Academy 31 2015 | Day Six

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“The dream comes through much effort.”

We wrote this on the girls’ PT markerboard this morning as we asked them to do something most had never done before: 100 push-ups. Instead of attempting them all at once, we showed them how to do a pyramid. This pyramid had 4 different exercises, including push-ups. We did one of each exercises, then 2, then 3, and so on, all the way up to 10, then back down to 1. By the time we finished, every single girl had successfully completed 100 push-ups!

Today’s morning electives were First Aid 2 and Gluten-Free Cooking. Enjoy the pictures!

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In her class on Gluten-Free Cooking, Mrs. Ginger Umstattd explained how wheat has changed dramatically over the years into something that can be toxic for our bodies. That’s why there’s a much greater tendency toward gluten allergies and reactions to eating things with wheat. She guided the girls in making several of her favorite gluten-free recipes.

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Leah shared her testimony over lunch. Among other things, she told how a certain verse impacted her greatly: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed your transgressions from you.”

All of our testimonies have been a powerful reminder that none of us are perfect, and that it’s OK to be real and genuine and freely admit and share our imperfections and inadequacies. When we see how God works through imperfect people, we’re encouraged to know it’s His power that’s working, and that He is not held back by our frailty.

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Afternoon classes were Missions with Bethany and First Aid Electives with Sunshine and Mel.

Bethany is preparing to serve overseas and shared things she’s learned in the past year. She gave practical ideas for getting involved in missions – whether through learning, going, sending. The girls completed some hands-on projects in the class.

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And First Aid Electives are always a fun challenge with hands-on opportunities to splint, take care of blood and guts, and think through all the issues involved in securing a scene, staying safe, and working together as a team.

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We enjoyed chicken fajitas for dinner. As always, the kitchen staff delivered! Mama L grilled our chicken, and the kitchen staff made all the best toppings – salsa, guacamole, pico de gallo, Mexican rice, refried beans. After dinner each evening, the girls do the clean-up work to give the kitchen staff a little time off. Oh, and sometimes they also throw soap suds at each other…that’s part of the job, right?

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Tonight’s evening activity added a dramatic dimension and brought out a fun, zany side in the girls. They were divided into three teams; each team was given a pillowcase of random props and 15 minutes to create a skit using those props. Here are the teams posing in character after their skits.



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Our small groups included discussions and thoughts on the message brought this afternoon by Mrs. Adams. She joined us again to speak on her favorite psalm, Psalm 121. It’s a psalm of ascent, referring to the ascent up to Jerusalem 3 times a year by all the males in Israel for the required feast. She posited that the hills referred to in the phrase on “lifting our eyes to the hills” were actually fearsome things of danger. The hills were quite possibly terrifying to travel through, or at least very difficult. They made the travelers realize their need for help and call upon God as their help.

God is the help we can trust in to keep His children’s feet from stumbling. Our destination is not the earthly Jerusalem, but heaven; and He will guard us and keep us in the path so that we safely arrive there. We can trust His Father’s heart in this.

She also shared her recent journey of learning to display the same grace that God displays to her – unmerited favor, undeserved goodness. This precipitated an insightful discussion on conquering judgmentalism, learning to love those around us, and recognizing truth while exercising compassion.



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