Reaping Songs of Joy! Summer Update :)

Hello to all,

First of all, I want to apologize to everyone for my lack of communication over the past few months. I have failed to give updates on all of the good things the Lord is doing here in Powell County, Kentucky. Thankfully, I have had a busy summer and have had many opportunities to use my God given gifts for His glory. Please allow me to share just a few of the many things the Lord has done over the past few months:

VBS

My favorite week of summer so far has been VBS week at Stanton Baptist Church. For a whole week, myself and many others from Stanton Baptist were blessed to pour into over a hundred young kids that came out to learn about God’s Word. Many kids were encouraged to trust in God and to turn to Him in times of fear. It was loads of fun for all and the Lord definitely blessed us, but I specifically want to talk about the youth VBS that I was able to lead up. I was privileged to have a whole week to teach youth ages 13-18 about the love of God & His desire to use each one of them as a tool for His kingdom. Most of the girls that came were girls that I have already been doing discipleship with over the past months that I’ve been here, and they were all set ablaze to be bold with their faith and to truly portray a godly character to their peers. However, there were also some girls to attend that are not regular church goers and they were encouraged to pursue a relationship with God.

We did many fun things like play games, build our own roller coasters made out of swim noodles, and activities that aided the students in understanding the bible lesson. But at the end of the week, when I asked all of them what their favorite part of VBS was they all had the same answer- the worship. After every bible study I did with the students, we had a time of worship where the girls were encouraged to allow the message to sink into their hearts and truly give their heavy burdens to the Lord. The lights were dimmed, the room was cool, I had my guitar in hand….it was just them and God- something that most of these girls don’t get to experience on a regular basis. The Spirit of God was so evident as these girls worshipped in Spirit and in truth, some for the first time in their lives. Tears filled my eyes as I recognized the satisfaction it brought to these girls. They had finally found what they’ve been looking for all this time- Jesus.

I am truly thankful for God’s grace- through which I am able to have these opportunities to teach God’s Word.  I shared much on His grace through stories of my own personal testimony and also through teaching about the life of the apostle Paul. Grace is a subject that a lot of the times does not make sense to us- mostly because grace shouldn’t make sense. Why should a perfect God love us imperfect people so perfectly? He shouldn’t- but that’s grace. Seeing that message click in the minds of these young women will be something that I never forget. Oh grace- what a scandal!

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Discipleship

Discipleship is still going very well and my oh my are these girls GROWING. Because it is summer time and the girls have been out of school, I have had a lot more time to disciple them- one on one and in groups- in many different ways including sleepovers, lunch dates, car rides, hiking trips, etc. These girls are so thirsty for God’s Word and desire constant fellowship with me and each other. It’s been so amazing to develop even stronger friendships with the girls and really has been a blessing to this sometimes very lonely missionary. These girls bless me in the way they ask questions, request for prayer, and desire to do mission work with me. But they also bless me just by being who they are- a group of fun and energetic girls that always keeps me on my toes. If I could only count the number of times I’ve heard “Amanda, will you pray for me?” or “Amanda, what does this scripture mean?” or my favorite “Amanda, you’ll never believe what the Lord showed me in my quiet time last night!”. These girls are getting it! The gospel has come alive to them and they desire nothing more than to be servants of the Most High King! If only you can understand what it means to have youth in Powell County that actually seek after Jesus! Wow. Our God is amazing!!!

1013167_686003094747013_597848146_nA car full of friends & a heart full of joy! (:

969340_665342273479762_829127298_nDiscipleship while hiking at the beautiful Natural Bridge

970885_666110790069577_2069177330_nGroup discipleship- Mexican food style 😉

1012109_673094936037829_1542943366_n Lunch date discipleship

552767_641040722576584_1088018654_nOne-on-One discipleship over shakes (:

Home Bible Studies

Every Thursday afternoon, Sonya and myself open up our home to the youth of Powell County for food, worship, and the Word. We usually have a different sized group every week, but the Lord is always faithful to bring girls through the door. Over the past few weeks we have been studying and digging deep into the book of Galatians. It is always a sweet time and usually leads to more discussions later.

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Promise Child

A good work is being done through the Promise Child ministry here in Powell County, Kentucky. I have been delighted to witness many families grow closer to Christ through the bible sticks that were given to many of the children, and also through communication with myself, Pastor Eric, and Pastor Brent. This summer, a few children were able to go to church camp because of the support that they receive from Promise Child. What a blessing! It’s also awesome to see how perfectly God works out small details. For example, the child that I am a Promise Child mentor to is a baby boy that is 6 months old. Diapers, wipes, formula, cereal, bottles, pacifiers, bibs, medicines, etc. are purchased by the support that this family receives from the ministry. I have seen on more than one occasion God’s perfect timing portrayed in how this family gets their support. One night, Baby K ran completely out of formula and by our surprise- funds from Promise Child came in the next day and we were able to run to the store and purchase some more. God is so faithful! Faithful to provide for physical needs, but even more so, faithful to call more and more people to Himself. “For the promise is for you and your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.” –Acts 2:39

Stanton Baptist

I am blessed to continue in ministry with Stanton Baptist Church and to serve under Pastor Jonathan Lewis. I am thankful for what he allows me to do with the youth in the church and I look forward to seeing what the Lord has for me in new ministries that will begin at Stanton Baptist.

Personal Notes:

Over the last week of June I got to go on a 4 days vacation with my Kentucky family to Ohio. We went to Spirit Song- a concert where many Christian bands performed. I had a great time!

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Weather- I will let the picture speak for itself……..

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Coming up soon!

  • This Thursday (July 25, 2013), myself and the Acteen girls will be visiting Hope Hill again to minister to the girls there. This time, we are doing a full chapel service and I am excited to share that one of the students (who  is also part of Promise Child) will be sharing her testimony! Please be in prayer for all of us as we share the good news of Christ!
  • Sunday afternoon we leave for church camp!!! The girls and myself have been looking forward to this for months and can’t believe that it is almost here! I am going as a junior counselor and I look forward to having opportunities to pray with girls and talk with them about the bible studies that will be given. Yay!
  • I will be back in California in just 15 short days! I am coming home on furlough from August 6-27th and I look forward to seeing some of you! It will be nice to have this time to refresh, be poured into, and hopefully gain more support. Thank you for keeping my home visit in your prayers.

Kristina Takes Kentucky!

I am BEYOND excited to announce that beginning in late August, Kristina White will be joining me in my ministries here in Powell County, Kentucky!!! I look forward to partnering with her in sharing God’s Word with the youth here, visiting Promise Child families, and working with Stanton Baptist. Kristina and I have been in prayer about doing ministry together in Powell County for over a year (Yes, before I was even here!) and we are both very grateful that the Lord has opened up this door for us. She plans on being here for 3 months, and she will arrive with me when I return to Kentucky from my furlough trip on August 27th. We have been praying and receiving vision from the Lord about a few things that are not part of my regular ministry here in Kentucky. Please pray with us as we are hoping to plan a girl’s weekend retreat, a prayer ministry at the high school, and a 2 week road trip to share at different churches and partner with a few ministries. We both thank you for your support and we look forward to sharing all that the Lord does through us as a team.

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To sum it all up, the Lord has been SO good to me this summer. The few months before were extremely difficult, but I am now rejoicing over the harvest of fruit that is being produced! “Those who sow in tears will reap songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with shouts of joy, carrying sheaves with him” -Psalm 126:5-6. I’ll see y’all in 15 days when I return with shouts of joy!!!

All For Him,

Amanda West

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One thought on “Reaping Songs of Joy! Summer Update :)

  1. So excited to hear what’s been happening in your neck of the woods. Your room is all set and waiting for you. Can’t wait to see your sweet face and squeeze you.

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