Can I just say, I had no idea what God had in store when I agreed to move to Alaska…
I knew I was coming here to teach, mentor, and disciple somewhere between 5 to 10 Native Alaskan teenagers and young adults. I knew I would live with my girls and “mom the daylights outta ‘em” just as I’ve done with about every student I’ve ever had. And after many nights of freaking out and anxiously crying to my roommates in Denver, I knew I would love them (and hoped that they would learn to love me too…).
Now, let’s go over a few of the things I didn’t know I was in for: I didn’t know I would move here, end up in ground school with one of my students, and fall in love with flying. I didn’t know I would learn to love bush life more than city life. I had no idea the depths of loneliness that come with bush life, and conversely, the depth of relationship with God that occurs when you have nothing to distract your heart and mind. I didn’t know I would learn to butcher moose, end up volunteering in the local K-12 school, or that the Lord would transform my ministry from working exclusively with my Native TLC students to becoming a co-leader for both the Lake Clark Bible Church (LCBC) Cambodia teen mission team and the Outfitters for Christ (OFC) Thailand missions team. (Try saying that 5 times fast…Woof.)
But here I am—being called into what seems like the wildest season of God’s plan for my life yet… (Funny how He somehow one-upped Himself after moving me to a village.)
On June 8th, I plan to board a plane with 13 LCBC high schoolers and we’ll be off for a whirlwind two weeks of teaching and sharing the Gospel in the predominately Buddhist, post-Khmer Rouge terrorized country of Cambodia. Our mission while in Cambodia will be to support local missionaries who have established churches, Christian schools, and orphanages in the last twenty years to bring the hope of Jesus to Cambodia. Our team will specifically be sharing the gospel while teaching English to school-age children and teenagers in both Christian and public schools. (For many, knowing English can be a skill that will later transform their lives, as English is rapidly becoming the trade language of most of Southeast Asia.)
On June 22nd, I’ll bid my LCBC teens farewell and board a plane to Thailand where I’ll meet up with a team of fellow Coloradoans—a beautiful mixture of Denver Street School alumni and Outfitters for Christ interns that I’ve had the honor to work with and disciple over the last few summers. Similar to what I’ll be doing in Cambodia, our DSS/OFC team will be teaching English in local orphanages, leading short vacation Bible schools for kiddos in smaller towns, and just generally serving the long-term “boots on the ground” missionaries that we are partnering with in whatever ways they need most.
My personal heart within the two larger missions for the month is simply to love on the people God places in front of me—fellow weary missionaries, house-moms, students, and orphans alike. After having served in a live-in ministry and discipleship setting for the last year here at TLC, I understand the need for a listening ear, a warm cup of tea, and a hug on a new level– and that is what I hope to provide for those in need of such a personal touch of Jesus’ love.
In addition to listening and loving, I’m excited to see how the Lord will transform the lives of the young people I’ve fallen in love with over the last several years—both here in Alaska and back in Colorado— as He pushes them to new depths of relationship with Himself, outside of their comfort zones and familiar settings.
I’ve been so richly blessed by your prayers and support as I’ve lived out Jesus’ calling on my life this year in Alaska. If I’m being honest, I’ve felt so overwhelmed by your generosity that I couldn’t imagine asking more of you, my wonderful community. But as I step out in faith, deeply knowing that the Lord is calling me to Southeast Asia for the month of June, I’m asking you to consider partnering with me, yet again, in this amazing opportunity to take the gospel to the ends of the earth. I need to raise a mere $800 per trip ($1,600 total) to cover my in- (and inter-) country costs for the month of June.
Would you please consider partnering with Jesus and I as we raise up and disciple future leaders of the church here in Alaska, back in Colorado, and across Southeast Asia?
As always, thank you for your partnership in spreading the Good News of our Sweet Jesus.
Your grateful sister,
If you’re interested in partnering with me as I head to Cambodia with some of my favorite Alaskan teens, donations can be made through Lake Clark Bible Church’s website and simply earmarked Cambodia – Leyba.
If you’re interested in partnering with me as I head to Thailand with my DSS alumni and OFC interns, donations can be made on the Outfitters for Christ website and earmarked Thailand – Leyba.
[If you have any questions about my work here in Alaska, or about either of these upcoming trips, I would love to talk to you! My e-mail is KacyLouLeyba@gmail.com; I’m generally fairly quick in response. (Unless our internet is out because of weather or other weird village flukes.)]
*All donations made through either website and earmarked appropriately will go directly to the support of our missions trips and will be receipted as tax-deductible for the 2016 tax year.
Current prayer requests as I head into this wild season with Jesus:
Please join me as I pray…
- That both the LCBC teen missions team and our OFC team will be so enthralled with who Jesus is and what He has done for us that it overflows in the team unity and strength that can only be found in Him.
- For a heart for God’s people, regardless of nationality, race, age, or geographic location, to be developed within my students.
- That we will be able to create effective English lessons for kiddos ages 3 to 18 with love and energy.
- That our teams will have strength and endurance through hot weather and long days of teaching (and within the hours of Alaskan/Cambodia Coloradoan/Thai teen bonding time in the evenings).
- For all of the details (passports, visas, inter-state communication as the OFC team and I plan/train together long-distance) to come together, as I know only Jesus could do.