Interns :-)

I’ve been storing up lots of pictures of times with our Bright Lights “interns” to share with you all! We’ve really appreciated the extra help they have provided around our office, and we’ve enjoyed some fun times outside of “office hours” as well.

Singing in our basement

Each of the “interns” have been doing the “4:12 study” with one of the younger girls in our Bright Lights group. They met all together for the first time (above picture) and since that time they’ve been meeting once a week individually with their partner.

A couple times Kristin cooked a meal for all of us at the “guest house,” where they are staying. She is a very good cook / hostess. 🙂

Here Baylie and Kristin are packing boxes as we are gearing up for a conference trip. There is so much work that needs to be done before and after conferences — it’s been great to have the extra help. Last weekend we split up and Nickie, Rachel, Kristin, Emily, and Baylie went to the Nebraska Home School Conference while our family went to the Cincinnati Home School Conference. I’ll put up a few pictures of that soon.

Nickie taught the Desktop Publishing class this time instead of Stephen. She did a great job!

Tired and stressed from the class, but still similing! (because I told them to, haha 🙂 )

Cake and ice cream for Rachel’s birthday. Rachel (red) coordinates the BL Internships, and she is also in charge of purchasing. Both of those areas involve a lot, and I’m not sure how we would manage around here without Rachel! She and her sister Bekah (brown) have been working at the Bright Lights office 3 days a week for almost a year now.

We had a nice time with Kristin’s mom and sister who came to visit

“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.” Proverbs 17:22

Reinforcements

We have been blessed to have four young ladies from out of state join our team here for 10 weeks as “Bright Lights Interns.” It’s been fun to get to know each of them, and I’ve already been blessed by their friendship.

Sarah and Rachel doing some “internship orientation” with Kelsey, Emily, Bailey, and Kristen. 🙂

Bailey and Emily

Some of the projects they’ve been working on in the afternoons this week have included writing and recording testimonies for the Bright Lights Set 7 CD, planning the lesson and activity for the next Bright Lights meeting, working on sending a mailing out regarding upcoming conferences, shrink-wrapping and labeling, proofreading new resources, packing orders, and other misc. things.

The mornings are spent in personal study time, training videos, reading assignments, memorizing Colossians, and other things like that.

Emily and Kristen packing orders

Saturday we took off to head to the mall to do some witnessing. It was an exciting afternoon and we were very encouraged by some of the “Divine Encounters” the Lord arranged.

2011 Internships

We are excited to announce two Bright Lights Internships for 2011:

January 17 – March 25th
July 6 – September 16th

This ten-week internship includes intensive Biblical studies, practical discipleship training, and a variety of ministry opportunities including traveling with the Bright Lights team to help lead “Strong in the Lord Conferences” and “Radiant Purity Conferences”, office work, discipling younger women, witnessing outreaches, working at Noah’s Archive Christian Bookstore, and helping with whatever else the Lord brings our way during the time you are with us.

For young ladies ages 18 and up. Please contact us for more information.

Leader’s Training Attendees

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We want to express appreciation to each of you who were praying for the Leaders Training. It was a great week. Like any conference, it was tiring and had its stressful moments… but things went very well. Sarah mentioned that she could definitely tell people were praying for her. The Lord answered many specific requests. We had a sweet, encouraging, spiritually-minded group of young ladies who attended. And it sounds like quite a few more Bright Lights groups will be starting.

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The sessions seemed to go well, and …. drum roll please… the video worked, too! 🙂 From everything we can tell, it seems like the recording went very well. Stephen was able to edit as we went, so there is very little “post work” that has to be done. There *is* a little editing to do because of a few minor mistakes, such as the times Stephen fell asleep during sessions and woke up while falling off his chair :), etc.

IMG_5844 One of the activities during the training was to divide into small groups and, as a team, creatively present one Bright Lights lesson. The group pictured above did a great job teaching the Bright Lights lesson on “Keeping a Clear Conscience,” and we all enjoyed the way they illustrated how a girl will act in various situations depending on whether she has a “clear”, “guilty” or “dead” conscience.

Leaders Training Report

IMG_5802Stephen and Sarah giving their “Credentials without College” Presentation. (About life purpose, developing a ministry mindset, and having a bigger vision for your life.)

Tomorrow is the last day of the leader’s training. The taping has been going pretty smoothly. We are grateful for all Stephen’s “recruits” who have come to help tape, and for the patience of all the girls attending the conference.

IMG_5820 Abby Kramer shared about what the Lord has taught her through leading her Bright Lights group in Minnesota. She came to a Leaders Training six years ago and has been leading a group for several years now. She had a lot of good insights to share.

Actually, Sarah has asked several Bright Lights leaders (mostly from this area) share a session, and each one has been very mearningful.

IMG_5791_01 Each morning my dad leads a Bible study (we call them “Wisdom Seaches”) with the group. One of my favorite mornings was when we talked about the story David and Goliath. We discussed what the “giants” are in our day. What are the giants in our country that are defying the living God? We need more Davids to fight the Lord’s battles and conquer these giants.

IMG_5795 There are not many activities that are as satisfying as studying the Word of God together and learning from each other’s insights.

Update!

We are still alive and doing well here at the Bright Lights office. Sarah Smith and Abby Kramer joined us a few weeks ago.

IMG_5706_01Sarah and Abby

IMG_5710_01 Nickie, Abby, Sarah

There are always so many different things going on around here, it’s hard to give an accurate report!
Some of you may be wondering what we do here at the Bright Lights office, so I’ll give you a vague outline. Every morning, Sarah and my dad and I have been working on writing projects. During that time, the “interns”, Sarah K and Abby, have been doing various studies that Sarah has outlined for them.
After lunch, we focus more on office details. This includes e-mails and correspondence, planning and scheduling, and processing and shipping orders. These things take a lot of time, so we are very grateful for the help from our interns (and Nickie, of course 🙂 ).
The bookstore we are setting up in the front area of the Bright Lights office has also been an exciting and challenging adventure. Lots of progress has been made, but there is a lot more to do. There are so many decisions to make and items to purchase–and this is all so new to us–so we are sort of operating by going from one answered prayer to the next. 🙂 We are hoping to open in about a month.
Other recent projects have included working the Bright Lights CD and songbook, several encouraging times of witnessing together, and a Desktop Publishing class taught by Stephen.

Upcoming Plans!

We’re HOME! Wow, it was a great trip. The Lord gave us an incredible team and we were all excited to watch Him work throughout these past 18 days. Since I got behind on posting through the second half of the trip, I thought I’d do some catch up now. But first, I need to announce some important upcoming events for those of you who may not have heard.

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August 31-October 30: Bright Lights Internship

This nine-week internship includes Biblical studies, practical ministry training, and a variety of service opportunities with Bright Lights. Please email for more information. For young ladies 18 and up. There is still space for 1-2 more young ladies. Note: Flexibility may be arranged regarding dates.

October 5-9th: Bright Lights Leader’s Training

This five-day conference taught by Sarah Mally will equip, train and encourage young ladies who are interested in starting a Bright Lights group. It will also be an encouragement for any young lady who is interested in learning more about discipling others. Bright Lights leaders who have already been through the Training on CD are also welcome to attend to enjoy the fellowship and be refreshed with new insights and ideas. For young ladies ages 16+. Mothers are also welcome. See our website for topics and further info. See schedule for logistical details.

Contact us for questions!

Restful Break

A few weeks ago at church I was thinking, “It would be really nice if we could do something fun with the Bright Lights interns. They’ve been working so hard.”
About 10 minutes later a lady from our church came up to Sarah and said, “I thought it might be nice for you and Grace and the Internship girls to do something fun together. Would you like to take a little trip and stay in our condo in Galena?”

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We just arrived home from the wonderful little 2-day “retreat” in the cute historic town of Galena, Illinois. The shopping was fun, the food was delicious, and the weather was unbelievably nice for this time of year. But we all agreed that the highlight of the trip was the good discussions we got into about the Lord.

Another big highlight of the trip was the witnessing opportunities the Lord opened. We were able to share the gospel several times.

The Lord is so good. Just the fact that He saved us and gives us life and breath is amazing, but He continues to bless us with undeserved gifts.
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights…” James 1:17

Thoughts on Discipleship

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This morning my dad shared with the internship girls some principles of discipleship. He shared how when you are discipling someone, it’s imporant for it to be “hands on!” Do ministry together. Do evangelism together. Take them with you. That’s what Jesus did with His disciples.
It’s also important to remember that it’s hard to bring someone further spiritually than you’ve come yourself. (Another reason to be growing in the Lord!)