“The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25
As I write out this ancient proverb I am sitting aboard the Sea Princess with a gentle breeze blowing across my face as the slow rhythmic rocking back and forth of the waves causes me to relax and my body conforms into the lounge chair on the ships deck. Yes, I am the grateful recipient of some very generous people who chose to bless Dan and me with an Alaskan Cruise in honor of our 25 years together in ministry and marriage!
1986 was a life changing year for us. It was the year that the Lord brought a man & woman together who both loved the Lord and loved ministering to youth. It was also the year that we had our first experience with the ministry of full time Christian Education and quickly developed a passion for the amazing opportunity it provided to mentor, disciple, love and impact young people for life. In less than two years of marriage we knew that we wanted to commit our lives to the ministry of Christian education. (despite the meager compensation, zero retirement plan, massive amount of work hours and having too many “bosses” – you see as a Christian educator you have to please not only your Principal, but your entire school board and the parents of every student – simply impossible!)
Last summer we organized a multi year reunion (classes of 1985 – 2000)of Brookside Christian High School alumni, the school where we ministered for 11 years before moving on to found Jim Elliot Christian High School. It was a spectacular weekend of reminiscing, reuniting and remembering! There was much laughter, love and we even all shed a few tears. I have been to many reunions over my lifetime and this was “hands down” the most real, the most fulfilling and the most joyful of them all. You see we had something very special during the Brookside Christian High School “glory years” as many refer to them as.
- A small tight knit group of under 200 students each year from a wide variety of families, cultures and backgrounds
- A group of staff members who were committed to not merely teaching their subject matter but to pouring out their lives into young people
- Chapel Services that featured some of the best youth speakers in the country and where students truly “met God” in a way that they had never before experienced
- A student activity program to rival none other, that not only created memorable moments to be cherished for a lifetime but built up student leaders, created lifetime bonds of friendship and provided a level of enthusiasm & excitement that made the school “the place to be”.
Not to say that BCHS was perfect…in fact in many ways it was very far from perfection (one of the reasons we chose to create Jim Elliot Christian High School to take our vision of the “perfect” Christian school to the next level) and yet there was something very special about that era and anyone who experienced it will vouch for that. During those foundational years in our Christian Education experience both Dan and I held a myriad of positions which would ultimately give us the experience and expertise to start a new Christian school years later. Dan held the positions of janitor (nothing better than to start at the bottom), Teacher (Bible, Physical Education and even a short stint with US Government…you BCHS students rember that?), Athletic Director, Coach, Counselor, Vice Principal, Principal, Dean of Students and Chaplain. I began as a Physical Education Teacher who was surprised at being given Typing classes (HA! I “hunt & peck”) but quickly began to pick up other jobs that I have been uniquely gifted to do. I became the Student Activity Director and Leadership Teacher, Yearbook & Journalism Advisor, Guidance Counselor, Admissions Director, Director of Student Affairs and Director of Development. I even spent several summers as the front desk secretary! While at times
it seemed crazy to take on such a wide and varied number of positions (and even as I typed them all I got a bot exhausted!), the Lord knew that He was preparing us for a very special purpose down the road. We would have never had the ability to begin a new school without the experience those positions brought, the years of ministering in a Christian school and the numerous BCHS students and families that would support and encourage us in the starting of JECHS.
So even though our time at Brookside ended abruptly and with much angst…we will never regret the experience we received, the lifelong relationships we made and the amazing opportunities we had to impact others. To God be the glory!
During the reunion weekend, our former students presented us with a gift of thanks and appreciation for our 25 years of service in Christian Education. Apparently they had been emailing folks for several months asking for donations for the Lambdin’s and they ultimately were able to purchase an Alaskan Cruise for us to enjoy. What a blessing! While we are unaware of everyone who contributed to this amazing gift, we want to say a HUGE thank you for your generosity and for allowing us to be refreshed in such a wonderful way! We know that the Lord, who is always true to His word, will indeed refresh you through your generosity to us!
In the next post I will share more about being refreshed, renewed & reenergized!