Thursday, June 29, 2006

Trip Memories - Our Warm Welcome

Our Warm Welcome

While traveling from Vermont to Pennslyvania to Kentucky to Indiana and back all within 11 days, and oh yes, with 3 children under age 4, we acquired about as many stories as we had scattered french fries through out the van.

One the first leg of our journey.. we stopped after 8 hours of driving at strangers house. Well, not exactly a stranger. This summer, NETS hired a college gal to intern and help with business operations. She happened to be placed in our bible study group the last 2 weeks before the school year ended. After study one night, we were chatting about our road trip to the midwest, she excitedly said "You have to stop and meet my parents. In fact, it's about half way, you should stay the night. My parents would love to host you." The next day, she called and told me her mother was already (1 week prior) preparing the room for us. It was so sweet and thoughtful.

As Steve and I talked about whether or not to accept their kind offer something stood out toward us. If you are a friend of the "Son" then you are a friend of the "Father". If the Son invites you to his home you are welcomed by the Father.

Not only was this a sweet illustration of the gospel, but also a sweet testimony to the scriptures of how the Lord makes us (strangers in one sense) into ONE FAMILY because of our love for Jesus.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

End of School Party & Surprise!!!

Yesterday was the End-of-the-Year Party for Senior High Youth Group. It was a great time. Steve had lots of things planned for the evening including: a cookout, volleyball, ultimate frizbee, our annual water fight and a movie. We couldn't have asked for a better night in terms of weather. What Steve didn't know was that we (a large group of the youth and I) had a secret operation. Yesterday was Steve's 30th birthday!!! YEP the big 3... 0... The plan was a group of boys were to tackle Steve to the ground while a group of girls attacked him with cool whip pies. It worked. Although we were not as sneaky as I would have liked. As Steve caught me and the girls walking out of the house with something behind our back, the boys all gathered behid him just waiting like a lion waiting to pounce. He knew something was fishy and about to happen when finally one of the boys said... ATTACK. Steve went down and we came in with the pies. What more could a youth pastor ask for than to be smeared with cool whip for his birthday. The party continued with the planned water fight which was probably the best one we have had in our 5 years of youth ministry. Everyone was drenched. The seniors were honored with a little whip cream smearing as well. (ps... that should be a warning to any of you who want to graduate in the future. ;-) The night was so warm that most didn't watch the movie but rather continued to just playing games and hang out.

What a great year for the youth group. As He continues to plan for the Summer Youth Retreat I know his continued prayer is that all the jr & sr. high would Believe and Behold the only Son of God, Jesus Christ for True Life.. Eternal Life. (John 6:40)