This summer will mark something remarkably unique for me. I have gone to a summer church camp for 26 straight years and will not be going this summer. A crazy and unique experience for me, for sure. I love camp. I believe in camp. Turner Falls Youth Camp in 1996 had a lot to do with getting me into the ministry position I am in today.
I remember that camp during the summer between my 6th and 7th grade year. I felt a call into full-time vocational ministry. This is not an uncommon thing at camps accross the United States every summer. For me it was wildly uncommon. I was the kid that would go unnoticed in class because I never spoke. I kept quiet.
Fast forward amost 20 years later. I am the Executive Pastor at my church. I have pastored here for 9 years and pastored a total of 12 years. I have been priviliged to see my students make a positive impact on this world. God has truly blessed me.
That camp forever altered the trajectory of my life. In those 20 years I have learned the value of people around you.
Leap Day is just a day for most people. However, the fact remains it makes 2016 a year with 366 days, not 365. We decided NOT to waste our extra day.
So Monday February 29th, 2016 we set out to give 24 hours to our community. We didn’t want to waste a second of this extra day and I can safely say we did not.
Through indivdual prayer times, nursing home visitation, hero appreciation, trash pickup and cleanup, and a huge awesome party we made our Leap Day something to remember forever.
I learned something about myself and other people on that day:
1. We is better than me
I speak this phrase all the time to the ministries I am privileged to lead. We is truly better than me. I learned that during our Serve29 project. No one person could’ve ever made Serve29 successful. It took countless amounts of people pulling their own to make it such a great day.
2. Give a man a place and he will serve
Serving is not up for discussion in the kingdom of God. I saw so many people jumping into roles that needed filling. Give someone a why to serve and they can deal with any how.
3. Fun is spiritual
God is not some stoic and silent personality. Each personality on this planet bears his markings, so when a group of people get together and have some fun, HE IS THERE.
4. Love can carry you farther than anything
The bible teaches that God is love. So his people must use love as our only weapon. Serve29 was all about love. We were asked so many times at different Serve29 events why we were doing it, our only answer was We Love Tahlequah.
5. There is good in this world
Truth be told we can lose sight of this sometimes. I am reminded that good still exists and that good can top any negativity this world offers.
Do something GOOD in the world today!