Sunday, March 20, 2011


Engagement Story: Psalm 118:23 This is the Lord's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes.

I am engaged to Tashi Annica Bent, an incredible blessing in my life! This entry is to share a little bit about our journey and how God led me to pursue/marry Tashi. The answer is simple, yet complex. Simple in the sense that, I really didn't know but simply believed that was what He was leading me to do. Complex in that it was a lengthy struggle in prayer, experience and counsel with others, and waiting for God to answer (many) prayers and open (many) doors. Waiting was not easy, but after a long 7 months (April thru October), on Oct 26th Tashi was approached by Lynn Stieglitz (elder of the Leo AC church, where Tashi considered to be her home church) and Linda Schrenk (her host "mom" in the states) about what I felt God was doing in my heart/life. She then responded with a very similar conviction and experience of God leading her to pray for me. Prior to our first conversation (Nov 4), we had both already been praying for the other for a long time and had been granted confidence and peace this was God's doing. When we first met (Nov 12) to discuss our perspectives and heard from each other a similar experience, it only affirmed and confirmed it for each us. This was the Lord's doing, and it has been and is marvelous in our eyes.

Before I share more detail, I want to highlight Biblical principles that God has given to us and by which we've been guided. All of this reflects His love, grace and power. As Rev 4:11 states, Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.

Principle 1: We walk by faith, not by sight. 
Principle 2: In a multitude of counselors, there is wisdom, safety and victory.
  • Proverbs 11:4, 15:22 and 24:6 speak to this principle. Without leadership, guidance and counsel, plans fail and people fall. But with many counselors, there is wisdom, safety and success.
  • Applied to my experience, I have had a multitude of counselors from day 1 (well, day 3 to be exact). John Eisenmann, Nate Hughes and David Thames were initially those in contact with me in April and May when God first started softening my heart. Then in June Kirk Plattner and Chad Huber stepped in as "personal" counselors and mentors. Kirk gave me valid reason for needing to talk to my parents and also for talking to Lynn. My brother Matt was there to listen as I shared on the phone. When I arrived home in July and August, I spoke with my parents and listened to their counsel. Several close friends and prayer warriors listened to my experiences and provided sound advice. David and Kate Ringger not only listened and supported, but they challenged me to let go and let God. After my parents were able to process and pray through this, they decided to contact Lynn in October. He offered his advice. My home elder, Curt Frank, was contacted and supported contacting Tashi and he also shared input and wise counsel. Jon Aupperle sent insightful questions and perspective and gave me Biblical truth to stand on. I did not always get the advice or counsel I wanted, but through them God spoke truth into my life, challenged my "self-sightedness" and helped me to walk in the Word. Really, God gets all the glory in this. I felt an odd conviction to pray about Tashi, and John encouraged me to pray, so I did. Then I felt the need to talk to Kirk, and then he started the conversation. He told me to talk to my parents and Lynn. So I talked to my parents and then they decided to talk to Lynn. After that, Lynn got input and counsel from several others and then talked to Tashi directly. Then after all of that was sorted out, then and only then was the ball placed back into my court, and we met for the first time to discuss our relationship. Multitude of counselors proved to grant me much wisdom, safety and victory!

Principle 3: Make God your delight, and He will create in you new desires and satisfy your every need as He fulfills His purposes, according to His grace and good pleasure.
Principle 4: No Fear.

Principle 5: Wisdom and blessing in submission to spiritual authority

Principle 6: WAIT on the LORD:

As you read this, keep in mind the Biblical principles above and how God worked in those ways. It is only in looking back that I can understand all of this, because "during" the experience of life we often don't notice how God is there, but He is there and is working things together for good, for those who love Him, and for the called according to His purposes. Ok, so the long but not too long version of how we came to be engaged. I met Tashi in 2005 at Deaf camp right before she went to college in Indiana, and then I saw her one time in the summer of 2006 when I interned at CCCD in Jamaica. But, we simply knew the other's name and who they were, nothing more. 

[I clearly remember requesting a picture with Tashi at her home church (Deaf Bible Church) in St Elizabeth in July of '06, although Tashi does not remember me being there nor taking this picture]

She graduated in '09 and then moved back to Jamaica and took a job with JAD (Jamaica Association for the Deaf) in Kingston. Last spring, 4 years after we had last seen each other, she started volunteering and tutoring at my school in Kingston. One Saturday afternoon she came by to tutor but hadn't been told that school was closed for the weekend. She stayed to talk with a few of us, there were 2 other teachers and myself, for ten or fifteen minutes and then she left. During that brief conversation, something happened and I was struck by how attentive the other two teachers were to her. she did not even work here but they were very glued to what she was saying, and it simply impressed me how Tashi sat there and communicated with them, how she carried herself with confidence, modesty, humility and clarity. Randomly I had a brief thought of "if i could ever marry a deaf woman it'd be Tashi" and then i was like, "what, did you honestly just think that?"  One reason I was frustrated for having that thought was because in January God had laid it on my heart to begin praying about marriage and preparing for it. I desired to take this very seriously, but that thought I had seemed to indicate I was not taking this seriously, sometimes we are our own worst enemy and critic. I didn't want to be flippant in a prayerful pursuit of a helpmate, I wanted to be diligent and sincere. I was praying for a woman of faith and vision who had a heart of prayer. Surely Tashi could not be that person. You see, I had no desire to marry a Deaf person, let alone a Deaf Jamaican. Although i have some very close Deaf Jamaican friends, i felt it would be impossible to co-exist with one. I tried to blow off that random thought, but a couple days later i could not shake the idea and picture in my head and so i emailed (word for word below) an accountability partner of mine (he is a missionary in a cross-cultural marriage) and said: 
"one development i'd like you to keep tabs on me with is something from saturday. Tashi Bent, a graduate of the school down here, went to taylor university in indiana and lived there with a Leo family. she went to the AC church while she was in school. i've known her since deaf camp in 2005, and we've been friends but never really seen each other much. i've never really thought anything of it all, but she came by saturday to tutor some of our students and a few of us were chatting and i just had this random thought of,"if i could ever marry a deaf girl i think Tashi could be it." she is brilliant, has an awesome heart, good family, and wants to minister to the Deaf. i've never really given the idea of marrying into Deaf culture much thought, because i guess its just not what i want. pray for me that if God wants my heart to soften to that idea, that i would be obedient. i'm not excited about the idea, and even though tashi is an awesome girl i'm not really interested in her, its just something random that ran through my mind and now has me wondering."
His response was "About Tashi…well don’t tease yourself.  I would encourage you to offer this one up to the Lord right away.  I had a similar thought about my wife when I was here in the summer of 2008.  I wish I had listened and prayed more closely about how the Lord was speaking to me at that point in my life.  Instead, I went home and pursued the relationship that I wanted to happen.  It resulted in me being let down by a girl when I went to ask her to court.  I learned much through it, but I kinda wonder how things may have gone different if I had taken seriously the thoughts that the Lord put on my heart… ultimately I believe it was my doubt about being in missions full time that caused me to not take it seriously…I would encourage you to seek out what you really desire in a helpmate and put that together with your long term ministry plans."
I was a bit surprised at his advice, but felt like I should at least heed his advice and pray about it and i replied "keep checking on me with tashi. i really don't think its ever going to be anything more than an idea, but, you are right, i need to commit it to prayer." ...Needless to say it became more than an idea. It is now the complete desire of my heart! 

The end of april I found out her father was terminally ill with cancer, so i asked her for prayer requests. She agreed and gave me the following prayer requests that I sent to the Leo church:
- pray that my father can have a little more time with the family, that the pain would subside and that his mind would become more coherent so that he knows his family and where he is at (the cancer was in his brain, therefore caused him to change personality's, mood, and many other things)
- pray for me, I desire to be strong in the Lord during this time, I am very close to my father but know that I need to be strong for mom and Jordan (her younger brother who was in denial that his father was terminally ill)
- pray that the questions of "why" would be dismissed and that rather we would focus on God's purpose through this trial
- pray that we would feel the Lord's nearness and trust in His provision

I was struck by this list and recognized that her faith was not surface level. I began praying a bit more for her and also for her family. I hadn't seen her since that day in early april, but i kept feeling the need to pray about her. As the burden grew, I told God that if this was really what He was doing, then it was important to me to have an opportunity to meet her father before he passed away. I felt this was a pretty good "fleece" to put out there, knowing it would only be God that would open this door, as she lives 2.5 hours from Kingston, and 45 minutes from MV, so essentially if i were to meet her dad it'd be going to a place i'd never been. A few days later out of the blue she invited me to go to a community forum on deaf rights/awareness that JAD (where she works) hosts at the YMCA. {Later she told me that God had laid me on her heart two months before this, in March, but she was not interested in a hearing person, nor really an american so she did not give me a second thought. However, as God softened her heart, she wanted to first see how I, as a hearing American, would fit in with her culture. So hence the invite to the forum). Unfortunately, I had a team that week and was unable to attend. She said that was fine, and if I was free, they had another one the following friday. Teams always come saturday to saturday, but coincidentally the team that week flew out on Friday morning, so I was free and on May 21st I went to the forum at the Y. I enjoyed the evening and from Tashi's perspective, she started opening up to the thought of me because she noticed that I seemed to fit in well with her culture as a Deaf Jamaican. We talked briefly after the forum and she said she was going home to spend time with her mom and dad. I was going to MV, which is on the way to her home, and so I offered a ride to her and her friend Nicola. I've always believed that faith is a gift and we rely on God to add the increase and direction, but that we can't just sit on our butts and expect to go somewhere. We  have to ask, seek, and knock. We have to be willing to fall and fail, yet trust that HIS hand is there to guide and sustain us. That's why I offered her a ride, because it made sense that I take her 3/4 the way home, but perhaps along the way it'd happen that I'd meet her dad. Saturday morning I picked up her and her friend, Nicola. We traveled up to MV and as we got near it started raining. I honestly felt bad about dropping them off at a taxi stop in the rain, and there hometown is only 35-40 minutes past where I was going, and I had nothing to do so I offered them the option of me taking them to St. Elizabeth (their home). I didn't want to force myself into her home to meet her dad and claim it as answered prayer, but I wanted to keep taking steps of faith and see what God would do. They appreciated the offer and said that if I didn't mind, they would like to go straight home. So, I just replied, "ok, tell me where to drive." I thought maybe they'd just have me drop them off near their home or something, but at least I was knocking on the door and creating an opportunity to meet her dad. They gave me directions and then told me to stop. This was Nicola's home. We said goodbye to her and started driving again. As we were driving Tashi suggested, "you've been driving for a while and its almost lunch time, when we get to my house you should take a little break and get something to eat." I accepted and anxiously kept driving. We pulled up to her house and as we walked up to the porch, her dad was sitting there with her mom. She introduced me and immediately went into servant mode, asking her dad if he had taken his medicine, if he was eating properly, and she propped up his feet on a stool to keep the swelling down in his ankles/feet. I was impressed by this. Well, what I thought would be a quick stop to eat a sandwich turned into me spending the entire rest of the day at her house. It felt completely natural to be there. I chatted with her parents, with her brother and cousin, we made some banana fritters together (i realized i even enjoyed being in the kitchen with her), some of us played some games (i found out she was very competitive and fiesty, which i liked ;), and then later i got a chance to sit alone with her dad on the front porch and eat some mango and talk for a bit. He didn't stay awake for long, and there was a communication barrier between us, but in a way that i could only experience, i felt like i connected with him. Anyways, around dusk at 6pm i finally left....driving back to Mandeville my head was spinning, i was kinda shaking and saying "God what are you doing? Less than two weeks after asking for an opportunity to meet her father I spend an entire afternoon with her family." 

A couple days later I was reading in John 5:5-9, the story of the lame man and this is what I wrote down in my study notes:
Imagine waiting for healing from being an invalid for 38 years! How could you go on living? this man must have had incredible perseverance and an unshakable attitude. And not only did he wait so long, but he would TRY to get to the water but someone would make it in before him. Jesus asks him if he wants to be healed. He doesn't directly say yes, but shows Jesus that he has made efforts to do so, just they have not been successful. Sometimes I think Jesus wants the same from us. Don't just tell him what we want but show that we have made efforts. How does that apply to my life? I am pursuing open doors in getting to know Tashi and her family. I desire marriage. Is Jesus asking me to show evidence that I am willing to try, but yet recognize that I RELY on HIS provision and healing? What will happen with this, will Jesus say, rise up and take Tashi as your wife? I don't know. I don't know where to start. It is on my heart to talk to Kirk, but maybe tomorrow will be the best chance to do that on the way to MoBay. 

At this point I had emailed with my buddy John and another friend, but had not talked to anyone in person about what was going on in my heart. I felt like I needed to do that, and Kirk Plattner, my teammate and I were going to travel together the following day. So I prayed for a chance to talk to him. I was so scared though and nervous that I couldn't figure out how to bring this up. Thankfully, God is bigger than that so he had Kirk start quizzing me. Its funny, because Kirk and I had never talked about this kinda thing. He starts asking me about relationships and if there is anyone I am praying about or see as a possibility. So I said, "well, you may not believe this but actually yeah..." and I told him what had happened in the last few weeks. He took it in stride and did not seem concerned about it, but rather encouraged me with what he knew of her (he had been at Leo the same time she was there) and he told me she had actually shared her testimony with the Leo church the previous summer. He gave me a link to download the recording from their website, so I listened to it later. I was again, impressed, particularly when she shared about her experience during her 3rd year of college when her faith really moved from being something she knew in her head to something she felt and lived by in her heart. In my study notes the following day I wrote: 

Looking up earlier in John 5 where it spoke of the man having to put forth effort, yet relying on God to provide the increase... Lord you have provided in a distinct way with the questions Kirk threw out to begin the conversation on the way to MB when I was too hesitant / uncertain to begin it myself. I will continue to make efforts, and simply rely on you to provide the increase. I believe I am getting to know Tashi's heart.

Honestly, after this I was ready to take another step. I mean, if she was an AC girl I was confident enough at that point I would have wanted to take another step (if you are reading this and don't understand the last sentence, don't worry, most people don't...we can talk about it some other time). I was at peace and felt confident that God had been the source of my heart's desires. But, Kirk encouraged me to talk to my parents, get their input and also to talk to Lynn Stieglitz, the elder at Leo. It made a lot of sense to talk to Lynn because he already had a relationship with Tashi and knew who I was, and he is also very open minded and willing to work outside of the box or what is a typical AC situation. I went home in July/August and talked to mom and dad. Mom was initially very supportive and felt like God had been preparing her for this, but Dad's analytical mind really saw a lot of short-circuits in the motherboard and didn't see how this could possibly be what God was doing. His words were "we have grave concerns" and he listed several, all of which made sense. I simply replied that I had already thought through all the barriers (communication, language, culture, background, church, future family/location/vocation, etc) and knew that it was crazy, but that God had continually answered prayers and opened doors. I felt that if I were unwilling to take another step faith then I would be disobeying. 
I talked to a close friend about the struggles my parents were having, and he offered very wise counsel. He asked simply, "Blake, do you trust your parents' relationship with God?" Umm, yes, i did. "Do you have confidence in their ability to discern this spiritually?" Umm, yes, I did. "Ok, so then let your parents work through it and be patient, and trust that if God wants this to happen then He will work in them." It was really hard for me to let go of that at the time, but once I did I realized it was a huge release. The pressure wasn't on me. I let go and let God. On the way to the airport August 31st I told mom and dad that I would just wait for them. I asked them to keep praying and searching, and if/when they were ready I wanted to talk to Lynn Stieglitz. A couple months later, in October, they were at the point where God had not told them no. They did not feel at peace like I did or have any affirmation, but they felt talking to Lynn was what they needed to do. So they met with Lynn. He encouraged them to study Numbers 12 to learn more about God's perspective on inter-racial / cross-cultural marraige (which God approves of). He talked to the Schrenk family, whom Tashi lived with while in college. In their conversation they shared with Lynn that Tashi had contacted them in mid-september to seek their input, as she felt God was leading her towards me and she was developing feelings for me and had a burden to pray for me. Lynn kept my parents and Schrenks in the loop, so they all realized that Tashi and I had both expressed feelings for the other, but it wasn't until the end of October that Lynn contacted Tashi. She prayed about it a lot for a few days and talked with Lynn, and then on Nov 3rd Lynn told me that I should "begin a dialog with Tashi." That's all I knew. I called mom and dad, and they knew that Tashi also had expressed she felt called to me, but they wanted me to hear it first from her, so they just said they supported me contacting her. The next day, on Nov 4, I emailed her. Read below word for word our first convo.


Not really sure where to start. Honestly I'm not a huge fan of starting this with an e-mail or written communication, I'd much rather talk in person, but given the situation I figured this conversation has to start at some point.

Granted, I'm certain you have a lot of questions, as do I. Where do we start? To be candid, I don't have a good answer or a strong opinion on that. I'm anxious to hear what God has been doing in your heart and where you are at, with life and with what Lynn has shared with you. Which, speaking of Lynn, I actually don't know what all he has shared with you. All I know is that he has emailed with you about what's been on my heart (although I don't know what all he told you) and that he has encouraged me to begin a dialog with you.

I could go on a diatribe about how I've arrived at this point, but I'm not sure its necessary to, at least not initially. What I do want you to know from the very beginning, is that I admire you and esteem you highly. You are first and foremost my sister in Christ, and a friend that has blessed my life. Your love for God and people is as evident to me as is the sun on a hot, cloudless day in Jamaica. I am more than confident of the Holy Spirit dwelling within you which has allowed me to move forward in faith, because I know that He is in both us, and He is faithful to those that are His in leading us according to His good will and pleasure. I have sought to put my trust in Him from the first time I felt Him speak to me and lay a burden to pray for you on my heart (back in April). I have wrestled with it, I have struggled, I have worried and fretted, I have prayed, I have thought a lot, I have fasted, I've sought counsel from men and women of faith, I've tried my best to be patient, I've searched the Word and sought to allow it to speak to me, I've waited and to the extent I'm able, I have tried to surrender it to the Lord and commit it to His most faithful care. And so now I'm here, e-mailing you, without a direct question but an anxious curiosity. I don't know exactly what all this means, which has been hard to express to others. In faith, I believe God has led me to this point of asking for your prayerful consideration of entering into some type of relationship(call it what you will). 

So, in an effort to be concise, that is where I'm at. God has brought me to a calm reassurance that He is with me, leading me every step of the way. He is my hope in all of this. I am not saying that I can claim "I know God has said its His will that we get married." What I can put my faith and confidence in, though, is that God has brought me to this point for a purpose. That purpose, I believe, is to find a helpmate in life here on earth. However, I am not naive to the reality that God often works in mysterious ways, and that  the journey He has brought me on and our relationship moving forward could be a for a purpose in which He molds and shapes each of us, without bringing us together in marriage. The only way I know to find out is to take it one step at a time, one day at a time, constantly seeking His face. My devotion this morning was founded on James 4:8 Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. My commitment to you before the Lord, is that;

 I will, with all that is in me, seek to honor and glorify Him in obedience, while also striving to do what is best for you. 

My biggest fear in all of this is the possibility of hurt to you or both of us (and other friends and family who may become invested), and result in damage to our friendship. However, my confidence is that if Christ is our focus, the Word is our foundation, the Holy Spirit is our guide, and our trust is in the love of an eternal Father, that regardless of outcome, He will be glorified and that our relationship will be stronger than it is today. 

That said, it is my belief that no Christian relationship should be entered into without mutual understanding that the intended outcome is holy marriage to the glory of God. Therefore, I clearly want you to know that this is my heart's intent.

I look forward to hearing from you. Take as long as you need to get back to me, and please know I am open to your opinion as to how to move forward. I have no "template" to follow in this, no experience to speak from, simply obedience to where He leads.

Although I don't ask you to respond right away, I would appreciate a simple note back informing me that you've read this message. I know my nerves, and I will be anxious.

Psa 27:14  Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD! 

Trusting Him,


She responded 34 minutes later with:


I am writing this note to notify you that your email has been read. I shall reply more appropriately later, but I also want you to know that the feeling is mutual. And amazingly, I have also been cleaving to Psalm 27:14, and Psalm 143:10, where you are concerned.

Thank you for sharing your heart.

Writing more later,

Then 3 hours later, after time to think and pray and process, she wrote:


First off, I truly am very pleased with you adopting an initiative in approaching me about this. One of the expectations I seek from a man who is interested in me entails the ability to lead so I can follow. So thank you for initiating..... And I completely admire your faith and reliance on Christ.

Ummm..... After thinking and debating how best to convey my heart regarding this, I decided that it would be better to discuss this with you in person. I plan to be in Mandeville next week for the Bible study. As was the last time, I will be staying the weekend at the Campbells' home. We can talk either sometime during that weekend or another time most convenient to you.

However, please acknowledge that I likewise have wrestled, grappled, prayed and prayed, sought advice and prayers with/from my Bent family, my Schrenk family, my spiritual mentor and trusted friends. I also have been trying to be patient for God's will to be made clear about where you will fit in my life. Psalm 27:14, Psalm 143:10, Romans 12:2 and Jeremiah 29:11-13 are some scriptures that I have been holding close to my heart as I constantly pray to God for His will.

I thoroughly appreciate your frankness, vulnerability and humility in disclosing your heart and intent with me. As I have stated earlier, the feeling is mutual. Furthermore, I want you to recognize that I have been praying more earnestly about this since May; However, I for some reason felt a "sense of connection" with you around the time I was trying to fingerspell "tutor" to you when you were standing way far across from me, assumedly on your way to a vehicle leaving for the airport to pick up a work team, after asking what I was doing at the Kingston campus. Interesting how God works in the hearts of His children.....

Like I mentioned in my email to Lynn, I wholeheartedly appreciate you desiring God's will above your own because I desire His will above mine too, and I admire you so much more now because you have done the right thing by initially consulting with your parents, trusted friends and Lynn himself. I also told him that I feel very peaceful and confident about the possibility of you and I walking into a relationship that ultimately leads to marriage despite the concerns I have. I share your belief that the ultimate purpose for walking into a Christian relationship is/should be marriage, one that is God's will and honouring to Him.

With everything said, I believe that God has been at work in our hearts- the timing and the circumstances make a whole lot more sense now than ever. I will explain the circumstances, as well as the concerns that I have, when we meet in person. Please let me know when you would like to meet. Once we have met, we can decide where to go from there.

Proverbs 3:5-6,

Praying about me since May?!?! First felt something in March? II was shocked when I read that. I had started praying for her in April and thought there was no way she would have been interested in me at that time, we were simply friends and hardly knew each other. We agreed to meet in person a week later to discuss. So on Nov 12 (attached is the pic from this night, some say it looks like I stuck her with the bill, but believe me, I didn't...) we met for the first time to talk about "us", and even though I went into that evening with a list of 15 reasons/barriers to entering into a relationship, God absolutely took care of all of our worries/concerns, and after that night I was fully committed to her and had no doubts whatsoever that this is what God had prepared each of us for and called us to. 

The following day we drove to her mom's home in the country to seek her blessing on our relationship, which she did with joy and love.

Since then its been a long yet fast 4 months of being "engaged" but not publicly as Lynn, with good reason, wanted to wait until after her baptism (which was Feb 19/20th). I've been learning a lot about life, love and the Lord, and looking forward to seeing what happens next! We are getting married July 24th, in Jamaica, and will have a reception in Leo on August 7th (tentatively). Thanks for your prayers and support. To God be the glory, its all His doing, I'm simply thankful.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


RUF from University of South Florida

Ok, so we did more than just goof off all week, but there were plenty of laughs and jokes and shenanigans...this started as an innocent toss but turned into gut-splitting hilarity. I really am mature...


 oh boy...

 #4 barely made it in!
 Erica getting in on the action, i called her Cookie cuz she reminded me of my sister in law, Brooke.
 Philip's attempt..
Ninja warned, it can get vicious!

 View of Kingston and the port from Red Hills area

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Grand Valley State University and Sports Day

Quite frequently heading into a team week, I get nervous and full of anxiety and wonder how we are going to make it through the week. God always provides. Often in ways I never expect and better than I could imagine. Occasionally I get blown away and simply fall in love with the people on the team. This was one of those weeks. I quickly felt at ease with the 7 of them (six students, one mom) and the protective walls came down. Not that mine are ever too high, but what does exist came down quickly, and I was just me. They came in on a Friday and left on a Friday, and were also here for Sports Day. Hence, it was an altogether messed up week, but in a really good way. The team loved on the kids, did a great job at getting outside their comfort bubble to learn sign,  and extended a lot of grace and love to me, personally. Thank you Lord for new friends!

Red House
Give them props for best sign!
Yellow house, about four of them looked
Flag got twisted...
Green house ready to run!
Clown competition
Green house thinks the performance was terrific!
Stephen (teacher/coach) is totally into this "shirt, shorts and socks" race
Anesa pulling ahead with getting her socks on first
Alex ran away with this one!
Proud coach and athlete!
Stephen celebrating (again) with a Usain Bolt pose while Adair does a dance :)
Rahim celebrates only half-way to the finish line, Shaquaine is just yelling with glee to run, and Daphawn is already starting to pout because he's in last place...oh the personalities of these kids...gotta love it!!!!
Photo finish as Michael takes 1st place for Green house ahead of Rushedie of Red house
Gilisa pulls to the line first for Red house
Richard and Sanjay give it all they got!
Gilisa loses her water in the "bucket of water on the head" race
Richard wants no part of Sadiki trying to tief the first place medal as Kimmarley watches the quarreling
Richard, Sadiki and Rushedie take the turn under control but at full speed
Daphawn and his just as cute sister
I loved seeing the love Daphawn has for his mom and sister...the impact of a loving family is evident!
Megan Smith (team leader) with her adopted niece, Antoinette
Brittney and her mom smiling sweetly
Relay race...intense!
Parent/family dude totally lost his balance and bit it!
Not gonna lie, I died laughing...
I was forced to run, and after almost falling on my face at the start...
...I managed to stay close and came in second behind Stephen and ahead of Jason
David and Kate's kids, Anesa, Alex and Brittney, all smiles after a fun day!
The students and team celebrating a day of competition and joy!

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