Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Can it be? One year already?

Wow! It's really been a year! It has been 1 year since I interviewed at Noble Academy- Cleveland! I never expected to still be where I am at today! It sure has been one heck of a year! A year of great joys, of intense sorrows, of crazy excitement, of heartbreak and loss! I have grown! I have grown to know Jesus with greater intimacy! I have learned more about myself and who I am because of the Jesus in me, because of the genetics within me as I have spent time with my Aunts getting to know them more from here in my hometown (Auntie Carole & Auntie Sharon ) all the way to California (Aunt Theresa)! 
I thought I was interviewing for a job that would keep me here for a few months as a sub, until I left to teach in a different country. That was my plan and I surely thought that was God's as well! Just as the Word says  “To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:”
Ecclesiastes 3:1 and that there is! Although I was so sure I knew what God had in mind, I am so glad He has our best interest in mind! 
I think even though I wanted to leave, I wanted to go to a different country, God had a reason, a purpose for me to be right here in Ohio! And as I see and reflect today I can see it is more than even just one reason, it has been many that He has planted me right here for such a time as this!
And I can't even believe I am saying this, but I am okay with that!! I am thankful! I am at peace, I am Glad that I have been able to be here with family, with friends with my very students & staff! 
So has this year has proven to be exceptionally difficult: unexpectedly losing my precious grandma, having to take a step backwards as it feels and live with my parents, unexpectedly losing my uncle and many ups & downs in between! 
But despite the hard there have been so many praises and joys of staying back in Ohio from getting to visit with my Grandma every week from September to January and for that I will be forever thankful, as we had such precious moments of holding hands, chatting, rubbing her feet, talking about how Alex Tervec was my great grandma's crush to having the opportunity of thanking her for showing exactly what Martin Luther King Jr was taking about! To getting to be a teacher at Noble Academy and having some of the most precious students that I absolutely love, to watching friendships grow as I was given amazing support through some tough days, I saw the importance of family and the healing that can take place when you can just be together! 
Exactly one year ago, when I interviewed on September 12th, I had no clue that this year would look the way it did, but I would not trade it for anything, not even Africa! This past weekend I was challenged and reminded of three very important things: 1. As I sang along to a very familiar song that I love so much.... "Jesus at the center of it all
Jesus at the center of it all
From beginning to the end
It will always be, it's always been You
Jesus, Jesus
Nothing else matters
Nothing in this world will do
'Cause Jesus You're the center
Everything revolves around You
Jesus You
At the center of it all
At the center of it all
Jesus be the center of my life
Jesus be the center of my life
From beginning to the end
It will always be, it's always been You
Jesus, Jesus
Nothing else matters
Nothing in this world will do
'Cause Jesus You're the center
Everything revolves around You
Jesus You!" I was challenged by the Holy Spirit asking me if I was making Jesus the center of my all? Of my life! I am so thankful He reminded me to get my focus back in order!! 
2. Gods timing is perfect, as I have gotten to journey with my precious sister for the last year through ups and downs, passes and fails.... I was able to witness first hard the result of intense faith, blessing after blessing poured out, I saw dreams come true, I saw a very thankful and peaceful friend reflecting Christ through the whole part of this part of her journey... even through the waiting.... and I was so blessed and encouraged to do the same! Thanks Tish for being an example and one of my biggest cheerleaders!! 
3. Finally in a church I was visiting with Tish in Wooster on Sunday.... I again was singing along to another familiar song Oceans and the part the Lord really used to speak to me: "Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior!" I for so long had my own definition of what taking me deeper meant... but I never put it into perspective of right here right now where I am at!!! 

So that is my prayer and hearts cry as I end this post is that the Lord would take me even deeper right here right now, right where I am at that it would make my FAITH STRONGER!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Loss

Loss, according to dictionary.com : the state of being deprived of or of being without something that one has had. Oh how I hate those words! These past two weeks have seemed to ring those very words again and again as first it was the loss of one dear ladies mom and then my roomie lost her last grandparent and then another dear lady who is so dear to me it was her dad and then just a few days after that, it was the loss of one of the dear gals I went to college with who loss her precious young brother. My prayers, thoughts, and heart went out again and again for all these precious ladies and friends, I have spent the past two weeks praying again and again for these dear families, because I have had the honor of knowing all these dear ladies it felt so close to home, not something distant and unfamiliar, so I prayed and prayed! And then boom it hit so close once again for a 2nd time this year on the same side of the family, (my grandma in January) now my uncle on Friday suddenly passed away. I am left with questions, sadness, pain... I keep asking why? Why should my dear aunts have to lose another brother, why should my young 26 and 30 year old cousin have to lose a dad so young? Why does it all have to happen at the same time? 
All my questions might not have answers. It's okay to hurt, it's okay to ask why, it's okay to wonder! 
But what I do know is: we live in a very broken World, that is full of hate and pain, no one is safe from death or the pain from it. We are human, we hurt, but I also know, we have HOPE! Guys we need hope!!  “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Isaiah 41:10 The Lord has us, He is our hope and our promise, He is our peace! I know our hearts hurt and we don't fully understand, but please know we do not journey alone, when we have a relationship with Jesus, there is life and hope beyond this life on earth, this is not the end! So when we have Jesus we have a hope and peace that goes with us, even though our darkest times!! 

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Dear Future Husband

Dear my future Husband,
I am praying for you even now, I know God is preparing my heart and yous as well! Oh how my heart longs to meet you and know you! To be a wife and a mother!! I can not promise to be perfect or have it all together, but I can promise to love and serve JESUS everyday, to be made new by Him! I will committee to learning and growing day by day! oh how i pray the LORD calls us to ministry... maybe overseas! I know His plans are perfect! I look forward to the day, I will finally get tomcat you! until then as I wait, I will commit to growing and being refined in the LORD! I will pray GOD is growing you into a GODLY leader, warrior and lover of GOD and His Word!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

He Knows Best!





I am  so glad and so thankful that God knows us best of all! He knows exactly what we needed and where we need to be!
To think just 6 short months ago I was completely lost as to where I was suppose to be teaching, I was up to where the Lord would put me, but at the same time I was almost sure that it was Africa!
Well... Thank goodness the Lord leads, because on September 12th and 13th I interviewed for two subbing jobs back to back and on both of those days I had the amazing privilege to visit with my precious grandma because my interviews were right around the corner from where she was staying! Amongst enjoying frostys, the sunsine and the upclose and personal squirrels in the court yard, the Lord laid it on my heart to ask my grammy gram, if she knew Jesus and in her precious voice, she said she wasn't sure, I asked her if she would like to ask Jesus into her heart and she said yes!!! So together we prayed and asked Jesus and that day she give her life to Jesus!
Then the next few days proved to be busy but oh so perfect as I helped Emily put the finishing touches on her wedding and I got to truly enjoy the week with her and then see her marry the man of her dreams as her maid of honor and celebrate her truly beautiful wedding, then after a busy wedding weekend, I got a call Tuesday that I had gotten the long term sub job in a 1st grade classroom at Noble Academy, I was ecstatic!! It was perfect..... I started the following day on Wednesday September 21st.... All that I could think was it was perfect... I could sub until Christmas break and then leave to go to Africa! Well three weeks into subbing in the 1st grade classroom, I got pulled into the vice principal's office, being told the elementary special ed teacher was leaving and that since I was licensed they would need me to sub in her spot for as long as I could or until they found a new teacher to replace her...... I was a little thrown off by it!!! But I went with it... in the middle of figuring out the new special education job, On October 11th I got an email from Africa, stating that I had not gotten the job. For the first few days after receiving the email, I was a bit sad, confused and even bitter. But I also knew deep down inside God had a bigger and better plan! And boy did did he! I let Noble Academy know, I would love to be their full time Special Education Teacher!
The last 5 months of teaching at Noble Academy have been amazing, as I work with an amazing staff who are kind, fun, energetic, passionate, giving and so helpful! Especially my two special ed teacher buddies who have helped me so much as we have worked great together as a team! I have made a great work friend as we were the newbies together, thanks Ashley for being my friend and I am so glad you stayed! And last but not lest I worked for an amazing boss who loves the Lord and is incredibly kind and helpful and I know I can always go to her with any question and feel completely supported! Yes it is school and yes there have been bumps in the road and yes it was a huge pay cut, but it truly has been one of the biggest blessings and opportunities I am learning so much, growing as a teacher, I love my kids and my job!

Aside from a job that has been a blessing, I have gotten to do life with my 3 dearest friends!
I have gotten to be spend 2 weekends a month with my dear sister and friend journeying through lifes ups and downs as we learn about and pursue the Lord more and more, being able to live and do life with such a dear friend is a complete honor and joy!! I love that I get to worship Jesus with you, thank you for being there with a hug and prayers when I find out bad news, thank you for all your listening ears and thank you for loving me so much!! I love you so much Tish!!
Getting to be Auntie to dear Easton and go on monthly... sometimes weekly shopping trips with his mommy Hannah has been such an amazing honor, so fun! I love our talks and just doing life with you Han, I love you girl!
Oh Emily, Wedding shananigans, your first home, your first pet, our amazing sushi dates, you just letting me come over just because I needed to be with you, I needed you to distract me because my heart was hurting.... you always said, just come over! Or the time you brought your kitty to see my grammy gram or that one thing that happened this summer and you acted like it was no big deal! Em I love doing life with you sweet friend, I love lady you lady!!

But the cherry on top of the scoops of friendships and the job that is a blessing are the weekly visits that I got to have with my grammy gram because she was only 3 minutes from the school that I am teaching at! I loved all my visits with her over the last 5 months if it be just holding her hand, asking her questions, telling her about my day or students, she always told me how beautiful either I or my smile was! I loved my time with her over the last 27 years, an amazing privilege indeed!
Our conversations included leading her to Jesus, prayer, getting to ask her where she learned how to be so culturally diverse and excepting and loving of all people, getting to thank her for her example that I have learned from, her telling me Alex Tervec was great grandmas boyfriend because she liked him so much, how much she loved her family, stories about her dogs, how wonderful the squirrels were, wheel chair rides around the garden and so much more!! I am going to miss my precious grammy gram so much, but I am so glad that the Lord allowed me to be here for such a time as this! There is no place I would rather be than right here! I got to speak at my grandmas funeral last week:
"My Tribute to Grandma Beverly Sapatka" 1-25-2017
Grandma left such an impact on so many lives and so many memories, one of my favorites was our bumming adventures, which was us simply riding around in her car telling stories and laughing on our way to shop or eat. I could share stories and memories for days. But I will say one of the greatest and most valuable lessons I have learned from grandma is the ability to love and give freely of yourself without expecting anything in return, A true servant indeed and a model of Mark 12:31 "Love your neighbor as yourself" My grandma was one of the strongest woman I know, from winning her battle with cancer to loving and forgiving again and again despite the pain it caused her, no matter what she faced, she went on loving! She loved diversity, and appreciated people from every culture and race, and amongst many things I know that is where I get my love of all people from, as I had the privilege for the last 27 years to watch and listen as grandma talked highly of every person and treated everyone with great respect and love! For the many examples and legacy of love she has left, I will be forever grateful! Her legacy will live on in her 4 children and 7 grandchildren.
2 Things I know Grandma would want you to know:
1. "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. - John 3:16 Because of her relationship with Jesus, she is dancing with Jesus right now!
2. She would want us to forgive and love everyone! No matter what! Lets make her proud!!

So like I said!! I am so glad He knows best!!!


“even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:10‬

So even as I sit here writing this and my mom is in the hospital staying overnight and the doctors are not sure what is wrong with her and as we wait for test results! I know the Lord has me right where he wants me! He has my family right where He wants them, He is softening hearts and breaks down walls!I choose to trust Him no matter what! I know He is in control and has our best in mind!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

In the Waiting....

 Waiting! That seems to be a very common theme in my life over the last few years!  But today I looked up the word wait and this is what it said:

1. To remain inactive or in a state ofrepose
2. to be available or inreadiness
3. to continue as one is in expectation of;await

Number 2 might be my favorite,  in the season of waiting, I definitely want to be available to whatever the Lord would have for me to do and to be! Actually, I love that word available because when we set our hearts and our minds  to be available, God can use us! So instead of saying, I'm waiting... what would it look like if I started saying,  I'm AVAILABLE  for whatever the Lord has?

And what does the Bible say about waiting?

“Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭27:14‬ ‭

I love this encouragement from David! Even David had to wait on the Lord often, and I don't mean just once or twice but again and again and again! So if David can wait so can I!  And as David waited on the Lord, the Lord directed him!  Not only did he directed him but he sat with him,  even in the waiting the Lord was right there with him! 

So as I sit essentially jobless  at the moment!  Because I told the school in Cleveland no,  because I did not have the Lords peace upon it! I do you sit here with great peace knowing that the Lord is caring for my every moment! So as I sit and wait on August 22 to come, to see if Africa is indeed where the Lord would have me to teach! I choose to make available my new word,  so instead of saying I am waiting I am going to say, "I'm available for whatever the Lord has for me!"





Thursday, July 14, 2016

Dear Future Me!

 Dear future me,
Right now as you sit in a time of  time of uncertainty and the unknown, know that God is absolutely in control! Right now it may not make much sense not knowing the future not knowing where I'm going to teach not knowing where I am going to live!  No one else may understand, but I know that you told me to just wait on you Lord! So are they wait I know that you were going to teach me so much dear Lord and I know that when I look back in a month or maybe two months or year I'm going to see how very much that the Lord has seminary life! But I have to say it's hard when my family and people around me  I trying to find me jobs and trying to tell me that I need to know what I'm doing! But I know my biggest job right now is to wait on you Lord! So right now I'm in a crossroad I trying to decide if I'm supposed to teach in Cleveland at the charter school or am I  supposed to go to Papa New Guinea or to Africa??? But thank you Lord that you know  Lord what exactly my future holds!  I thought for sure but now I would know what I was doing! I'm trying to learn and be sensitive to your voice in knowing what to do if I should act or sit still or tell one school know that I can't come or yes to another school although I know for sure is I want to be within your will Lord! Also I do know  that you gave me a piece about not filling out the big application process for the public schools I know too many that makes no sense but I know you told me not to do it! Thank you for your peace! Lord please give me peace about the decision that I am to make in the near future or whenever you would see fit! Lord would you show me what it is that you woul have me to do?
 Thank you that you are teaching me in the season! Thank you for my friend Tish who's willing to listen and think you got you given her a like mine to understand! Thank you for her prayers and your listening ears and for her understanding and for her with them! Her friendship is a blessing! Thank you Lord for your word that you're teaching me so much as it been reading your word and devotions to go with it Lord I Thank you  that this has been a season of growth! A season of learning to trust your faithfulness for me! Thank you for the two weeks of rest so far and for  this third week  I am in now thank you so much for rest and a break from school!  Thank you that I've been able to be a part of helping Emily get ready for her wedding shower and her wedding to come! Thank you for cold air conditioning on hot summer days and nights thank you for a place to sleep and think you for my family! I do pray for my family that they would come to know you  Jesus  that they were desire the things of you that they would no longer turn their back towards you but that you would give them a hunger and desire to know you and to have you be a part of their lives! I know that you can do it Lord I pray for healing in the marriage of my mom and dad and a paver salvation for Ben and Zach that they would turn the hearts to you! Thank you Jesus for moments of friendship with Tish and Emily and Hannah!  Thank you for continuously revealing yourself to me as in learning more more about your character the character of God thank you for showing me more about myself what I need to work on what are my strengths and what my weaknesses are!  Thank you is your teaching me about my strengths and weaknesses that you were teaching me that I have to be stronger and that I can't let my emotions control me nor can I put so much expectation on my friend Tish because I know that it hurts her and it affects our friendship so blurred would you continuously help me to give every emotion TU hope at the come under control I pay rebalance Lord Jesus that you just help me to control my emotions the way they need to, help me to find that balance in when and how to share help me not to hold my heart in and put it all on one person but help me to come to you first I think you guy am growing in the Syria but I pray for your continued guidance I know that you will help me!Thank you that you do not give up on me I think you for your grace and your mercy and I even think you got in these past few weeks you've been teaching me that I need to have mercy the way that Jonah had to have mercy even when it doesn't make sense or too hard Lord would you continuously help me to  show that grace and mercy to my whole family but especially to my dad! Sometimes I feel stuck and don't quite know how to do it so would you help me Lord? Thank you Jesus for a car that runs well Lord would you help me to figure out what I can do with my car if you call me to a different country to teach? Blurred I think you got even now you're planning each and every detail and so  I continue to serve under and place every detail in peace into your hand because I know that your plan is the very best for my life take my life for it belongs to you! I love you and I love what you're going to do with my future! Thank you for going before me and with me yours truly love Heather!! July 14, 2016

Monday, June 13, 2016

Decissions





Decisions..... Lord knows I do like to make them! Not at all! So here I am sorting through so much! So much to process and think through! I am getting ready to say goodbye to my first real teaching job, a job  I learned so much at and grew through some pretty tough trials both with students and staff, a job I could not imagine getting through without God's grace! I can say I survived two years of managing adults not my passion by a long shot, there were moments when I never thought I was going to make it! I learned so much about Autism and how amazing kids are and how they could fight any obstacle thrown their way if it be a label or a person's view, I saw kids define the odds and amaze us all! I saw the fruits of our labor, kids counting by 10's and 5's kids writing complete sentences with a capital letter and a period! I saw my kids fight against their inner self and remain seated even when everything in their bodies wanted to to get up or scream! I  learned so much from the little people in my classroom, I learned about their unconditional love and while some grew to be my favorites and were the master of daily hugs, I will be forever grateful for each one of them that taught me something! As this chapter ends I am both relieved and saddened!
I am ready for both a new chapter and beginning, but at this present moment I am unsure? I have signed a contract for Accel charter schools, I do not yet know what school I will be at or what grade and that doesn't bother/worry me as much as the unsureness of is this job for me? It was defiantly something I took before the Lord and sought Him on, I did not sense a no, but I also am not sure that I heard a yes?  Its a weird place to be, especially since I thought I wanted a different charter school... but Accel said that was not a good school? I also have had two jobs offers for schools in different countries that both do not start until January which would still allow me to be here for Emily's wedding in September, but they are not defiant yeses either! So like I said decisions to make and much to sort through!
So as I spend the next few days seeking the Lords wisdom and clarity I know He will lead and direct me, He is faithful and I trust Him!!

(Romans 11:20) O, Father, I do not want to miss any part of Your plan because of my own unbelief! Please forgive me for any unbelief, and help me walk by faith.

Lord God, teach me knowledge and good judgement, for I believe in your commands. (Ps. 119:66)