’m still beaming about the night.

I’ve never seen so many smiling faces, and I felt a sense of joy, happiness, and love like I’ve never before felt at Bible Study. The kids were behaved, everyone paid attention, and God’s love was proclaimed and demonstrated. You can see video by clicking here.

The teams arrive on Saturday and the intern training time was gone very well!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Warm Springs Rez

The interns arrive today which means summer begins and it’s going to be a busy/wonderful 11 weeks. Last week, I got to go to the Warm Springs Reservation, met our contact person Don, and see the place where we do Kid’s Club. It was a great visit and encouraging seeing what’s happening down there. The one thing that really stuck with me was when we were talking with Don, he was really excited about Kid’s Club. He pointed out that there were 50 deaths last year and they are on pace to exceed that this year. Warm Springs is small place with about 3,000 people. Because there are so many deaths, it can be a very dark place, especially for the kids. Don said He liked that Kid’s Club provides a time where the kids can just be kids, they get a chance to just have fun and for a time leave behind the deaths and funerals that are too common.

When Don said that, it made me happy to be part of that moment of light and joy for the kids. It also reminded me of Adventures in Odyssey, a radio program I used to listen to as a kid, and the opening monologue where Mr. Whittaker said that Whit’s End was a place where “most of all, it is a place where kids of all ages can just be kids.” While what we do is no Whit’s End and I’m no Mr. Whittaker, it made happy to think that in a small way, we’re helping the kids to be kids and brighten their lives.

Monday, May 9, 2011

One Year

Well, today marks 1 Year since I moved out here. It feels like yesterday. It does lead me to reflect, remembering the past year and considering the future. Some highlights of the past year:

* Sacred Road got a building and we’ll have services within the year.

* I (for the most part) have got the hang of children’s ministry.

* The Christmas Feast was an amazing event and outreach.

* Seeing growth and change with some of the children.

* It feels more natural being out here

* Seeing God move in big and small ways, both in the community and within me.

I’ll be coming back to Macon on August 12th and will be around through the 23rd. I’d love to catch up with folks and share what the Lord’s been doing.

Thanks for your prayers and encouragement, and I would greatly appreciate your prayers as I think about the future and where God is leading.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

CHIEF Conference

Wendell and I are in Phoenix, AZ at a conference hosted by CHIEF. The conferences has been a big encouragement and we've met lots of great people. The coolest thing is I met a Hopi man who knows my great-great aunt who lives on the Hualapai Reservation. We'll head back to Yakama on Friday.

Last week, we had a team from Covenant and it went really well. The team did a great job of loving on the kids and serving.

This week, we've got a team from Mississippi and another from Alabama.

Next week, there will be a team from UW-RUF, a church from California, and a couple individuals.

Things are pretty busy, but going well. Thanks for your prayers.

Grace and Peace!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


We took the youth bowling on Monday the 21st of February and had a great time! Lots of fun and good memories. You can see pictures by clicking here. (The pictures are on Chuck Clevenger's profile).

We've got a team from Covenant College here this week and they're staying busy. It's going to be a busy couple of weeks with teams back-to-back-to-back. The teams will help with the new church building and repairing homes in White Swan.

We've met with the Tribal Emergency Office and over 200 homes in White Swan have roof damage because of the wind storm that spread the fire. We've already worked on a couple and hope to fix up some more. Clyde from Mission to North America Disaster Relief, is here and helping out and MNA might send some teams out here. Clyde is also rooming with me, so it's nice to have another person out there in the big, lonely house.

Things are going very well, we're super busy, and a bit stretched. Thanks for your prayers!

Grace, Peace, and Thanks to All!

Sunday, February 20, 2011


4 Guys from Zillah, Chuck, 3 youth, and I patched 4 roofs Saturday that had shingles ripped off in the wind storm. The damage was kind of small, and it went well. Most of the houses in White Swan that had roof damage have temporary tarps, so they will be ok for when it rains.

This past week was pretty good even though we had to move Bible Study to Harrah b/c of a funeral, but still had about 40 people attend – despite not picking up people.

Starting this Saturday, I’ll have a temporary roommate – a guy named Clyde from Mission to North America will be staying with me at the church/house. He’ll be helping us out with some of the wind/fire damage in White Swan.

Busy times, but things are good.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

White Swan Fire

Chris and I drove around White Swan and visited people this morning/afternoon. I made a map that shows which areas were damaged. Most of the town and Totus Park were spared. The fire fortunately missed the Cougar Den with their above ground propane tanks. Eighteen houses burned down, of which seventeen were occupied. The town has water and parts have electricity. The parts that don't have power should have power by this evening. Everyone can get back into town except for the Coburn Loop neighborhood which has lots of downed power lines.

Click Here to see the map.

The fire spread quickly because of the high winds: winds from 50-60 miles an hour with gusts up to 70. The wind also tore shingles and tar paper off of lots of buildings. Probably half of the houses around White Swan have roof damage. Some were missing half the shingles.

Chris and I spoke with one lady who told us she saw the fire heading straight to her house. She started praying in Jesus' name and as she prayed the wind changed direction and the fire turned northeast and missed her house. She was crying and very encouraging to us.

The immediate needs in the community are not as severe as we had feared, but lots of homes need roofing and there's also a need for homes. Chris is in talks with the Tribal Emergency Group and with Mission to North America about what work needs to be done and what needs we can meet.

Thankfully, most of the town was spared and we have heard of no major injuries or fatalities. Thanks for your prayers. If you'd like to make a donation to help those displaced by the fire/wind, send a tax-deductible donation marked "Mercy Ministry" to:

Sacred Road Ministries
22116 SE 51st Place
Issaquah, WA 98029.

In other news, I'm sending out an update tomorrow. Things are going well and lots is happening. Grace, Peace, and Rest to You!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Good News

On Thursday, the Board approved the purchase of the house!! We're really excited and it's 99% sure we'll get the house. The closing date was Jan. 27 but the bank hasn't got their stuff together so they pushed the date back to Feb. 28, so it won't be "official" until the closing, so I suppose something could happen, but very unlikely. Chris Granberry has been talking with a contractor and getting the zoning issues hammered out and that part of the equation looks really good.

This past Tuesday, we had to cancel Bible Study because there was a funeral, but we wound up getting all the youth together and had a great night with them eating pizza and playing games. I was really encouraged to see the youth having fun together and sharing their hearts in prayers.

D-Group this week was a little crazy and hectic. Keep Brandon, Charles, & Davy in your prayers. Some weeks are really good, some less so.

Poo'ko cut his hip on barbed wire and got stitches and a cone of shame, so he's outside until he can maneuver without running into everything. He's ok, because he has a heat lamp and is fenced in so he can't run away.

We went to another basketball game and the guys won by 40 and the girls by 14. They're incredibly athletic and fast.

I also found out Uncle Dave is coming for 2 weeks in the spring and will be back this summer. Super like!

No more news. Grace and Peace to all

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Here's a picture of my dog. His name is Poo'ko (Hopi for Dog). He's a blue Doberman and he's neurotic, emotionally needy, and hates cows, birds, and the rabbit that lives nearby. He will be your eternal friend if you pet him. As friendly as he is/seems, he has bitten one person, so caution is advised.

This is the house that would be a church. The board votes this Thursday, the 20th on whether or not to buy the house and turn it into a Church. There's a great view of the valley, and on a clear day, you can see White Swan, Harrah, Wapato, & Toppenish. I'm staying out here and keeping an eye on things. So far so good.
Here's a closeup. The cool part of this picture is the Gap to the left of the house and the clouds coming through on the other side of the ridge. The Gap in the Ridge is about 16 miles away. It rained yesterday and was super foggy last night, and this morning the clouds left this side of the ridge but were still on the other side this morning.

We had to cancel Bible Study this week because of snow, but it warmed up and feels like spring. Because of the snow melt, the driveway turned super muddy and I was nearly stuck. It's dried out some and improved a bit. I've been spending a lot of time this week looking up grants for Sacred Road.

On Friday, Chuck and I went to my first White Swan Basketball game. They were amazing! They beat the Waterville Boys 75-15 and the Girls 71-15. Both teams are #1 in their divisions and looked really good. The Girls are ranked #4 and the Guys are undefeated and #1. Basketball is really big on the Rez, and there are high hopes for the playoffs this year.

Grace and Peace to All!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Back in the Swing of Things

Pictures from the Past Month:

Dining Room at the Christmas Feast
(the other room, the Ceremonial Room, had an additional 300 people)

The Youth Group Decorating Crew

Fun Times

Hanging the Paper Chain

Chains, Chains, and more Chains

Brandon & Charles
(I have no idea what they're doing)

We started back with Bible Study this Tuesday and we had a smaller crowd and it went really well. We wound up watching the video from the Christmas Feast and everyone enjoyed it. It's comparable to watching home videos, which is a lot of fun to do as a big group. The kids really enjoyed laughing at funny photos, seeing themselves and others, and were really well behaved during the video, which was a huge blessing and surprise.

On Wednesday, Chuck, Steven, Al, and I helped a single woman and her two kids move. It was a real blessing to help her move the things that are too heavy for her and the kids. We also had fun with the kids playing marbles and goofing off. :)

Yesterday, I took the D-Group to Pizza Hut and we looked at the first chapter of Psalms from the Message. I don't know how much they got from it, but over the next weeks I hope it'll become a part of our routine and they enjoy it.

Lately, I've been researching grants to help bolster Sacred Road's funding for Children & Youth Ministry. It can be a bit time consuming and tedious, but the results will be great.

It's really cold here and it doesn't look like it'll let up till March (maybe February). After Sunday, it's not supposed to get above freezing for the rest of the week. BRRRRRRR

Grace and Peace To You