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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Joy’s Mid-Year Review

We are six months into 2014 and I always enjoy looking back….I think it’s a sweet trip down memory lane, a time to reflect on how thing have changed and a good reminder that hardly anything ever remains the same.  These last six months have been trying, but before I go pulling the “hardest time of my life” card, I need to reflect even further back and remember that I tend to suffer from short term memory, and forget all that was before and focus instead on “what good have you done for me lately?” type logic.  But for the purpose of this note, I will try to focus in solely on the last six months.

January- I was able to start off my year in Maine after spending Christmas vacation with a number of friends.  Maine really is a second home to me and I am thankful to live close enough to drive these days.  School resumed.

February- A complicated month.  I finally got keys to my very own and very first apartment which was exciting but it also meant leaving the house of a near and dear family that was walking through the journey of cancer.  She has surgery the day before I moved out.  I remember having so many vivid conversations with God questioning His timing….I finally got what I had been praying for so long but it meant leaving a family I loved at a hard time.

March- This month can almost be divided straight in half. 

The first half had many crazy busy but fun upsides.  My Student Leaders group was in charge of coordinating the Spirit Days at school and that went remarkably well.  This included a Staff/Parents vs. Student basketball game and a mess of school-wide games on Friday afternoon.  A highlight was on Friday, classes were challenged to come up with a cheer or song and the high schoolers came up with one dedicated to our school’s Director.  The students got a kick out of it but I know Adam, the director was equally blessed.

The second half started abruptly after this.  On Saturday morning, March 15, a tragic accident happened involving Adam and a tree branch occurred.  The rest of this month was spent praying for miracles and pulling together a community that had never been as united.

April-More praying and more uniting of the Christian and school community.  Towards the end of the month, Sidewalk Prophets came to town with City Harbor and About a Mile in a concert to benefit the school.   All three of the bands were aware of Adam’s accident and made mention of him personally and even did a sweet video and signed autographs for him.  God’s people brought together again.

May-A train wreck of a month with so much going on.  My last living grandparent passed away at the beginning of the month.  Mother’s Day is always a mixed bag of feeling blessed and feeling depressed.  My birthday was mixed in there but my birthday feels no longer like a big deal.  School was in wrap up and cover as much as you can mode.  Teacher and students are certainly on two different planes at this point…teachers are in a rush to cover as much as possible and push to the end….students are on a downward spiral of “are we done yet?”  Almost there…

June- School concluded with a splendid graduation ceremony celebrating our six graduate’s accomplishments.  I had some time to breathe before my last great adventure of this half year.
For the 6th time, I was able to join in on the ministry of CEF® and attend their Christian Youth in Action® training school.  This year was especially fun in the crew of old friends brought back together for these ten days.  It was fun to reconnect and serve alongside one another.  Unfortunately, while physically present there, I was blessed but very tired.  I was pretty moody, I’d say and I am sure those who were there would probably agree.  I loved being there but I was on the fringes of burn out so I am glad I was able to return home after and reflect.  As I look back on CYIA, I am actually stoked I was able to be a part of it and see all God did in those ten days in the lives of the teens, the staff, and the many people we were privileged to share with through the time be it during open air, literature distribution, or 4 Day Clubs. 

As an update, Adam is currently at a rehab hospital and making gains there, slowly but surely.  God has used this accident in such tremendous ways and I can only account on the things I have personally seen and heard…I can only imagine the greater impact that God is using this with that I don’t even know about. 

As a further side note, I started running/walking back in November after being challenged by a friend, and I have somewhat continued that journey this year, with June (over 40) being the most consistent month for sure.  But in the first six months, I have ran and/or walked over 78 miles….I realize I have friends that have ran over that in a 24 hour period, but for me, baby steps are still fun to celebrate. 

So in short-ish, those are my first six months.  It’ll be interesting to see what lies ahead in the year 2014.  What are the high/low lights of the last six months for you?

Until next time,
In Christ,


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