Monday, June 29, 2009

small groups & stars

Today was great. I feel like every day here is great, even a day that is a ummmm, "not perfect day" is still totally wonderful. I am starting to see everyone here for how truly wonderful they are. Wow, 1 Peter 4:1-6 really spoke to me. More like the Holy Spirit spoke to me through those words. It is amazing how pride can fall away if you are just willing to wilidly love unconditionally. I am coming in to that. It is allowing me to love in a way that really serves my heart and place in this internship in a big way. Anyways I just wanted to share that all this personal time in small groups and inward reflection has really been super healthy for me. I am going to go look at some stars with a summer staff girl named Janice now. SMILES!


Friday, June 26, 2009


This is BO. Bo made my BLOG last year. If you go to June 13th of 2008, you will see him. BO really brings a lot of joy to me. Bo is also a part of YOUNG LIFE CAPERNAUM kids. You can ~CLICK HERE~ to learn more about what CAPERNAUM is all about. But basically this week was a camp full of kids with mental/physical disabilities. It is so amazing to be able to love and interact with these kids. I am impacted by their outlook on life greatly. They are so open to love and fun. I know all too often, I can be so closed off to experiencing things or even experiencing love from others. They are so honest too. So much joy comes out in me just seeing their disposition. It is so easy to love them because the love is recripricated so greatly. It is truly great training for loving people who are not so easy to love back. I made many friends this week, kids like J.R., Brent, Veronica (will be in a wheel chair the rest of her life but is never seen without a veyr infectious smile), and of course. . .JASEN!! This guy brought me so much joy. We just connected right away. His legs are very weak, and he has to wear leg braces, and he does not really speak. He can sort of speak, but he communicates mostly with pointing and hand motions/gestures. One night we played Ping Pong. It was me serving to Jasen, or Jasen serving himself, but that means he would just BLAST IT and I would run to pick it up and do it over again. He would laugh and smile and was just so overwhelmed with joy. I just felt like my joy tank was topped off every second I spent with him. Something so easy on my part really meant the world to him. The other thing that is seriously amazing is the leaders that come with them. Most of the kids, especially the ones who have higher levels of disability have to have a leader for each camper. The capernaum leaders are servants through and through. Christ shines in and around them in a very big way.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

heading back

So today I am BLOGGING very early because I had a very early start. This morning I am reminded of several things; firstly the worth of a good nights sleep is great in my book. And secomdly, I cannot ever, EVER thank my parents enough for all they do for me. Let's just take today, out of the bajallions of times they have put me before themselves. It was probably 3:30AM when we (yes both of my parents took me to the airport. . . even though my mom can't walk yet) stopped at Steak & Shake for some early morning grub. Then we continued to the Indianapolis International Airport where my flight will leave @ 6:37AM. I am BLOGGING from the concourse B and about to get on.

I am excited to get back to Lost Canyon so I can be with my peeps. I want Arizona heat back!!! Ta Ta INDIANA!


Sunday, June 21, 2009


Yes, Windy Gap is the name of the camp I just got back from. It was the camp I took my area Fort Wayne Young Life kids to in North Carolina. I have some pictures to share. I took many, many, many pictures. BUT, these were the ones I wanted to share the most. Check them out.Yes, that's right that is Nicky and he is smiling. We were just about ready to go out for WESTERN night, and he drew on that mustache on himself. Can you believe it?Here are some of the good'ole boys from my cabin.Here is Daniel. We had some really good times this week. I believe God is really working in his life in a big way. I was so proud to have him in my cabin, along with every single other guy that was in there. God just has his children in different places and at different walks in life. Here is the Fort Wayne YOUNG LIFE team of leaders and kids. I got closer to kids, some kids came to know Christ, but every single individual that I have ever spent time with knows that I want to be right next to them no matter where they are Spiritually. That I want to love them and be a part of their life right where they are at. This camp was beautiful, that's for darn sure. God did many, many amazing things this last week.

Saturday, June 13, 2009


The day has finally come. We are off and about 45 minutes into a 14 hour bus ride. Ohh yes, myself 6 leaders & a buss load of Young Life (& non-Young Life) kids are off to Windy Gap in North Carolina for the week. God is going to be very active and at work through the campers as well as the leaders. I am stoked! It is 1:15AM and my head lamp is bugging kids, so Ta Ta for now.

Friday, June 12, 2009

PETER & baseball

My friend Peter is in town. He has been in Korea for the past 4 years. We were so extremely close in High school and middle school, and elementary school. I love that guy and his younger brother Jacob. He had to go back to Korea to join the military (mandatory draft). But he is back in Fort Wayne staying with my best friend Jared for the month, so of course I had to see him. I really love this guy, and he brings me joy. He is stuck in drink up and enjoy the times life throws at you phase, but I know he knows Christ, and pray that it is only a matter of time until he see's the bigger picture and how important it is. But, I will just continue to love him and get his random phone calls from Korea once he goes back.I ended up taking Peter & Nicky (Nick will be going with me to North Carolina tomorrow with my Young Life guys, SO EXCITING!!) to the ball park. It was such a good time, even though baseball can get a little boring.

As I was chillen with him, I asked if he wanted to go to a Tin Caps (baseball) game. I had never been to one, he had never been to one, so I thought, "WHY THE HECK NOT?!"

I had an amazing hot dog, among other great ball park foods. It was super good to spend time with Nick and Peter. I am extremely fortunate I got to do this.
It was an amazing game towards the end. In the 3rd inning, the Tin Caps (Fort Wayne's team) tied it up 4-4. Right in the 10th inning, they scored after having 1 ball, 2 strikes, and 2 outs. The winning point brought in the last stand they needed, and the CROUD WENT CRAZY!! Then, to add a little icing to the cake, there was a great and very loud firework display. Peter didn't think it was that impressive, but it was real good.


"Thank you Lord for allowing me to have this experience with both Peter and Nick. You bless me so much, even though I am a sinful idiot who forgets way too quickly. I praise you for the GRACE you constantly show me. I love you, and you are the only true meaning in my life. You are my rock and my solid ground."

Thursday, June 11, 2009

God has a sense of humor

Today is the day I left camp to go home and take my area Young Life kids to a camp (Windy Gap) in North Carolina. I purposefully purchased tickets out of Flagstaff (only 40min away from Lost Canyon) because I knew it would be easy for someone from camp to get me there, and would not be a big burden. It just means taking a small duel prop plane from Flagstaff to Phoenix. What little did I know about these small planes though. They can be quite unpredictable when it comes to take off times. Because they are so small, they only fly when the conditions are right. Okay, back to my day (I am rewinding now). I start my day off by working with my guys for a half day at camp. It was hard to say goodbye to the people I had created relationships with over the past 3 weeks, but I did. I got my bag packed and then sat down to read in the Bible for a bit before it was time to go. I entered into a time of prayer, where I specifically said to God, "if you want me to be relational on this trip home, then I will do whatever you want me to, but if not, I really just want to read my book." It's funny though, because I never expected God to set something up for me, and I fully intended to read the book I wanted to read. I then got picked up by Mark Booth, the intern coordinator and he took me to Flagstaff so I could get on my plane. After 40 minutes or so of good conversation in the car, I arrived at the airport. The Flagstaff airport is a little hoe dunk airport that only has small duel prop airplanes fly in and out, mostly just to Phoenix (about a 35-45 minute flight). When I arrived, the sign said, "4:35PM flight to Phoenix DELAYED." I thought to myself, ohh great what now." As I waited in the line of people, the gentlemen announced that the plane would not be flying out today, and that they could get us out first thing tomorrow. I said, "Well I have a 6:50 connecting flight, how are you going to get me there?" He said, "you can try car pooling with some of the other passengers sir." I was about to get frustrated when all of a sudden, a really nice man walked up to me and asked what was going on. I explained that they just canceled the flight. He then told me that he was in town on business and would be happy to re-rent his vehicle from the rental agency and drive us both to Phoenix. I smiled and thanked him while agreeing to go with him. Just then I looked up with my eyes and said to God, "Okay, I get it, i'm sorry for being selfish" and looked forward to the drive.

The mans name was Billy and he was an extremely good guy.While I learned his story, I got the chance to tell him mine. It was pretty much a two hour trip of me sharing my testimony and talking about Young Life to this guy. It was really neat because through my story I kept telling him that, "Everything happens for a reason, and God is in control of it." Right as we pulled into the airport, I said it one last time. He said to me, "Ya know, a lot of people say that, but when you say it, I believe you." That simple phrase blessed the heck out of me and I know God set up that car trip.

I had to rush to get to my plane on time. I just hardly made it too. But I did, and silly me, I immideatly was back in the mind set of, "Ohh I can't wait to sit down and read this book." And again, God had different plans. As I approached my window seat, There was a middle aged woman who looked like she had been crying, and a teenager already sitting next to where I would take my place for the flight. I am ashamed to say it, but I thought to myself, "ohh I really hope this teenager isn't a jerk" and took my seat. Still half wanting to get my book out of my carry on, I sat down and introduced myself to the kid, I forgot his name (not because I didn't think he was important, but because I am forgetful). He ended up being an awesome kid with a huge heart. He has 2 sets of parents because of an early divorce in his life, and a half brother with down syndrome. The guy is a really great guy, who needed to do a lot of talking. And that is just what we did for the next 3 hours. He is on the right path, and is ever close to really entering into an awesome relationship with Christ, if not already there. I felt he was in a really good place. The woman was flying to Indiana to see her step-mom, she had tickets to go stay with her in the hospital, but on the day she was to fly out to see her (today), her step mother passed away without warning. She was extremely emotional, and only cared about drinking. I could tell she was a big drinker whether death was present or not. It made her cringe a bit when I talked with my 17 year old friend about my relationship with Christ. But, she never voiced any opinion either way. I told her I would pray for her, and she thanked me. I have been praying for her too. I had plans today to do what I wanted. I prayed that God use me however, but did not expect to be used in the slightest. I learned today that I must always expect to be used by God no matter my frame of mind or expectation level. I wonder how many times must I learn this lesson.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A different role in Young Life camp experiences

Okay, fist things first. I must tell about my day. At first glance, it appeared to me that not much was accomplished. Lost Canyon has 240 new tree's, and they all needed to have root growth stuff put on them. This is what my role was. Stand by the faucet, and pour the chemicals into a 5 gal bucket, and then fill it up with water. Then one of the ODC (Out Door Crew) guys would take it around to the tree's and put 1 gal of the stuff on each one. Then Ryan and I worked on the equipment and made sure everything had oil changed and was running real good. BLA, it just did not feel like much was done. 
BUT THEN. . . . . 

Ya see, today is referred to as "the day that never ends." There is so much fun and exciting things packed into the day. The kitchen explodes (shot gun blast & kitchen workers run out with flower all over), there is a tableau night, a carnival, everyone get's in the pool & hot tub with clothes and everything on, and a HUGE ALL CAMP DANCE PARTY; just to name a few. So, there is one sector of kids that only clean dishes. They are called, "the pits." They are a great bunch of individuals, but it is long hours doing nasty work. So, the ODC crew decided we would give the pitts the night off. Tonight is the western themed night with spaghetti. If you can imagine serving a full course meal to 430+ campers, well you can see there would be A LOT of dishes to be cleaned. 

I am sorry about the picture. There was no WiFi in the intern lounge, and so I had to go to the club room and use the MAC computer (a.k.a. piece of crap). So, I couldn't figure out how to rotate and save my picture. Anyways, the ODC boys and myself cleaned those dishes like they have never been cleaned before. We had a lot of fun too. And I got EXTREMELY dirty in the process. It was awesome, I am so glad we had the opportunity to serve the pitts crew in that way. :o) 

Now tomorrow I fly out of Flagstaff at 4:35P.M. to go back home. I will arrive in Indianapolis at 1:20AM and will get home around 3:30AM. I have my infusion at 10:00AM and then I have to make sure 2 of my Young Life guys are ready and packed for the trip. It will be amazing. We (myself and the other leaders) are taking our Fort Wayne Young Life kids to a camp in North Carolina called Windy Gap. It is going to be so amazing, and I am so completely pumped to be with my guys. I am STOKED to be leading a cabin of guys again. God is doing great things. Great things is what my God is doing. Praise be to Abba Father, who was and is and will always be the King of Kings! This post is going to show up as a Thursday Post, but really I am submitting it at 12:22AM, so although it is technically Thursday, it is FRIDAY in my book still. I will wake up at 7:30AM, work a half day, get off at noon (12:00PM) and pack and go to the airport. 


Tuesday, June 09, 2009

making steps

Here is my group of guys. They are awesome in each of their own unique ways. I am so blessed to have them all. Each one has such a different back story & they teach me every day that you ought NEVER judge a book by its cover. What a concept. . . To not have preconceived notions about a certain subject is pretty darn hard. Think about it; if you see a guy walk by who is dressed in very feminine clothes, possibly talks with a lisp and would rather hang with the girls than watch football, you would think he's soft and has or is worth less than any other man. What would it look like for a human today to love all men and women equally? Is it even possible. I believe that it is. Reading Ephesians 2:1-10, I get a picture of what Christ has planned for us. I say that in a "it's coming" sort of tone, because I know it is. I want God to continually convict me of my ignorance, stupidity & pride
so that I may brow & blossem into the man of God he longs for me to be, who I LONG FOR ME TO BE!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

end of another great week

Yes, the kids went home today. It was another great week. Kids came to understand better who Jesus is and what a relationship with Him can look like. Some accepted the call that is put forth, some are not ready. The thing that matters is that they heard and understood Truth. What I love about Young Life as an organization is that whether or not the kids have decided to take Christ seriously at his words and live a devoted life, we (leaders) stand by them. We walk through life letting them know we love them and want to be there for them no matter what. That is a great picture to paint. Today is SATURDAY, and that means it is my day off. My day started off by me sleeping in until about noon. That was really nice, because I work really hard all week and get extremely tired. When I walked back into my room, I saw there was a note on the door. It was from a lady in the office, asking if any of the interns would be interested in babysitting her son Luke from 2-5:30. I love little kids, and this little 3 year old is especially funny and fun.Here is Luke. We played Candyland, with trains, watched the end of CARS, danced, and other things. He is a neat kid, and we both had a good time.

The majority of the interns went into Flagstaff (nearest non hoe-dunk town). But, I really did not feel like spending money. So, I opted to stay in camp. I'm not going to stay every weekend, but I would like to save up some money this summer. It ended up being a pretty lazy day. But, that's just okay.

Oh, and I can't forget to mention that today is my parents 39th WEDDING ANNIVERSARY!! Love you both!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

the line breaks because of too much pressure from above

Check this out; today a water line broke. Ryan and I were changing out some new sprinkler heads and in order to do this, he wanted to put in a smaller pipe and such. Well, after we had installed 4 new sprinkler heads, we were putting the sod (grass) back on and Ryan was stomping down to get it all back in place. . . When I turned the zone on to test it out, WATER STARTED BUBBLING UP AND CREATING A HUGE MESS! That is when we both knew that he had accidentally cracked one of the old pipes. It was not entirely his fault because the people who installed all the irrigation way before him did a HORRIBLE job, and it was a really crappy and cheap pipe that broke. BUT ANYWAYS,we fixed the pipe and it's all good. Pictured above is Ryan's leg next to the pipe as we put the finishing touches on it.

We got done at about 7:56PM. We had a staff/intern meeting at 8. Ryan and I both went to the meeting all muddy and smelly, but it was awesome because we both had a good time with each other and the mud. At the meeting, I entered what seems like, THE FORBIDDEN ZONE.The forbidden zone is not full of drugs and alcohol like my picture might lead you to think. The forbidden zone that I speak of tonight is a place where God has put my heart. Ya see, I have been having a heavy heart almost from day one of my internship. Something that I have kept quiet all along. It is mostly 3 topics. Swearing, taking the Lord's name in vain, and watching and being involved in things that are not "above reproach." Finally, after much debate and thought, I decided to say something about the subjects to everyone as a whole. I did not single anyone out, but just kind of spoke my mind on the subject, and said that I feel conflicted because I love everyone so much, but it just frustrates and even discourages me to see or hear where some of them are at. That is not me being judgmental either. The Lord calls us to be a people who are set apart from the rest of the world. A people who are holy and disciplined. I'm not perfect, far from it, but I know what are bad habits, and I know what is right and wrong. I also know what will bring me down if I am around it too much without taking a stand. So I said what I needed to say, and I got a lot of really positive feedback. I admitted that it was difficult for me to say what I said because I know it puts me on the spot; and no one wants to be the outspoken hypocrite, but I felt it needed to be said, and we need to challenge each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. Not just fall into the ways of the world.

(sigh) I have given it to God now though. I think I am supposed to step away for a bit now. But, to explain what I am talking about. Before the meeting, I was invited by the other interns to go see the 12:00 showing of the new movie "The Hangover." Which is kind of frustrating, mostly because it is nothing that a group of Christians who want to be set apart, especially this summer when we are in a place to be directly challenged, and after what was brought up. But wait, have I given this over to the Lord??? I am still typing about it. . . . . Anyways, pressure from a foot can break a pipe. But pressure from a sinful world can break a man. My head is going fast and hard on this one.

I just want to do the best I can do in Christ. I know I have seen a lot of trash movies before, and I know I have used swear words, I know I fail and sin and everything. But shouldn't I be seeking God all along and hold myself and other followers of Christ to a higher calling?

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

my day was scarry and awesome

Okay, I am not going to fuss around and be all dramatic, but today I almost swallowed my heart. Seriously, I had a moment that almost took the breath right away from me, make my heart stop, and even made me swear (OH SHI*). It happened like this; it is not uncommon for me to drive heavy equipment and place my self in, ohh let's say "tricky" situations. But today, it was especially true. We (out door crew) are working on a new and huge project around the pool. The pool is surrounded by about 6-8 foot rock & cement walls. And, we are going to put some beautiful flowers with stone in certain areas. Today we got the flower pots in place, and the stone needed to be lifted up over the walls and dropped into place. I was in the New Holland tractor and lifting an extremely large load of stone into place. Well, I came at the wall at a rather difficult angle, and well. . . . . tipped the tractor over. AHHHH!! It was horrible. I did not tip it completely on it's side, but I did drop the bucket into the wall, and lifted the right rear wheel off the ground. Two guys jumped onto the tractor to try to balance out the weight, but it did not work. They just unloaded the stone by hand and it all worked out. I put a small chip in the wall. God was watching over me; like he always does.The day ended with the program team doing what they call the Opera. It is a funny show with all the characters acting and singing parodies to popular songs and such. It was great. Then, we throw a carnival. The carnival is awesome, the kids have no idea it's coming, and the day is just so packed with awesomeness. It's such a great thing to be part of. I hear the music right now. Michael Jackson is blasting over the speakers and the kids are dancing. Also, they open the pool up and the zip line, and the BLOB till midnight. It's 10:52 right now. The kids jump into the pool and hot tub with their clothes on, and are just allowed and pushed to be HIGH SCHOOLERS! No rules, lots of fun and safe acceptedness. I love this place. I can't wait to take my guys to Windy Gap (in North Carolina) on the 13th of this month. :o)


Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Taco Bell

Today was great, we (the male interns) got really sick already of today's food choice so we went to Taco Bell. Yes that's right, Taco Bell was the place to be. Allow me to introduce the boys to you. All the way to the left and in the blue is Ryan Neal. Below Ryan in the white with the black hat is Bret Abraham. Next to him in the white shirt also is Mike Rudder. Going to the right again in the gray shirt is Nate Fisher. Then, far back in the white and kind of cut off is Andre Cabrales. They are a great group of guys. Not pictured is Logan Shidawara. He is the EMT and not allowed to leave camp while campers are here.