Monday, July 23, 2007

the silence is broken

two weeks without blogging. sorry. i have not had much time. but, i have a little now, and i have my grilled cheese and my cherry coke, so here goes nothing...

two weeks ago was MTW week. the M.T. Dubbs are the missionaries coming back into Amerika from overseas and they swing through RH for the debrief. we take care of their kids and also facilitate many of the activities, like high ropes and climbing wall and such. its a really different week than what we are used to- but in a good way. most of the counselors had the evenings free (though we were technically "on call" 24/7) and so we just hung out. we watched alot of office, did a giant puzzle, stayed up late, and watched all 6 star wars movies in 5 days. yes. it was epic in every sense. as soon as the title page came on we all went nuts screaming and hollering and we read the beginning scrolling part at the top of our lungs. it was thoroughly enjoyable.
another thing happened that week. at the end of the week, i checked my bank statement, and partly from my own fooling spending habits and through someone getting ahold of my check card online and stealing money from me, i was $200 in the hole. thats alot of money to me, especially considering that its 10% of the max amount of money i will be payed for my work here this summer. so, needless to say, i was concerned. but, as it timed out, i had a camp to be in the next week, so the Lord gave me a peace about it and i did what i could with the time and resources i had at the time. i told my leaders and the other counselors in the junior camp i was in last week and we prayed about it and my family and close friends were also praying for me. and, on top of this, my support has been looking rather thin this summer. i need to raise $1000 of my total salary for the summer, and last weekend i was just under $400, with just three weeks left in the summer. half way through the week my camp leader came up to me and handed me a check for my support. this is the guy i work under helping with support. it blew me away. then, this weekend i checked my bank statement and i was $20 in the positive. also, earlier in the week i was handed a $50 bill. Praise God for how He provides for His Covenant people! time and time again the Lord has provided many things for me this summer. if nothing else, what i will come away with at the end of this experience is a surety that all i have- from energy to patience to personality to time to money- everything i have has been graciously given to me from my Heavenly Father.
alright. so, i was in junior camp the week after the M T Dubbs. i was under wes and hope parsons again, and it was phantasmagoric. thats right. that just happened. this week i had six boys and we were down in the dungeon again (formerly the "crows nest"). man, these boys were a handful. somehow, in Gods providence, i always get those ones. i had one who was a food waster, one who was a genuinely oblivious to everything going on around him, one who had all the answers, one with a speech impediment and a penchant for all peanut butter all the time, and another who was the younger brother of my boss, andrew. it was a challenging week. wes and hope's philosophy of junior camp is that whatever you are doing, whether its an activity or cabin devotions, or crafts (blegh), or just walking from one thing to another, THAT thing is the MOST EXCITING THING YOU HAVE EVER DONE!! the reason behind this philosophy is that kids this age catch on to your moods so easily. they are shaped by their counselors attitudes. so, even if the activity sucks, if the counselors makes the very most of it, then its great to them. needless to say, this is extremely exhausting. but, wes and hope are good to their counselors and we got happy nappys several times throughout the week. anyway, bigfoot was back this week and so was Granddaddy's "Nature Anthem," which cannot be explained in words, other than to say that it unified the junior camp, and provided many an activity and a fun and catchy song to sing wherever we walked. also, it supposedly lured sasquatch out of the woods, and he came and danced for us on the last night.
the biggest thing that happened this week was that the crazy star wars enthusiasm which the counselors caught the week before came with us. we were star wars nuts all week. the kids caught on to it and we had light saber duels with flashlights and all the campers were "younglings" and any counselor whose name could be fit into a starwars name was called by that name. becca was chewbecca. mary jett was boba jett. (those two were my creations). mikey was mike windu. trey was trey-gone-gene. scott was obi-scott-kenobi. i, being prone to the dark side, was darth scotch. my master was emperor wespetine. when we played games we renamed them with some star wars name. and, of course, we played the most epic game ever, simply called: star wars. dark room. strobe lights. two teams. tin foil balls. whoever has the most loses. epic.
at the end of the week my parents came to Ridge Haven. it was such a blessing to see them and to be able to spend time with them. they came friday night and saw me in action when me and all my boys dressed up as a pack of Tuscan raiders for dinner and then a bunch of counselors got up and did the star warz rap. saturday mom and dad and i went to twin dragons, the nations largest chinese buffet, found right here in Brevard, NC. we stuffed ourselves and they sat there for an hour or so talking. it was so so good. it was such a respite for me to be able to see them and talk with them about whats on my mind and to let them see what the Lord has been doing in my life through this summer. we went to the antique store, after stalking the local legend "fannny pack boy" who power walks all helter skelter around Brevard with a fanny pack and discman, shredding some serious air guitar, lip sinking, kicking down imaginary doors with the jack Bauer B.A. kick of authority, and occationally doing a little two step at a pedestrian crossing- all while balancing the discman in one hand in front of him and pumping something fantastically inspirational into his head through those old school head phones. yeah. fanny pack boy is one of my favorite characters. anyways, mom and dad and i went to asheville and swung by greenlife for some dread soap and hippie food, and strutted on over to Shindig on the Green, a massive bluegrass hootenanny. it was alot of fun. at said festival, i ran into none other than snake bite mike and his roomy danny mcpickles. they said james harrison has a bonfire at his sweet pad up in the mountains, so we headed over there. we snuck up on the party through the woods and literally made out entrance from under a snack table. no one saw it. all of the stealth was for naught. but, jonathan cate was there and peter griff was there and alex was there and a few other soon-to-be CovCol peeps. it was sweet fellowship. we sat around the fire till 2 talking and laughing and passing around a guitar. pickes house was good too. it was great to spend time with him and mike windu.
things to pray about this week:
- Praise that the Lord has provided funds for me. please pray that he would continue to, and that i would be satisfied with the portion which he has appointed.
- strength for me. its my last week of camp this summer. it has been exhausting and exhilerating. thats spelled wrong. i like it, though. the summer, not the misspelled word.
- wisdom for me. i am in senior high this week. i dont have time talk down to little kids. i can challenge these campers and expect some thought process to go into their answers. thats going to be difficult and equally challenging for me to engage them in this way.
- please pray for all the counselors here. this is a HUGE week. we have close to 200 campers coming.

anyways, ill try and upload some pictures from last week and this past weekend some time during this next week during a happy nappy or something. i love you all. thanks for the mail and the posts and for your thoughts and prayers. this ministry would fail if it werent for the people of God faithfully bringing it to Him in prayer.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

black crows

40 junior kids + tubes + the french broad = 3 hr nap in the water

last week was the first ever Junior Great Adventure Week. my cabin was the black crows. we kicked butt. it was good, but very tiring. actually, nothing too significant happened... which was a little disconcerting. i fear that i have started relying on my own strength to make it through the week- kind of going through the motions. please pray that i would not become comfortable in my position here. i was under wes and hope parsons, and they are just great. it was a real pleasure to work with them. i got slimed, tossed in the pool, but avoided the pie. that last time i got pied i was wearing this sweet bandanna tobi sent me, and four weeks later, it still smells like sour milk. bummer. my boys were very hyper and it was difficult to get through to them. but, we had a lot of fun and we tried to learn about Jesus. i tried to teach them. despite my inadequesies (ie not being able to use the english language properly) the Lord got the gospel through to them. MTW has a retreat here this week and thats what ill be doing- helping out with that. i get a break from cabin life for a week... just in time too. i am getting weary. i appreciate the packages and letters from you all- kinsey, kyrie, sienner, maryann, tobi, mom and dad, krista and anna... its great. i really love getting mail. thank you all. ok. picture time.

building shelters with the boys. this one was alot bigger than what you see here- it would have fit all seven of us... and it had some serious blackberry patches right next door. location location location.

left to right: jake, wes, and lupton competing to break the camp record of 27 french toast sticks. lupton got 30.5 ... intense!

matt and ashton, two serious troublemakers

andrew lupton masquerading as an old man on July 4th. priceless.

more mudpit action. note the bag on the head. its essential.

breaking down camp out at the wilderness site. by the way, thats the pack i found at looking glass outfitters used for $60. retail, it is about $200. its an osprey pack. i like.

oh- ps- brooks and reeva got married. it was fantastic. yes, maryann, fantastic. me, dan sause, kieth, davis the carney, anna, and huh-lexis went to virginia to attend. crazy state. careful- speed limit enforced by aircraft.

Monday, July 2, 2007

gabe irby. not one of my campers, though. he and caleb were there. i grew up with these kids but havent seen them in over 10 years. its good to see how the Lord has brought them up to be good, Godly men.

a little tube tossing


coaching marshall on the bouldering wall

jr high great adventure

junior great adventure week

so this week i am a counselor in the first every junior great adventure. we will be tibing down the french broad, doing a little survival skills, and some other mild "adventurous" things. there is only so much you can do with kids this age. last week was good. the Lord blessed me with four boys who were believers. one of them was the son of John Linville, the man i lead worship with every day. JT is his name. he plays bass in the priase team, and it was a blast to have him for a week in my tent. i got very wet and very tired. GAW's are very different for regular camp. we walked miles and miles every day just to get to meals or meetings. it is a completely different pace, and i am still trying to put my finger on exactly how i feel about it. anyway, the Lord was good last week in revealing Himself to me in various ways, through His word and also through His creation. i am the leader of Cabin Black Crow this week, and i am very excited. i was a little bummed that i didnt get a senior high this week, but i trust that this is where the Lord wants me. more later.