One thing is vivid in my mind as I try to summarize this fall - It is hard to keep up with the Lord. His ways are higher than mine and his capacity is measureless!
He is generously pouring out opportunities to watch him at work and join him as his purposes unfold. So as I work to prioritize projects and connect with people, I am aware that I am desperately in need of his wisdom and that I cannot keep pace with him on my own.
In October the online course through Hope International University was completed by the first group of students. God blessed our efforts and we learned that our work to create a course that was relational, interactive, formational and had incremental application was a success. Now we are in the process of discussing how to use what we learned in future projects with HIU. This work will influence our future educational projects with Kampala Evangelical School of Theology in Uganda as well.
Late in October and early November I was part of a KidZ team to El Salvador which presented the Great Trainer Summit. Seeing these gifted trainers prepare to teach other children's workers was a delight!
My teammate and I also taught a workshop at the Evangelical University, met with pastors and children's ministry leaders from large churches in San Salvador, as well as some Christian University leaders from Guatemala. God gave us an amazing opportunity to speak at a pastor's breakfast which opened the door to conversations about future work in Panama.
One great highlight was the retreat day with the 20-member El Salvadoran training team held high on an extinct volcano. They graciously tell me that my Spanish is really more accurately called "Salvadoran Charades" because I rely on hand gestures and facial expressions when I don't have the right words.
Check out more pictures at the end of this post.
And we have projects in other parts of the world:
God used the KidZ Thailand team to bring us an opportunity to partner with a school in Chiang Mai, Thailand which is requesting that we train their teachers and help them establish a training center. What a delight to work as the liaison for KidZ in these initial conversations to establish a Memo of Understanding and set a plan in place to equip teachers, parents and leaders to give spiritual nurture to children in Thailand!
At the same time, we are giving attention to requests for the training modules and workshops in North America. We are increasingly aware of the need to prepare to serve the subcultures close at hand: urban communities, Native Americans, and immigrant people groups. I'll be traveling to Kentucky in January to help launch a new training network for North American Ministries department.
In November, I was asked to take additional responsibility by assuming the role of Vice President of Training Resources. This means that I have increased my commitment to KidZ at Heart to full time work hours and that I oversee additional areas such as budget and those volunteers and staff who are responsible for both the content development and the content administration. I am inexpressibly grateful that the former Vice President of Content Development is continuing to work in this department with me on the administration side of the work. Her insight and expertise is immeasurably valuable.
Yes, it is hard to keep up with him, but we will seek him and follow hard after him as he continues to bring us opportunities to help children fall deeply in love with Jesus!
Pictures from El Salvador