…because apparently it’s way too much to expect me to post during the summer…
Trip #1. Philadelphia. Grad School! (Hopefully, the BuildaBridge Institute will get its own post soon, with a little more reflection & detail). I spent 12 hours per day in classes and workshops about the arts, spirituality, psychology, international relief, community development, and education. I danced like a hippo, a giraffe, an African warrior, and a three-toed sloth. (That’s saying something, because I generally don’t dance). I drew pictures, painted flowerpots, learned and absorbed a ton of new ideas, met people from all over the world, and studied hard!
One day “off” in between. Youth Sunday! Our students did an amazing job. They led the music, the preaching, the praying, the ushering, the greeting, and the children’s sermon.
Trip #2. Houston. Middle School Mission Trip! We worked with the Center for Student Missions (CSM), and had an amazing time. One change that CSM has made throughout their organization is that each group is assigned to an “anchor site,” where they serve daily, in addition to the other service and educational activities. We had wonderful food and fantastic hosts, and our students learned/experienced a ton of new things.
One week “off.” Vacation Bible School. And grad school. That week was a blur. I think I wrote five papers. And learned some VBS songs. And did laundry. And packed for…
Trip #3. Chicago. High School Mission Trip! Also with the Center for Student Missions, we had the misfortune to be in Chicago during their hottest week since 1946. Without air conditioning. Our students sweated and suffered through the week, but they did an awesome job leading Bible School in a homeless shelter there. Another group worked with a day camp for at-risk youth. And we celebrated the 4th of July on the El, along the Magnificent Mile, at the Navy Pier, and at the Lincoln Park Zoo. And at the end of the day we plopped down next to the refreshingly cold Lake Michigan to watch two sets of magnificent fireworks.
Trip #5. Minden. Camp. Although not technically a week off, Caney provided a chance for me to catch my breath and care for my own soul. And while I was away, Jordan got a job!
3 Days off. Inhale. Exhale. Go to staff meeting. Lead a prayer tour for our high schoolers.
Trip #6. Dallas. Anniversary! Jordan and I celebrated our fourth anniversary!! We headed to Dallas for a quick, wonderful trip. We went rock-climbing at a gym there, saw The Dark Knight Rises and ate lunch at a theater/restaurant combo, and met up with some friends who live in Dallas.
A few days off. Back in town. Final projects. Weekend of the Cross. Hanging with my amazing intern. The Olympics. The end of summer youth group. Good-byes to the new college freshmen. Hellos to the incoming sixth graders. Abundant sunshine and heat. Lots of prayer, lots of planning. Meetings. Making bulletin boards with Jordan. Cleaning. Finding new treasures hidden away in the youth wing closets. And finally…Promotion Sunday!