How we’ve spent our time in Alaska….
Saturday, May 26
7am – pull out from Bear Track Bible Church
Sunday, May 27 (Alaska time: EST minus 4 hrs)
4am – arrive at Alaska Christian College
9:30am – head to church
After church – eat lunch and head to Homer
8:30pm – arrive back at ACC and get a tour
Monday – Friday (7am – 6pm)
7am – Eat breakfast
7:30am – Group devotional
8am – Start work
Noon – lunch/speaker
1pm – work
5pm – clean up
5:30 – dinner
Monday – ACC President, Keith Hamilton’s house for dessert and ACC history
Tuesday – Visit Jane Faulkner and her sledding dogs
Wednesday - Grilled Salmon at the Hoffbeck’s
Thursday – Hike in Sterling
Friday – Bonfire
Saturday, June 2
A few good men – fishing trip/clean up
Everyone else - clean up/Soldotna then on to Seward
10pm – everyone arrive at the airport in Anchorage
Sunday, June 3
1:43am – leave Alaska
7:30pm (EST) – Arrive at Cinci airport
~ 11:00pm – Arrive back at Bear Track Bible Church
Monday June 4
Today is our last work day here at ACC. It has come to feel like home and it will be strange not getting up and heading to the cafeteria for breakfast with everyone. The roofing project will wrap up shortly, painting is still going on, windows are cleaned, ladies are still sewing in the library, vans are being cleaned, baseboards washed, and furniture moved.
Yesterday several were able to decoreate luminaria for the Relay for Life up here. We will have to bring the decorating tradition to Lee County next year.
Harvey, the maintenance man is back, and we’re waiting to see if he can tell elves have been in his workshop organizing and sorting. :)
Last night some of us took a hike up a trail .8 miles and were blessed to see God’s handywork. We were in awe of how He dazzles us through creation. Thanks, Ron and Shannon, for taking us out.
Tonight we have a bonfire on the beach scheduled. Tomorrow the men will head out early for a fishing expedition and the ladies will take in some sights and shops before heading to the airport. Our trip back will be about 22.5 hours.
Please keep us in prayer for safety while traveling, bringing our fire back to light others, and action to the challenges we were given during devotions this week. God is AWESOME and our cups overflow from this experience. We cannot thank our supporters enough.
Good evening to the lower 48. :) We are still working during the day, enjoying Alaska at night, and learning so so much.
Keith Hamilton, president of ACC, hosted us Monday evening for dessert. He relayed the story of how ACC came to be. It was all God and one miracle after another. He showed us a video with student testimonies and although we were warm and cozy in the room, many had chill bumps. The students turn their lives around with the help of the college and the counseling center run by Keith’s wife and other licensed counselors. The students come in with a 6th – 8th grade reading level and from villages of about 400. ACC helps them acclimate to more people, college life, and the christian life. The students glow when sharing their stories.
Tuesday night we went to see Jane Faulkner, who competed in the 2010 Iditarod (photos in the gallery). She suffered from frostbite on one hand and infections from burst blisters on the other. Another woman was with her who had broken her face and had frostbite on one hand. Together the women helped each other keep their sleds going and actually finished the race. Amazing! This relates to the message the pastor gave Sunday about running the race for Christ. We have to keep at it and not stop.
Tonight Sean and Shannon Hoffbeck, our hosts, had us over for dinner. YUM! They cooked up salmon, rice, and veggies. Their home was so welcoming, we felt right at home. Their dogs were more than happy to have new pals to throw the frisbee for them. :) THANK YOU, guys!
The crew on the roof is still going at it. Ray said yesterday there are 2 bones in his body that don’t hurt. The younger guys have gotten alot of praise for learning and working hard.
We finished organizing the ‘tool shed’, about 35 x 80 building. Yes, the ladies did this with Shelia to answer many times “What’s this?” Lots of rooms are being painted, baseboards cleaned, carpets cleaned, the chapel gotten into shape, the deck primed, and kusbucks being sewn. On Friday, we will watch as Jacquie crosses off all the projects we have completed to see the impact of this week.
At lunch today, the librarian Mary, gave her testimony and how she came to ACC. She grew up believing God was angry and that we had to go through rituals in order to appease him. In her 30s, she found Jesus. We also got to see more native jewelry (yes, we got to purchase!), booties, and such. Otters are incredibly soft and seals are much more furry than we thought.
Ron, on loan to the college for 2 1/2 years from Michigan, commented what a fun group we are and what a difference that makes for a team coming to work here. The time in fundraising and team meetings really paid off to pull us together.
God is changing hearts here this week and providing unique experiences for each of us to draw closer to Him. Thank you for your prayers, God is answering them in such big ways!
Alaska is absolutely incredible! We traveled for 25 hours and arrived early Sunday morning. After catching a few hours of sleep, we were up and off to church. It was a revitalizing service, and the perfect kick-off to our stay.
Sunday was our ‘play’ day and our hosts, Sean and Shannon, took us to Homer. Along the way we saw plenty of moose (will try to post video of mama and her brand new twins) and breathtaking views of the snow-capped mountains. Some saw the otters on the beach, other saw fresh Halibut, and everyone looked through the local shops on The Spit.
Today one crew started on the roofing project, taking the shingles off, putting down the paper, and reshingling one main section. They did a great job and got alot accomplished. The other group dismantled the winter ice rink outside, weeded the walking path (was no small job), weeded/replanted/sanded/painted very large flower boxes out back of the main building. There will be visitors coming and since we are the first group, we are trying to spruce up the outside and make it more welcoming, getting rid of any sign of winter. A back deck to the duplex was power-washed and sanded, ready for painting tomorrow.
Tonight we will have dessert at the president’s house a short drive away. At lunch Sean shared a video with us he made about the students and told us more about them, where they come from, their time as students, and where they go after ACC. Jacquie shared with us last night and our hearts are very much with the students of this college and the ministry to them.
Erica is a student who flew back in last night and will be working with the groups this summer. She is a very sweet girl who puts God first in front of everything…just as it should be. :) We are very lucky to get to know her on a personal level.
We will try to get pictures and videos posted here soon in the Gallery.
God is revealing himself to us and blessing us hourly it seems. Thank you, Lord for this journey, amen.
We are sooooo excited to leave this Saturday. VBS last week really gave us a boost as the team spent 4 nights with the kids teaching them about God’s promises and getting to have fun with them. God blessed us greatly. (Check out the gallery for pictures).
Since our last post we had our Bowling Tournament, Silent Auction and Dish Toss, and the Car Wash/Yard Sale. The fund raisers have been instrumental in bringing our team together to work as one. This past Wednesday night, the 1st – 6th graders were able to be apart of the trip by writing messages to the students of Alaska Christian College on the backs of bookmarks with verses on the front. Their hearts are so open and loving it’s incredible.
Please continue to pray for our trip – for safety, spiritual growth, enthusiasm in our work. We have no doubt God has amazing things to reveal to each of us.
We hope to update the Gallery and mission trip pages while in Alaska, so check often and we’ll see you when we return!
The Alaska mission team would like to thank everyone who has supported us in preparing for this trip – through prayer, donations, time, ideas, planning, or a thoughtful word.
We ask that you continue to pray for us over the next weeks and through our trip. We specifically ask for safety, God-centered hearts, spiritual growth, personal growth, and all the blessings God has in store for us and the college. We also want to come back completely on fire for God and ignite those around us!
We will hopefully be posting pictures of the trip in the gallery while we are gone so check back to see our journey…
Don’t forget this Saturday, April 7th, is the chili supper and singing at Living Waters Sanctuary in Berea, Ky. The fun starts at 7pm. 113 Liberty Road, Berea.