Love In Action … Day 2

It was a cold start this morning. We were all bundled up (thankfully I brought extra beanies and the church had extra gloves).  I don’t think some of them didn’t believe me that it would be colder than walking from building to building.  They believe me now!  😀


Our first work project was Rob.  He and his wife had recently purchased a really nice double wide modular home. His yard was full of roofing nails, pieces of shingles, trash and the destroyed flower bed borders and garden mesh.  He is recovering from tongue cancer and our prayer time for him at the end was so sweet.  He kept asking us to have our lunchtime with him, so we did.

We headed to work project #2 but it was no longer there.  The house had been condemned and a bulldozer had cleared the lot.  On to project #3.

Larry had just finished a fixer upper and Harvey hit.  The yard was covered with debris of all kinds.  Larry was limited on what he could do because he had previously had heart surgery.  Our kids rocked it.  2 acres of shingles, wood pieces, trash, limbs, toys, tin, etc.

We logged in 6 hours today.

The track and golf team got their run in.  Dinner is almost done.

I’m pausing and then I’ll come back and write in debrief time!

The evening:

Tonight we each reread Romans 12 and chose the verses that spoke to us individually.  We each shared our verse or verses and why we chose them.  We also each shared the moments during the day that impacted us.

There were many recurring themes.

The overwhelming loss that people have suffered.

It is sobering to know many people lost many personal items yet in their yards were the personal items that someone else had lost.

Even with loss, Larry was so happy we were there to help.  The more we did, the more his shoulders lifted.

To be able to pray with each man was such a blessing. Rob was so blessed we were there with him. Prayer meant so much to him.

After we prayed for Larry he said, “Wow, thank you. I feel lifted up right now.  I just feel better.  Thank you so much”

We finished ahead of schedule, so asking for new projects.

Till tomorrow!

The pictures above

Left -The Back of Larry’s house is no longer there

Middle – Notes left around our living area from people of Rockport

Right – Side view of Larry’s house





Categories: Impact Trips! | 1 Comment

Love in Action

We arrived at Coastal Oaks Church at 6:30 pm. The roads were clear. The kids were great travelers.

The damage done here in Rockport is intense.  We could barely see as we drove into town. I know tomorrow will be eye opening for all of us.  We have 4 work projects.  Three of them are clearing debris from people’s yards (they are very excited for us to help)  the other is to help paint here at the church.  Coastal Oaks received a lot of damage. They are changing out children’s Sunday Shool rooms to house the incoming teams so the end of the building where we are now (we are at the other end) can be fixed.  The wind tore off the outside siding at the end of the building.

The whole chapter of Romans 12 will be our focus.

We’re ready to serve!  What this church is doing for their community when they have so much they need done themselves is nothing short of amazing.  It’s a reflection of their relationship with Christ.  Truly they set the example of putting others before themselves.

Romans 12:10-13   Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.  Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need.  Practice hospitality.

Tomorrow we start.  Thank you for allowing your student to come and serve.  I’ll check back in tomorrow night.


Mrs. G

Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Be Aware so you can Be The Light

The team scriptures

The guys –  1 Thessalonians 5:11, Matthew 5:16, Galatians 6:2,

The girls – Hebrews 10:24, Proverbs 16:24


We began the day with a wonderful breakfast prepared by the chef (and I really mean chef) We heard that he makes the best cinnamon rolls and we told him we didn’t know that when we set up our meal plan.  He told he had all the stuff and would be glad to change our menu … sooooo…. Looking forward to trying them out in the a.m.

As we prepared to start the day each team – guys and gals – met and talked about their focus scriptures for the next 2 days.  Inward and outward.

We wrapped quite a few presents for Meals on Wheels and it is always is such a blessing to them.  The M.O.W. team already has enough to do with preparing and delivering and then cleaning up, to add wrapping well over 100 presents is a little daunting.  The cook told me, “You don’t know what a blessing this is. We look forward to your kids coming and helping us every year.”

M.O.W. packed us a lunch so we enjoyed lunch at Johnson Park then divided up and began conquering our Christmas Conspiracy Project.

Let’s just say … THEY WERE PUMPED!  I love it when our students make themselves available to God, and get to become ‘the answer to someone’s prayer’.

What each did was great.  2 new ideas!  I love that.  Not sharing until they come home and can tell you themselves.

After dinner (homemade lasagna… can we say we are NOT eating camp food! This was not Stouffer’s folks)

We gathered and talked again about our scriptures and then I gave instructions about our prayer walking the ‘Walk of Lights’ in Johnson Park by the water… sooooo beautiful!  Filled with scenes from the nativity and at the end….  An empty cross.  The Savior has risen!

We all walked through once and enjoyed the lights… then took our time walking through again asking the Holy Spirit to show us who to pray for and what to pray!  We met up at the end and shared just one thing we prayed for.  It was very encouraging as many prayed for the same thing.

One group still has to finish their project in the morning. Our ministry in the morning is a rehab/nursing home.  We’ll be doing either crafts, Christmas carols or Bingo!  If we are lucky … all three!  😀

It has been a blessing to be with your students these past couple of days.

A BIG Thank you to my leaders:  Amy Smith, Liz Swanson, Jack Shackelford and student leader Blake Wilson.

Your students have been challenged to ‘represent’ in every situation.  They have stepped up to the challenge.  While they are all getting their Starbucks and I am sitting here writing, I am looking at all the people that are amazed at this group of 7th graders that are quiet, respectful and enjoying each other’s company … meantime, the face they made when we walked in … is no longer there.

This morning while wrapping the presents, an elderly lady was decorating the small tree in the center.  She told Mrs. Smith and I. “I am so impressed with these young people.  What grade are they in?”  “7th”  “The seventh grade?  And they are behaving like this? They have quite the decorum. I do not think I have ever seen anything like it!”

We have fun but we are respectful and aware …. of EVERYONE around us. THEN, others notice, and want to know … Why?  How?  Who are you?

THEN … we can say who we are … and why we are doing what we are doing … and WHO we know…  Jesus … His story … our story … becomes ‘the story’ !  Fun huh?

It’s the BEST EVER! ! ! !

See you tomorrow afternoon around 2:30ish!

Mrs. g



Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Blessed to be a Blessing

When His Story becomes a part of our story – Blessings are going to happen!

We got to the city of Burnet in perfect timing. We were close to the front of the line which was great because by the time they opened the gates, the line had wrapped around 4 blocks!

Main Street Bethlehem is celebrating 25 years of sharing the story of God’s great love toward us in that he sent his son Jesus to the world! What a love story that can become a part of each of our own life stories.

We had dinner and then headed to our cabins, unloaded the trailer and found our beds for the next 2 evenings.


We ended our evening with a bonfire and talked about this opportunity that each of us were going to have these next 2 days to maybe share the story or BE the story to someone else.

We spent time in prayer:

  • Praising and thanking God for His son Jesus
  • Asking God to help each one of us to glorify Him through our actions to one another
  • Praying for our time with Meals on Wheels in the morning – to be a blessing
  • Praying for our Conspiracy Project tomorrow – we are asking God to give each team creative ideas on ways to bless others without them knowing – may we be the answer to someone else’s prayers
  • May everything we do bring glory and honor to God


Tomorrow morning we will be heading to Meals on Wheels.  We help them sort, wrap and tag all the Christmas presents for the clients that receive daily meals.  It will be very eye opening for our students.

Each person/client will get 2 presents. Ex: 1 pair of gloves & 1 pair of socks, 1 bottle of shampoo and 1 toothbrush and toothpaste.

We will be praying over the gifts that each person receives exactly what they have need of.

When we’ll be eating a meal with the cooks and drivers and sometimes clients/people that come to the center to eat.

After lunch we will begin our conspiracy project.  Which is really a truth project.  We will be figuring out ways to bless others.  This is soooo much fun and the testimonies that come out of this each year are very touching.  It is also a way for your student to grow in their faith. When we pray and ask God to help us and then we see that we are able to hear his heart for others and the blessing we can be, it is so encouraging for each one of us on this trip.

After dinner we will head to the trail of lights where we will do a little prayer walking and then Starbucks and then back here for our debriefing.


Have a blessed day!  Ask God to give you divine appointments during your day.  Share His story.  Be His story. We are blessed to be a blessing and this Christmas season is filled with all kinds of opportunities to be his eyes, his hands, his heart to others.


Mrs. G



Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Working Together = Success Achieved

It’s been another amazing day of YOUR amazing children doing AMAZING teamwork!

Your kiddos were complimented from morning till evening!  Most of the time they didn’t know it, but we shared with them each time we got the chance just to encourage them and to spur them on to the finish line!

An elderly gentleman that comes to Tejas to serve and help build the ‘nativity walk’ sets came over to me at lunch and said, “I have been working with a Tejas employee for the past two days.  He really bragged on your students. He said of all the teams that come here to serve, your team is their favorite. Your students work hard, they are respectful, they stay focused and get the job done. And they get the job done right. No one has to come behind them and redo it. I just wanted to let you know.  That your kids make a good impression. It’s obvious they are taught how to serve.”

Wow!  I know the guy he was working with.  We hardly ever work with that guy because of the nature of his job at the camp. But at their team meetings they share with each other.

Our team leaders are as impressed as I am. Our kids have taken on every job and done it … with excellence.

Half of our day we spent re-doing work others had done before us.  Unwrapping trees, and then rewrapping them correctly.  It’s tedious but our kids got the vision of ‘let’s do this with excellence to help make the name of Jesus known and glorified’.

Tonight after dinner we stood in the light tunnel and prayed for everyone that comes this year. We then met in our meeting room and refocused on our first evening’s devotional and then headed out with our jackets and flashlights to the ‘Meadows Campfire’.  It’s the most amazing grove of trees that look like they came out of a movie. There’s a fire in the middle – lanterns on posts under the large canopy of trees – tables and benches.  Mr. Linam told the story of the shepherds and their response to the news of the Savior and how we can parallel our lives to them … if we choose, our response to the story of the nativity can be just like theirs.   We each took time to reflect and wrote our thoughts and what we desired in our hearts, on to our devotional papers.  Each student then took their papers and we tossed them in to the fire.  (The first night the kids wrote their feelings, we asked them to be truthful and we promised no one would read them … ever… and tonight we made sure) Those thoughts, fears, dreams  and desires are between them and God.

We then had a great time having s’mores and laughing!  And then the fun walk back!

The boys have (snuck) over to the basketball court and the girls are dancing around and singing Christmas Carols in our cabin.

Tomorrow morning we’ll see what Tejas has for us to do.  At this point, most of the students are saying they would like to stay here and not come back yet. That’s how you want to end a trip, with your kiddos wanting more!

Your students are a treasure and we are so proud of them and have had a BLAST with them!

We’ll see you tomorrow at the end of the school day!


Mrs. G



Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Every Encounter with Him – Requires a Decision

We had a very productive day.  Two of Camp Tejas’ ‘light coordinators’ met with us to line out the day.  It was so encouraging to me and challenging to the class to hear them talk about Summit, our relationship with them and how they depend upon us to help them accomplish their task of sharing the gospel with 14,000+ people over the Christmas Holiday.

This 8th grade class did not disappoint!  They worked so hard and their precise work was so impressive, Tejas decided to change the light design on the tunnel.  We don’t have to do two layers.  One will be sufficient. That probably doesn’t mean a lot to you… but to us… WOOHOO! ! ! !

Mr. Dare joined us for our afternoon light wrapping of the trees around the lake, dinner and then he shared in our evening devotional. He talked about the different phases of a relationship with Christ that the people in the room could be in.

  1. Truly love God and want to pursue a deeper understanding and relationship with Him
  2. Believe God is real but don’t really have a relationship … interested
  3. Not sure what I believe about Him, not sure I even believe in Him

Pray for us as leaders. Tomorrow we will have moments with the students as they work in small groups continuing to hang lights in the tunnel, stuff flamingo’s (truth – but they are plastic) and wrap trees.  This gives us non pressure moments to discuss what’s on the student’s  hearts and questions they have about God.

I know, that in my group today we had a great conversation about God and who he is, what we think about him, etc.   Things we talked about and said were brought up in the evening devotional and Mr. Dare didn’t know we had discussed them.  That’s what God does when we get away from our daily distractions and devote our time and service to God.  We get to encounter Him in a real way, and when we do, we have decisions we make, in our heart, soul and minds.

Thank you for your prayers. Please continue to pray that we each grow closer in our relationship with Christ.

mrs. g

Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Sunday night – Camp Tejas

Sunday night – Camp Tejas

We are off to a great start.  Had a GREAT dinner (too much really) and then free time in the game room and the basketball court.

A trivia Christmas game began our evening devotional.  Since we are here for the Lights of Tejas Christmas Outreach we focus on the story of Christmas and our personal response to every part of ‘HIS’tory!

  • The hope prophesied– Isaiah 9:6- 7  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end.
  •  Our hope – Luke 2:1-20
    • Is our hope in him?
  • The Inn –
    • Where have we said there is no room for Jesus here in this part of my life?
  • The Stable –
    • This is where we come to him – What do we need to bring to him?  What do we need to lay at his feet?
  • Our hearts –
    • Are they fully his?

Our mornings start early and Camp Tejas has been waiting for us. In fact this is a week earlier than we usually come.  Camp Tejas asked if we could come earlier to help them get their lights hung so they can practice all of their light shows, etc.

We thank God for a safe trip here and for the opportunity to serve.

We pray for:

  • Good weather
  • Safety
  • Great attitudes
  • Team work
  • Everyone stay healthy
  • The students to take the devotional time seriously and allow the Holy Spirit to touch their hearts and draw them closer to OUR hope – our Savior – Jesus!


Mrs. G


Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

God Looks At The Heart!

YAY for cloud cover … made working outside a little better this morning.

We started the morning divided into two teams working for the Administration office and Head Start Programs.  Landscaping and clean up!  Our kids work so fast and hard we were done by lunch.

We then were able to bless the local elementary school with half of a trailer of backpacks, school supplies, office supplies, personal supplies and clothing.  From our backpack project we did for Oklahoma 3 years ago, it was confirmed again that the majority of the children at the local elementary school did not have backpacks, and could not afford to get the supplies needed at the beginning of school. The teachers were going to be thrilled to have backpacks to give to their students and supplies to use in the classroom. It is so fun to be able to bless someone, and they not know that it was you.  This time we were given the backpacks, etc. to find someone to bless, and what a blessing it is!

Finishing early gave everyone a 2 hour break to relax and enjoy the cabins and the view.

After practicing for the evening and spending time in prayer, we loaded up and headed to Boswell.


Elementary – The Theme –  David – Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7

High School –  Using the story of David and comparing their own journey with God

The Elementary group was so full of energy and really connected with the children. The worship, memory verse, skit and special prayer time was wonderful.  There were 31 elementary students.   Our kids got to hear funny and heartbreaking things.

The Middle School group had a great time too.  They had icebreaker games, devotional times, worship. And watching our students interact with them and seeing them connect with each other over dinner was really cool.

Have I said how proud of these kids I am?  Truly we were all so grateful God allowed us to end our week this way.

We came back to the cabins for debriefing. We spent time in prayer and gave the evening back to God.

I had the students write down the names of the kids in their small groups and what they could remember about the conversations.  I am praying that they will pray for them and when God brings them to mind (no matter how many times) they will understand that is not a random thought, that is the Holy Spirit nudging them to pray

We worshiped and then each person shared about the evening. Too much to write.  We laughed at the stories and then there were such sobering moments it broke your heart to hear what is going on in the lives of these precious kids. What an honor God trusted us to have such a special time with them tonight.

We’ve had a great time this week and most of the kids wish we could stay another day.  Sooooo… we are heading home.  Our plans are to leave around 8:ish am.  We hope to be back at the campus between 3-4:30p.  We will keep you updated.   The students will begin calling you about an hour out.

Thank you for praying.  Please continue to pray for your student and this trip in particular. Pray for the things God has challenged them with.   I am praying for their hearts to be guarded and that the things they have been challenged … stay with them … drawing them closer to God and the purposes he has for them.

Thank you parents for allowing your students to participate.  A HUGE thank you to my leaders; Ed Wilson, Jake Shackelford, Liz Swanson and Shelby Hollier!

We will see you all tomorrow

Mrs g


Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Man looks on the outside of a person – God looks on the heart!

We finished the property in Kingston in record time. What a transformation. Brady, the job manager told me it he was so grateful for all the hard work the kids did but more than that, it was so refreshing to work with young people that were kind to each other and there wasn’t any foul language.

What a sad testimony of so many young people, but what a wonderful compliment for our kids.  It does always surprise other people when they work a long side of our students.  They took responsibility for their assigned areas and for jobs they were overseeing. They worked hard and didn’t give up until it was completed.

Another department of Little Dixie realized we were here and has asked for us to help them in the morning.

After we finished our day we treated ourselves to Braum’s ice cream ( I’m just sayin’ ).  Then we headed to the ruins of the old Choctaw town of Doaksville.  It has actual ruins of the town; jail, restaurant, 3 wells, hotel and a tavern.  The ruins are stone walls about one to 3 feet high.  One other interesting thing is you have to drive into the local cemetery and then take the stairs over a stone wall, heading down a path to the ruins.

Free time before dinner – nice!

Then devotionals –  We continue the story of David and now he’s facing the giant Goliath.  David is prepared for this moment in his life because of all the things he has gone through while tending sheep.  Saul wanted him to use ‘his armor’ however that is not how he had been trained.  He used the skills that he had developed during his times of being alone, facing dangerous situations guarding the sheep, spending time learning to trust God.  Those are the things he took into the battle that not only saved his own life, but the lives of a whole nation of people.

We challenged the students to take this time in their life and allow God to use it for his glory and to help shape who he has created them to be. Whether what they are going through is exciting or disappointing, it is still a part of their story. They have a choice to let it become a training ground or a distraction or an excuse. We can press into God and allow his character to be formed in us preparing us for what he has in store.

We worshiped together and prayed together. It was a really special time I believe, God is preparing our heart to touch the hearts of the children of Boswell that he loves so dearly. For the little ones, we’re going to focus on what God told Samuel when he was anointing him to be a king one day …

1 Samuel 16:7b   Man looks on the outside of a person, but God looks on the heart.  (ICB International Children’s Bible)  

We live in a world that is constantly competing; against each other, against our time, against our values. It’s all about appearances and how smart, rich, or beautiful we are.   God is looking at our hearts.

These children come from homes where every day is a struggle of some kind. To quote a child from a past year “We’re not very smart, none of us are going to really be anything.”  Well, we believe God has given us a message of hope! Please pray with us.

We talked tonight about how these stories of David can be used to encourage the children and early teens tomorrow night. How we can pray with them and for them.  We broke into our two teams and then practiced our ministry times.

These kids are so talented and I am excited to see what God is going to do tomorrow night.

Please continue to pray for us.  Pray for your student, that God will touch those places of their own heart and mind and soul. Pray that they will desire to trust God with their heart  and with whatever situation they are personally in and allow the creator of the universe to bring encouragement, courage, peace and healing.

What a joy to serve a long side your students.

Mrs. g


Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

“If they keep this up, they’ll work themselves out of a job!”



When we pulled up to the job site this morning, the kids didn’t hesitate; they just jumped out of the vehicles and waited to be told what crew they would work on.  No complaining, just constant working.

It was a construction mess in the house, and broken blinds, etc.  Outside … broken down fencing, a dilapidated small work shed, grass that was to your waist, so the first mowing left piles of grass that had to be removed to get a really good 2nd mowing. The twigs and branches that had to be removed, broken chairs … get the picture?  About an hour into the workday I walked up to Jerry the job site foreman and asked if everything was okay and if the kids were doing okay or if we needed to attend to anything. His reply, “If they keep this up, they’ll work themselves out of a job! These kids are hard working and FAST! ”    uh…. yeah!  They’re Summit kids!  So proud… so proud!

When Terri (area supervisor) brought the pizza for lunch, she was stunned.  She had only been gone an hour and half to run and errand and then get trash bags and pick up lunch.  The place looked nothing like when she had left. “

The city gave us permission to burn the grass and tree limbs which was GREAT so we didn’t have to bag up what would have been over 200 bags of grass – and I do NOT think that is an exaggeration.

THE WORK TEAMS: After taking down the small shed, Mr. Wilson directed the raking and burn pile,  Mr. Shackleford directed the removing of the fence and the posts (going back tomorrow to remove 20 more posts) Both of those leaders working as hard as the kids. Shelby (alumni leader) managed the raking and trash team. Miss Swanson managed the inside cleaning team. I worked on all the teams except the fence and shed removal team. (If you don’t know my propensity for accidents, be proud of that decision) and I was the mama bear staying on top of everyone staying hydrated.

We should finish tomorrow … hopefully early.  They didn’t have another project so I was hoping we could start our day later on Wednesday and then do a couple of random acts of kindness in town and then work on/practice the Wednesday night program for the church in Boswell. However, another department found out we’re here and are begging for our help Wednesday morning.  I’ll find out tomorrow what that entails.

Thank you for your prayers, please continue.  Talking with the leaders during the day I believe there were good cabin devotional times after our evening devo together last night.  What a great opportunity we have, spending time together, talking about our heart’s desires and what we feel God is saying to us.  How does that walk itself out?  How can I stay faithful to my relationship with Jesus?

Good stuff!

TONIGHT’S DEVO TIME continued sharing

Mr Wilson continued sharing his testimony and those times in his life where there was an obstacle in his path to deter him from the path he was on. He shared the decisions he needed to make – the successes and the times he realized, he needed to get back on track.

We talked about how it won’t be easy, in fact you might be put in uncomfortable situations, yet in your obedience to God, you can bring contentment and comfort… finding that you can be content even when things are not what you would consider perfect or fun, but through obedience to God, your heart can find contentment. This will grow your faith.

1 Sam  16: 14- 23

God brought David into the next situation of his life –  David didn’t try to make it happen

The situation was uncomfortable – however, God used David to bring comfort –  because he was obedient and trusted God to bring about his plans.

After devo time, we broke into our two ministry teams – Elementary and Middle School.  We talked through and then practiced.  I think they are going to do a great job!

Again, thank you for praying for all of us.

Calling it a night!

Mrs. g


Categories: Impact Trips! | Leave a comment

Blog at