Sep 28, 2008

Another weekend, more youth ministry.

Nothing too exciting this week. Just another week of youth ministry. Here's my weekend:

Friday was the birthday of the twin boys of the family that I am living with. I enjoyed a birthday lunch with the family and then relaxed for a few hours. Probably the highlight of my weekend was spending my Friday afternoon hanging with one of the 8th grade guys from my d-group. We went to the mall and walked around for a couple of hours. It was such a great time to get to know one of the students. We had a great time just wandering around and talking about life and his interests. That evening I came back and played monopoly with some of the high school students. We played teams and my team ended up selling everything that we had to another team to crush the team that was winning.

Saturday, I spent the morning helping Jared, the youth minister, move some couches to the church for the youth area. Unfortunately for us, they were both hide-a-beds, the heaviest couches known to men. We got that done and then I enjoyed the afternoon off. Then that evening, there was a dinner for high school students at Jared's house.

Sunday, surprisingly, was an easy day for me, because I didn't teach for middle school fusion. We had a joined service tonight and I didn't really have much responsibility. So I just hung out with students. Then I topped the evening off with gas at $3.37/gallon at seven-eleven (oh thank heaven).

That was my weekend. Tomorrow will be a long day, and next saturday I have a hoe-down to look forward to. I'll be sure to have pictures of that.

Sep 24, 2008

A few things that I've never seen in Indianapolis.

Last night, instead of having small group we did something a little bit different. We went out to see a baptism on at the ocean. It was a little bit cold, and I didn't even get into the water. It was really cold for the two the went out into the water. It was really awesome though to see a baptism right there in God's creation. Aside from a little bit of cold is was a beautiful night there on the beach. It was a really cool experience, and definitely one that can't happen quite like that in the midwest.

This morning, I also had an experience that I've not had growing up in Indianapolis. This morning there were wild turkey wondering around outside my apartment. I know that's not really important, but I found it amusing. So I thought that I'd share.

Oh, by the way, I'm putting pictures from last night online, just scroll down to the spot on the right hand side of the blog where it says, "Where have I been?" They'll be there.

Sep 21, 2008

Middle Schoolers and Seven-Eleven.

No, I didn't take Middle School students down to the seven-eleven, but those were both the highlights of my day.

Today is Sunday, which for me is a day at "the office." Only my office on Sunday is a former karate studio packed with middle school students. Now that's awesome. Every Sunday, I help lead the Middle School part of the Sunday night Fusion service as a part of the Student Ministries at EastPointe Christian Church. So, from 6-7:30pm every Sunday night it's me, 3 other awesome leaders, and 25 students hanging out in the E-kids room. Tonight was an awesome night, and really energized me.

Each Sunday consists of games and then a lesson. Tonight we played elbow tag and shuffle your buns, and our lesson was on the first of the five purposes. We talked about Shining the Light of Jesus. The big idea of the lesson was that we evangelize because God cares for people wants them to be saved. God made us, he loves us, and he wants us to have a relationship with us. That is why he wants Christians to spread the good news of Jesus. Because of love. And that was my lesson. The night went really well. The students asked lots of questions and participated really well. It's nights like these that make me love youth ministry. I hope that I was as awesome as these middle schoolers when I was their age.

Then after that, I found out that the Colts lost, sad. Then I left, and went to fill up my car. This is where Seven-Eleven comes in. Recently, I discovered that the seven-eleven by the church drops its price for Sundays. So, thanks to seven-eleven, my evening ended with cheap (sort-of) gas at 3.50 a gallon.

This was my Sunday, and will probably be what a typical Sunday is like for me for a while. I just hope all the Fusions are close to being this good.

Sep 19, 2008

It's been a long, but great week.

Like I said at the end of the last post, my Monday began with taking Rondel to the airport at 4:00 am. That was quite the experience. It took me about an hour round trip to go pick up Rondel from Jared's, take him to the airport, and then go back home and sleep. This was the first of many busy days this week. Monday wasn't too exciting at the office, and actually most days really aren't that exciting. They are productive, but not really exciting. That evening, though, I had a great time helping David, one of the two high school guys I live with, find cleats. This was fun because it is really hard to find cleats a third of the way through the soccer season. Most of the shoes that he wanted were sold out. Eventually, he found some. The best part was, however, just hanging out and talking soccer with him.
On Tuesday, I went to small group. There is a small group at EastPointe for college age/20 somethings. I found out about this group by accident, but love the fact that I am able to participate in a small group. The group is called "Live 4:12" (live as in "I live" not as in "This is a live broadcast) from 1 Tim 4:12 (setting an example for the believers in speech, life, love, and faith, and purity). It's a great group, and we have a great time every week. Next week, we're going down to the beach to see a baptism, so I'll probably have some pictures from that.
Wednesday is my d-group night. We rapped up our discussion of evangelism this week. We talked about how we can use our testimonies to share our faith. As a part of that we talked about a really cool thing called cardboard testimonies. I challenged the guys to think about what they could right on a piece of cardboard that would be able to tell people how God has made a difference in their lives.
Thursday and Friday were once again game nights. Thursday, I saw the Windham Eagles beat the Gorham Rams 1-0 in soccer for the first time in 5 years, and learned that I need to buy long underwear. The nights have consistently been in the 40's and one night was supposed to dip into the 30's. And Friday I saw Scarborough get beat in football. I was really there to hang out with Middle School students. I found out that in Scarborough, the football game is the place for the middle school students to hang out on friday nights. It certainly was an interesting experience just to hang out with a bunch of middle schoolers.
This has been a long week, with something to do every night of the week, but it's been fun. I am, however, going to enjoy Saturday.

Sep 15, 2008

A visitor from the Midwest.

This weekend was great, and long. Saturday started with a birthday party for one of the high school students. That was a fun time. Water balloons and lots o' cake make for a good time. The highlight of the weekend was, however, Rondel, my youth ministry professor, coming to visit.
Rondel got in a little later than expected because of a storm in Detroit. I picked him up from the Jetport and began the short tour of the Greater Portland Area. It started at the Portland Head Light. Unfortunately, it was a foggy, foggy day. You couldn't see very far out into the ocean, or the lighthouse from far away. It was cool though. It's always great to get out and see nature and lighthouses. From there we made our way farther down the coast to the Lobster Shack at the Two Lights Lighthouse. It was a real taste of sea food and New England culture, though I hear its a little more touristy than a local favorite. Still, it's good food, it's right on the ocean, and is next to a lighthouse. We had a great time there and got a really good chance to talk about how my internship was going.
From there we drove through the Old Port in Portland. This is a really cool area that I'd like to go back and see in the daylight. It's one of the older parts of Portland and some of the streets still have the cobble stone streets. There's old buildings and cool architecture. Though, it's kind of like the French Quarter of New Orleans, a lot of bars. It's not a place you want to walk around at night.
Sunday morning we had church, and I had my first experience working in E-kids. It was a good experience, the kids were, for the most part well behaved, and I really didn't have to do a whole lot. I was just a glorified helper. From there I went to second service and then to the parents luncheon for the youth ministry parents. Unfortunately, the Dominoes guy was 15 minutes late. We still got our food though. It was good meeting and nice chance to get to know some of the parents.
After that, Rondel and I made a sprint up to Freeport to see L.L. Bean. We perused the selection, and then decided that the "outlet" was a better idea than the "retail" store because of the lower prices. And, when he asked the cashier why the prices were lower at this store as opposed to the store less than 100 yds away, she said, "because we're the outlet store and not the retail store." After that, we made a mad dash back to ECC to get ready for Fusion.
Fusion went really well, though while teaching the Middle School students, it looked like some of them had slipped into a coma. I think they were really listening though. It was a great night, and Middle school students are definitely more fun to play games with. We ended the night at D'Angelos sandwich shop and then I took Rondel to the airport at 4:30am.

It was a long, but good weekend. I can't wait for more people to come visit.

Sep 12, 2008

Football and Futbol.

Well, school is in full swing out here in Maine and that means it's time for sports. Yesterday I went to Westbrook High School and watched the Freshman Blue Blazes. Jared, my field mentor, is the assistant coach at Westbrook. It was a good game to watch. I felt bad for the freshman, 2 of whom go to EastPointe, because the score was 46-8. If the first quarter could be thrown out, however, the score would be 16-8. It was a good time, and the two kids from the youth ministry did well, but it was kind of a rough game.

Tonight it was soccer at Windham High School. I was planning on going to Scarborough, but turns out that game was away and over an hour away. So I went with the family I went with to the boys' soccer game. It was a great game, and really close the whole time. If it weren't for one pk, it would have been even closer. Windham lost 2-0, but played well. It really made me miss playing soccer. Maybe, if my future wife will let me, I will play next year. I still have years of eligibility left.

While at the soccer game I also learned a few things about Maine. 1: The temperature swing from day to evening is a lot bigger than in the Midwest. It's been in the 70's during the day, but it will dip down to the 40's at night. Lesson learned is: always have warmer clothes for the evening. 2: I need to get a rain coat, a warm rain coat. Because of the swing in temperature, when it rains at night, it gets a little colder. Thankfully, I was warm enough tonight during the game, but in the future, it probably won't be good enough. Basically, the moral of the story, is when in Maine be prepared for cold.

This weekend, Rondel, my youth ministry professor, is coming to visit. So there should be some interesting stories from this weekend.

Sep 11, 2008

because you know you want to know what interns do.

I am just about to rap up my first week of regularly scheduled ministry. I am sure that some of you want to know what I've been up to, so now is the time to find out.
Last weekend was awesome. It was one of the craziest weekends I have ever had. I went on a retreat with 6 awesome high school students and Jared (the youth minister) and Rachel (his wife). We went camping in Conway, NH in the shadow the white mountains. During the retreat Jared took us to Mt. Chocorua and we went on a hike up to the top. So far this is a pretty normal experience. I have been camping before. I haven't actually hiked a mountain, so that was a first, but I've seen mountains before. So mountains are not a new thing to me.

I didn't realize how hard it was really to hike up a mountain. I am certainly not in the type of shape that it requires to do that again. I need to work-out before I do that again. Eventually however, we made it to the top, and it was amazing.
The real adventure was on the way down. We began to come down, and the first hard part was finding the trail again in the fog (I say fog, but that far up it's really cloud). We found the trail and began to descend the mountain. Except, when we were about 1.4 mile from the top, we realized we took the wrong trail about 1 mile back. So we went back. It was either this or come down on the wrong side of the mountain. So we went back up and found the trail we were supposed to be on. On the way back up it began raining. This was TS Hanna coming to join the party. Hanna began pouring down on us like crazy. Long story short, we finally made it down, in the dark, in the rain, about 5.5 hours after we had started. It was quite the experience and I'm glad to have been apart of it. More Pictures from Elevate Retreat

The Sunday that we came back, Fusion started. Fusion is the Sunday night service for Middle School and High School. I am leading the Middle School this semester and they are a great group of kids. We played ping pool and the classic balloon stomp. Ping pool (blowing ping pong balls into cups taped to the table like pool pockets) turned into students dizzy from blowing so hard so fast. From there we gathered the students and Jared welcomed them to fusion and told them what it was all about. After Fusion, I took two students home and watched the Colts game with them. They had lived in Indy for a few years, and their dad had season tix to for the Colts while he lived there. We were all disappointed to watch the Colts lose to da bears. But I had a great time with the Rossiters and especially since their son Colton is in my d-group.

Wednesday, we had our first d-group. I was a expecting more than I got, but the group that I got was awesome. 3 really solid guys. They participated well and I enjoyed getting to know them and I am sure I will have lots of fun getting to know them and hang out with them in the future. We talked about what we need to do to "Shine the Light of Jesus." This is the first of the 5 different pieces of a Christian's identity that we will talk about.

That's all for now, I'll try to post regularly (at least once a week) so that those outside of Maine can know what's going on.