May has been a month of many “firsts” for me. I participated as an active leader at a week long English camp (led by Keifer and Karna) for the first time, taught my first Bible story at the Rock Solid Club, and… I discovered my new favorite pizza — Hawaiian with french fries! I really don’t know how we managed to stumble on this ridiculously delicious dish, but I’m certainly glad we did.
Rock Solid Club
May was a busy month for our Rock Solid Club leaders, particularly for my roommate, Zuzka, who spent the whole month studying for the final exams for her Bachelor’s degree. (She passed the test on Monday with flying colors. Congrats, Zuzka! 😀 ) It was also a busy month for the kids, as several of them were taking tests and preparing to move on to high school. To help fill the gaps left by everyone’s schedule, Keifer and I each took a turn to teach at club.
I have to admit it — I’ve always loved telling Bible stories. Sure, I still get nervous beforehand, but once I’ve started talking it’s hard to stop. While praying about which story to tell, I felt the Lord directing me to John 3 and Nicodemus. Nicodemus was a quiet man who wanted answers. He came to Jesus at night after all the crowds had gone home, and together they discussed where Nicodemus’ head-knowledge about God failed, and where his heart-knowledge needed to begin. While many Czech people have heard of God, or have some head-knowledge about the Bible, it takes time for that knowledge to really penetrate their hearts. Nicodemus became an example of head-to-heart when he helped take Jesus’ body down from the cross (John 19:39-40). This quiet man became an ardent, unashamed follower of Christ, and as I was teaching this story I realized that is my hope for the Czech people as well.
English Club – Zubři
We have a great bunch of kids involved in the Zubři English Club. I love spending time with them and seeing what they’ll do next. We started May off with an exercise that involved the kids creating pretend Facebook profiles on paper to practice writing about their lives, likes, dislikes, hobbies, families, etc. We thought the exercise would take them maybe 20 minutes. Instead, the kids got so involved that they used the whole class period for it. Some of them even took their profiles as homework and turned in the completed sheet the following week. Their hard work, and the quality of their artwork, was super impressive. It was a disappointment to me to be sick during the last class of the month and have to skip it. (Though I definitely preferred skipping to giving someone else my cold. It was a nasty one!)
Business English Camp
The week of May 13 – 19 we spent in Malenovice at Business English Camp. I’ve participated in two small weekend camps before and done small jobs, but this was the first time I’d ever actually taken an active role in preparing and leading a camp. We based the camp around the Game of Life. Each day involved different life challenges, like caring for a child, building a house, getting a job, keeping to a budget, and thinking through life goals. I spent the week before the camp helping to prepare the craft supplies, and spent the week of the camp organizing, prepping, and cleaning up those same supplies. Since I love working with crafts, I didn’t mind it in the least.
In honor of the Game of Life, I built a working Life Wheel for the students to spin each day. The Life Wheel determined each team’s salary, where to built their homes, and the amount of chocolate egg children they had — two sets of triplets, and two adoptions! There was only one chance in ten for triplets, and you should have heard the prospective parents groan when “triplets” was spun twice. They took pretty good care of them, though. Only one triplet ended up with a sizable dent in its chocolate forehead and became the subject of a court battle (in which I was an important witness). The parents were fined and all ended well, and at the end of camp the egg children were messily devoured. (Here are some pictures of the egg children in all their glory. The one in purple was made by my group and named after me.)
As much as I loved doing crafts, I loved being with the students more. I really enjoyed connecting with the teens in my small group as we practiced our English, participated in the challenges, and discussed everything from politics to air sickness to God’s involvement in our lives. Please continue to pray for the young people that attended the camp, that they would continue to learn and grow and that God would bless their lives.
June comes with a bit of a change. This Saturday, June 3, Keifer and I will be flying to Ireland to apply for my long-term visa. The process has been long and challenging so far, but it has been exciting to see God at work. I couldn’t have come this far without Keifer’s help, and without the help and prayers of my Czech and American friends and family. I have an amazing support group!
While we’re in Ireland, Keifer and I are hoping to help with the Irish branch of Youth for Christ. Keifer will be flying home after a week, and I’ll be returning to the Czech Republic on June 21 in time for Zuzka’s wedding. The day after the wedding, it’s off to Bulgaria to participate in a camp hosted by Josiah Venture. What a lot of traveling! But I’m excited to get some experience working with new ministries and experiencing different cultures while I wait for my long-term visa to come in. Please be in prayer for Keifer and I as we travel. Pray for fruitful ministry for us, and for a speedy and safe visa process.
Thanks everyone! Until next time!