David and I have finally decided to start a blog. Rather I have decided to start the blog for us. I have been here in Crownpoint, New Mexico, now for six weeks and David has been here about seven and a half. Already we have done a variety of things including a trip to Telluride, Colorado, many trips to Gallup, and our latest trip to Farmington, NM.
You may wonder why so many trips bring such excitement and variety but that would be because we now live in a town of around 2,300 people with one small grocery store and one small restaurant within an hour radius. We are now the minority with the community being made up of about 90% Navajo. Our lives in West Chester are now so far removed from the reality that we live in that it's as though we have traveled back in time or to another country. I have joked since we've arrived here that there was more to do and more going on in Haiti than there is here and I still believe that's true. I am reminded of my time living in Desarmes, Haiti, in the countryside however the landscape is vastly different here in New Mexico. The sky runs on for miles. You can see lights from far distant towns and the stars at night are though fingertips away. The mountains, mesas, and far reaching desert quickly humble us as we see the vastness in God's creation and yet He made us in His image.
We currently live maybe a quarter of a mile from the school in what is known as the Teacheridge. Most of the teachers or staff that are not Navajo live in duplexes in our little neighborhood. David is teaching Junior English at Crownpoint High School where literacy rate was said to be 16%. He is also the assistant football coach to the Crownpoint Eagles. They have played two games so far and sadly lost both however last year they employed the mercy rule at every game and thus far that has only happened once so I think we're at least doing better than last year. David's days are filled with time spent at the school or on the football field. My days, on the other hand, are mostly spent at home on the computer as I continue to work for Frontline Technologies. I try to make a point to get out during the day to enjoy the fresh air and some exercise. I am grateful to have found Morgan, another English teacher at the high school and an avid runner. We run together at least twice a week and it has definitely been not only a source of accountability but also a source of connection.
I have been able to connect with YoungLives here in Crownpoint and would love prayer in deciphering what kind of leadership commitment I should make. YoungLives is a ministry to tenn moms and there are a large number of teen moms here in the community so it is definitely a needed ministry and fellowship opportunity. Barbara Johnson actually started YoungLives here eight years ago but recently moved back to Pennsylvania due to some health issues so it definitely needs someone to step up and take leadership of the ministry if it's going to continue under YoungLives or any name.
David and I have gone to two of the churches here in town. One is a Christian Reformed Church and the other an Assembly of God church. At both we were warmly welcomed by the members and were even taken to lunch by Pastor Carlos of the Gospel Lighthouse AG church. There aren't really any other churches in our immediate community so we will likely settle into one of those but are definitely praying through what that might look like and would love for others to join us in that prayer.
That's the basic update for now. I'll write more about our specific outings in the near future now that the blog is finally up and running. Thanks for all who are supporting and praying for us. We appreciate it and are definitely feeling those prayers. Right now, our biggest prayer requests would be connection and community. We are really seeing the need for people to stay long term to invest in this community and these people. We want to be those people if the Lord wills and community would obviously make that a little easier. Until next time!