Meet the Jewkes family and hear about their personal journey, and what Bookcliff means to them.
Hello, my name is Sarah, and I’d like to tell you about my beautiful family. My husband, Keenan, is a navy veteran and a brainy mechanical engineer at CoorsTek. Keenan works hard and is a wonderful leader and provider for our family. Our eight year old son, Joshua, is a lively young man with a brilliant mind full of history and fun facts. He loves sports, reading and dressing up like historical figures from the past. Jerilynn, our six year old daughter, is a free spirited and encouraging little lady who loves art. She is creative and helpful and she loves quality time with her loved ones. I am a medical assistant for Primary Care Partners in pursuit of my Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. I enjoy spending time with family and friends and take much pride in caring for and helping support my family. Sounds picture perfect, right? Well, since we are a bunch of families intertwined through our children and school doing life together, I feel it’s only fair to have a little vulnerability and let you all know that where we are today and where we started are two very different places.
Growing up, Keenan and I didn’t have the blessing of knowing Jesus as our Lord. There was no (known) Savior in the midst of our dysfunction. As a result, I believe we learned to rely on people, experiences and substances to enjoy life. I jokingly tell people that we used to live like heathens. We started going to church in our mid-twenties when we moved to a small “Bible belt” town in eastern Tennessee. After being there a while we figured church would be the only way for us to meet people and make friends. Little did we know, this small act for the wrong reasons, would have a long lasting impact on our unknowingly chaotic lifestyle. I’d love to tell you that after going to church we had a quick and miraculous transformation – but that’s not the truth. God did however begin to convict us in individual ways and began to slowly prune away our unhealthy habits.
Over the past eight years, God has changed us in many ways – some of the changes came easy and in some cases He has had to break us like wild horses. God has healed our past traumas, he has helped us defeat lust, addictions, fears, and many other shortcomings and strongholds. He has taught us about grace and forgiveness. He has restored broken relationships and repaired our marriage. But best of all, he has cultivated a heathy environment for our children to grow, learn about Him and serve others.
I’ve said all that, to say this; Bookcliff Christian School has been a safe haven and a place of refuge for our children. We love this school – we love the teachers, the staff and the families! Not only are Joshua and Jerilynn receiving a quality education but they are learning about Jesus and how to be a light in this dark world. It is so reassuring to know that their faith is being supplemented at school. It gives us peace to know that the teachers love them, care about them and correct them tenderly instead of breaking their spirits. We continue to choose BCS year after year because we think of this opportunity as a gift to our children. By the grace of God they are experiencing a childhood and upbringing with Him at the center of all things – something that we didn’t have.
God is always correcting and convicting us in areas of change and growth that are necessary to carry out His will. Recently God has been telling me to give more of myself to BCS. After some debate, I am glad to confess this publically because now I have all of you reading this for accountability. We look forward to forming new friendships and meeting many new families this year. We extend a challenge to each of you to take a self-inventory and see what role God is calling you into at BCS. As parents, we all have a role, the hard part is figuring out what it is and carrying it out.
One last note before I end; from the outside many of us appear to “have it all together” but in reality we all have our hardships and struggles. My hope is that we will not put up walls of prejudice but instead put ourselves out there and form new and lasting connections with the people around us. If our kids are doing life together, why should it be any different for us? We are excited for a new school year and look forward to hearing the stories of other families. If you would like to know more about our story – how we found God, why we love BCS – the coffee’s always on at the Jewkes household.
Thank you to the Jewkes for sharing their story! A special thank you to Sarah for her commitment to contribute and connect with Bookcliff families. She hit the ground running, by organizing our Back 2 School Ice-cream Social!