Oct 28, 2008

Small Group and Memories of Mexico

Small group tonight was great. We had a great discussion on doing stuff because you want to versus doing stuff because you know it's good for you. It was a great discussion of why we do this whole God thing. Why do we come to church and to small group? Why are we doing religion? Is it because we really want to, or is it because we think God will smite us if we don't?

The idea is that we should really desire that relationship with God, we should really want God and love God with everything instead of just being afraid of what he will do if we don't. As an illustration, Andy (the small group leader) used Psalm 42 as a picture of what it should look like for us to long for God. It should look like us thirsting for God just like a deer thirsts for water.

And here's my crazy tie in / awesome illustration for how we thirst for God. As Andy read from Psalm 42, I began to think about times when I really thirst for water versus times that I really need water. I began to think about my trip to Mexico when I was in high school. I went to Mexico with my home church (Traders Point Christian Church), and we worked on houses there.
We were told time and time again to drink water, and there were times where I was really thirsty. There were also times that I wasn't thirsty when I drank water anyways. This was because we don't always know when we need water, but we do need it. Just like God. We know that we need him and often thirst for him, but we don't always know that we are thirsty, so we should drink anyway. So the lesson for the day is to drink up, both out of deep love for God and out of the desire to stay spiritually healthy.

Oct 25, 2008

My Week with Lindsay (and a day with my dad)

Well, like I said in my last post, Lindsay was out here this week. After Monday, we just spent some time in the area. On Tuesday Night, we went to my small group. There we had dinner and fun times. Lindsay got to meet all the people that I have hung out with since I've been here. It's was a fun night with lots of laughter. They really seemed to like Lindsay, which makes me happy.

Wednesday we went over to the mall. We also went to Borders. We spent some time at Borders reading. Linds read some cooking magazines while I read a book called Blink and Jesus Wants to Save Christians. After that we went out to eat at a place that Lindsay was begging me to eat at. She wanted to eat at Costa Vida. It's a great place and if you are in Maine or somewhere out west, then you should find one and go there.

Thursday was an adventure. My dad met us at EastPointe and we went out exploring that afternoon. We saw four lighthouses on the coast (plus two from a distance on islands and one that doesn't work any more). We spent all afternoon traveling down the coast and looking at the lighthouses. It was a great afternoon with my fiancee and my dad. We ended the evening at the Lobster Shack and got some real seafood. My dad spent the night and then went back to New Hampshire to teach for a retreat.

Friday, Linds and I relaxed and worked on some homework. We watched Indiana Jones and the kingdom of the Crystal skull. It was a nice relaxing end to the week.

Finally on Saturday I took Linds to they airport and she went home.
And that was my week with my fiancee and the day with my dad.

I've updated my picture albums, so there are more in the New England Adventures album and there's an album for Lindsay's trip.

Oct 21, 2008

A Weekend with Lindsay.

On Saturday I got up, I drove down to Manchester, NH and picked up Lindsay from the airport. Since then, Linds and I have done a lot.

On the way back up from Manchester, we stopped first at Goldenrod for ice cream. Then, from there we went up to Kittery, ME and wandered around the outlet stores. We also stopped at Stonewall Kitchen in York, ME. There, we tried all of the jams, dips, salsas, and sauces that they had out. We also bought some Chipotle Pineapple Salsa. It is wonderful. Then we spent the evening at home watching the Sox beat the Rays in game 6.

Sunday, I had to work. I helped in e-kids again. It was a little crazy this week. Then Linds and I went out to Wendy's with some of my friends here. I spent the afternoon preparing for Fusion. This was the first time that I led Fusion all by myself. Jared was out for the weekend, so I was left in charge (I know, it's a scary thought). So I taught the High School students, and left the middle school leaders to run fusion without me for the first time. The night went well. We had the most total amount of students that we have ever had. Then Linds and I went home and watched the Sox lose in game 7. Who would have guessed that the Rays and the Phillies would go to the world series?

Monday, I got the day off and Linds and I went to Freeport, ME, the home of L.L. Bean. It was a beautiful day. We wondered around all the outlets and treated ourselves to some Ben and Jerry's ice cream. I also found a nice coat at the Timberland outlet for over half off the original price, that made me happy.

We also wondered around the Old Port area of Portland. It's a nice little area with old buildings and lots of quaint little shops. It is also right on the water front. It was a nice day. That's been our trip so far. We'll see what the rest of the week has in store for us.

Oct 15, 2008

It's about time for an update.

Well, here's the long and short of what's been happening:
Saturday, I enjoyed a nice day out. I went with two students out to a soccer game. We enjoyed beautiful day and some awesome scenery. The field overlooked the Back Cove, and on the other side of the cove was the city of Portland. It really was a great view.
We watch the two students from the youth ministry play soccer. Unfortunately, the game ended in a tie. It was a good day, nonetheless.
That evening, I helped take a group of middle school students down to a corn maze. Surprisingly enough, this was my first time in a corn maze. It was a great time, even though my group was lost for about 45 minutes. It was a fun time of walking around in circles.

Sunday was my second week in a row helping with e-kids. Children's ministry really is a different experience from youth ministry. We talked about Jonah (or as the New Englanders like to say it "Joner"). Then Sunday night was another great night in middle school fusion. For the first week, someone else gave the lesson, which was nice, I didn't have to prepare the lesson. I helped lead the games. Next week, however, I'm covering for Jared in High School Fusion. After fusion, we had a dodge ball for the high school guys. It was a great time that has still left me sore.

Monday, I celebrated Columbus day. It is a much bigger holiday out here in New England. Some students had a four day weekend because of the holiday. It's so big because it's the last chance that some people get to go camping. I went over to a friends for a cook out and for flag football.

It was a great holiday weekend. This weekend, however, I'm looking forward to a guest. Lindsay comes out this Saturday and I can't wait to see her.

Oct 9, 2008

New England in the Fall

Well, I haven't been out sight seeing recently, but it's not hard to see the beauty of creation here in Maine. All I have to do is to drive to work and see the beautiful colors of the fall. Everyday there are more and more colors in the trees. So, I thought I would share the color with everyone not here to see it and for my friends in Miami who won't experience the fall because of a warmer climate. I took both of these pictures on my way to work a few days ago. Enjoy.

I've also put some more pictures in my New England Adventures album.

Oct 6, 2008

The Hoedown

This weekend the church had an interesting event. It was the Hill-Billy Hoedown. I must say that I haven't participated in an event like this before. It was an event with food, dancing, and hill-billy games. And of course, everyone was dressed up. Most people wore flannel. It was a great time of just hanging out and having a great time.

The church hired a professional square dance caller. So, I learned to square dance and line dance. It certainly was quite the experience, and also quite the work out. Though, some of the dances were a lot harder than I thought.

The funniest part of the night was that a lot of people assumed that I would be the expert on hill-billies, being that I am from the Midwest. They also assume that I am an expert on corn and farming, too. It's also funny to see what they think of people from the Midwest. I think they confuse farmers, red necks, and hill-billies, and assume that they are a lot a like.

Like I said, we also had some games. The games were pretty good. We had a donut eating contest and seed spitting contest. On top of the games, there was a lot of country music. It was a great time.