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Only God


“Only God”. These words sum up for me this past school year.

It was “Only God” that I found myself teaching in Boston. Last Spring as I was preparing to get married and move to Boston, a common question I received was “where would I be working in the Fall?” An innocent, well meaning question reminded me again and again that I had absolutely no idea where I would be teaching the following the year. Between moving, wrapping up a busy school year, long- distance travel to visit my fiance, I barely had time to plan a wedding. I was extremely busy and I did not have the time to job search. I only managed to submit one or two job applications.

One particular day, when my wonderful fiance suggested I spend the evening filling out job applications, I became overwhelmed by all I had to do. I spent time on my knees that evening crying out to God. There were so many unknowns about the future and I did not have the time or resources on my own. How desperately I needed God. I choose to trust Him in the midst of the unknowns.

A couple weeks later, a friend passed along some information about a school located right in Boston. I researched the school and was very impressed. I quickly filled out the application and sent in my resume.  The school contacted me for an interview the weekend I just happened to be up in Boston. My original trip had been postponed. Only God.

I left the interview feeling extremely confident that this was the exact school where God was calling me to teach. I was confident that I had interviewed well and that the administration was interested in me. However my true confidence was in the deep sense of calling I felt from God. As the days and weeks passed, I waited in confidence that God has called me to this particular school. I chose not to doubt or waver in the waiting time. Three weeks later, I received the phone call offering me the teaching position for second grade. Stephen was excited and thrilled. I was a little surprised that my reaction was so calm until I realized God had shown me this was what He had for me. I had already known for weeks now.

I went in the next day to sign my contract. While we were there, we found out about an apartment for rent. In a matter of only a few days, I had a job and we had a place to live. “Only God.”

The school year started all too soon. Shortly after our honeymoon, I was in meetings and working to prepare for the new school year. Parent Orientation came all too quickly. I barely had time to get my classroom ready. Then there was Student Orientation. I personally was not at all ready for the school year to start. Our home was full of boxes and empty of furniture. Yet, the first day of school went smoothly. I breathed a sigh of relief until that evening I found out the shocking news that my cousin Joshua had died unexpectedly. 

Overwhelmed by grief and sorrow. Overwhelmed by all the sudden changes in my life. Overwhelmed by feeling very much like a “new teacher.” Overwhelmed by life. How did I made it through it all? Only God.

I had previously taught for eight years in the same school. I knew that there would be adjustments moving to a new school. Yet, I really had no idea just how very different the two schools would be and how I would need to constantly adjust and adapt. I went from teaching in a large public school to teaching in a small private school. My experience in teaching in a Title One school was challenging, difficult, yet rewarding. I found myself teaching in a very rich, powerful area of Boston. I quickly discovered the unique challenges of teaching in this kind of setting.

The school year held some very unexpected challenges. One particular challenge was when the school was flooded due to a burst pipe. It was then that I experienced the resiliency of Bostonians. We did not miss a single day of school. For two weeks, we walked the students a mile to a church each morning, taught the kids with limited supplies, and walked the students a mile back each afternoon. This was in bitter cold temperatures. I quickly realized that my winter coat was not a true winter coat. I was miserable and cold. When I came back from Christmas Break with a new, long down jacket I was finally prepared for Boston’s winter.

As any teacher knows, even one challenging student can drastically change your school year. How did I deal with the unexpected challenges? Only God.

This last semester was refreshingly joyful. I had made it through the challenges, Spring finally came to Boston, and I was able to enjoy my class of second graders. As the year wraps up, I am so grateful for my students and their families. I am grateful for an incredible team and for their support this year. I am grateful for how God called me to this job. I am grateful for this school year. I am grateful His provision. Only God.


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Faith Reflections!


2013. What a year. There were so many wonderful memories, huge life changes, and exciting moments.

I felt God prompting me to look at this past year with a different view.

My child, you walked by faith into this past year. As you reflect back upon the year, see it through the lens of faith“And without faith it is impossible to please God, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

God is amazed when we act in faith. Why is faith so difficult? For me it means letting go of control. This is a very hard thing to do. I want to know what lies ahead. I want everything to be neatly in order. I want things to go my way.

Walking by faith is in complete contrast to having control. Faith calls for dependence on God. It requires a sense of humility. To cry out to God and admit your desperate need of Him.

As I entered 2013, God gave me insight that Stephen was my future husband. Since we had only been dating a couple months, I did not broadcast this news to others. Instead I spent time quietly journaling, praying, and fasting about this life-changing fact.

When I thought about the possibilities for the coming year, it felt absolutely crazy. Really God! How would all this unfold? The thought of planning a wedding sounded overwhelming. Moving to a new city sounded scary. I questioned if I would ever find a job. Could all of these life changes take place in such a short span of time?

Yet as I prayed and looked to God my perspective changed. I knew without a doubt that God had brought Stephen and I together. God had written our story and I was simply watching Him unfold it.

So I choose to walk into this new year by faith. Faith in who my God is. He is good. He is loving. He is in control. There is absolutely nothing impossible for Him.

I had little choice but to give up my control. I was desperate for Him. The song “Lord I need you” became my heart’s cry.

Living by faith is a beautiful and exciting invitation be a part of God’s story. His story is far beyond anything we could ever think, dream, or imagine.

Faith requires trusting God. One step at a time. There is no doubt everything is because of Him. All glory, credit, honor goes to God.

There are numerous stories I could share from this past year of living by faith. Stories of how God showed up in profound, mighty, and surprising ways. Some of the highlights include…

Amazing engagement story

Moving to Boston. A great story for another time of how God provided in an unexpected way. He truly cares about the details of our lives.

Absolutely beautiful wedding day. I did not have time to plan a wedding in four short months. I was frantically busy with working, moving, wedding showers, and traveling every other weekend to visit Stephen. Nevertheless God was at work and our wedding was beyond anything I could have imagined. I loved every moment of our special day.

Teaching job. Although I did not have time to job search, God provided the perfect job in Boston before our wedding day.

Home by the ocean

When I reflect back upon this past year, all I can say is “Only God”.

Beginning this new year, I pray that I am aware of my desperate need of God. That I listen to His Spirit moving and speaking. That I choose to walk in faith, hand in hand with my husband.

In what area is God calling you to act in faith? What is holding you back? Reflect on who God is… there is nothing impossible for Him. Don’t miss out on the story He has written for you!

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One Year Ago

One year ago today my life changed forever.

I was still single. I had not yet met my husband.

I had spent the day watching Downton Abbey with my best friend as I recovered from a sinus lift surgery. Before I went to bed that night, I noticed an email from e-harmony. I logged in, expecting it would take a brief minute to check out the guy’s profile and quickly dismissed him.

God surprised me. The first thing I thought was… “I have seen this picture before!” A couple weeks earlier, a random profile picture had caught my eye… the contrast of this guy’s bright blue shirt against his brown skin, his genuine white smile, and the confidence he portrayed made for a striking photo.

As I read through his profile, I was amazed by all that we had in common. We shared a passion for God, a love for people, and an enjoyment of being active. And then there were random details like a love of gospel music. I was touched with how his profile was infused with a love for God.

As I read, God stirred my heart and reminded me of desires He had placed there years earlier. While many girls may have been nervous seeing the job status of pastor, my heart responded with a desire to support and love a man in ministry. A man from Africa. My heart had been captured with a love of Africa when I traveled there years earlier on a missions trip.

Only God. Only God could have so designed my husband and I to be a perfect fit for one another. Only God could have brought us together through e-harmony. Only God could have spoken to my heart when I first read this guy’s profile. Only God could have given me insight that this may be the one He had for me.

One year ago, I was reading Stephen Nyakairu’s e-harmony profile. One year later, I am his wife. Happily married for over three months. Mrs. Nyakairu.

Only God in His perfect timing. Only God could have brought us together. A boy from Africa and a girl from New York. Only God could so dramatically change our lives in one short year. Only God.