Category: All Posts from 2011
Go Ye Therefore… July 25, 2011

We’ve come to it… the last day of Operation Barnabas for the Peninsula team.  We began our last day by waking up at nine to an hour with God and a nice breakfast prepared by us leaders… at least… I think it was pretty nice; pancakes, bacon, and fruit beats pop tarts any day in my book.

After breakfast, our team got in their swimsuits and headed out to a member of Grace Church’s congregations house to swim in their pond and hang out as a team for the last time.  During this time, we as leaders lead our kids through their exit interviews which consist of the student’s D-group leaders and another leader reviewing the positive aspects of the summer, the things they need to keep working on, and looking to see how a student can bring what they’ve learned on Barnabas home.

It was so encouraging and heart warming to look at these students and see how God has used them in these past couple of weeks in amazing and crazy ways.  God has been able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine for these kids and He loves them more than we ever could.  Which is saying something because we love these kids SO much!  Thank you again to those responsible for these students for giving us the gift of knowing and investing in these awesome young men and women.  It is seriously our honor to see them wake up and delight in the Lord everyday.  It will be hard to say goodbye and not see that everyday.  But they’re in the Lord’s hands and that is the safest place they can be!

After the lake, we headed back to the church where Sarah gave a teaching time on discipleship to the students helped by some girls (Morgan and Leah from the Powell Church) who she disciples.  It is going to be so important to see these kids held accountable by wiser and older men and women who are willing to invest in their lives and see them grow in the Lord every day now that they no longer have OB.

After the teaching time, we headed to Chipotle for dinner and had some neat conversations with some people (even some kids who some of our students knew!)  After dinner, we went to the mall to spend time with our team, but as always, to establish conversations of intention about Scripture and lead some people to the Lord.  The grand total of souls won for the Lord this summer as of yesterday now sets at 147!  It has been SO awesome to see the Lord work through this group to see almost triple our team come to a saving grace in Jesus Christ!  ALL GLORY TO GOD!  We are so humbled and honored to have been used in such a mighty way and pray that God will continue to multiply His kingdom through the Holy Spirit working in our teammates at home.

After the mall, we headed back to the church again to speak of going home again, share communion, and hold a candle light service to make public dedications of what it is each student wants to accomplish when they go home.

I want to personally take this last blog post to thank each and every member of the Peninsula Team, including my leadership team, for the awesome and humbling summer I have had because of your willingness to let the Holy Spirit work through you.  You’re reading this now at home, back with familiar things and surrounded by those you love and whom God has called you to love!  I beg you to remember how much you have grown in faith, love, purity, and life this summer.  You have seen God and now you have the responsibility and privilege to see Him glorified by letting Him work through you to add new names to the Book of Life.  Remember how much we love you and how much we cannot wait to see what God will do through you beyond what you have even seen this summer.  We look forward to the day we get to be all together again with our Lord.  But for now, above all, remember that our Father has a season and a time for everything.  He gives, and He takes away and always knows what is best for us.  Claim that promise and rejoice in the Lord that He has planned out a perfect and beautiful path for you in Him if you would just continue to love Him, sprint after Him, read the Word, and be in constant prayer.  We love you, but He loves you more.  Thank the Lord because He is the one who is always with you and who is at your side now!  ALWAYS in prayer for you!

Thank you and love you all!

Sarah, Ashton, Cody, Brandon, and Katie

Is This the Girl’s Bathroom!!!??? – July 24, 2011

At the risk of sounding redundant… I’m going to attempt to make this blog post as brief as possible.  All of the teams were together today for ministry and programming so all of our blog posts are going to be SUPES similar.  SO..

Well, the day finally arrived… our last Sunday of ministry on Operation Barnabas.  But what a way to go out!  All of our students came together from the Peninsula, Blue Ridge, and National Team to run the morning services at Big Grace in Columbus, Ohio.  The OB teams ran two services with choir songs, skits, dances, pantomimes, and puppets from each team.  We had an amazing time praises our God who binds us in commonality.  It was so awesome to hear all of the testimonies of the students today.  To hear what God has done in each one of their lives in these weeks was an encouragement beyond words.  We as the Peninsula Team have had the most amazing summer we could have possibly had this year… my team is precious to me and God knew from the start where each of us needed to be and I have seen amazing fruit come of that.  But to be reminded that, ultimately, the God that has blessed the Peninsula Team is just as present and real and living in all three other teams and in the hearts of every believer was invaluable for our students and for us as leaders.  He is so amazing and His love is sufficient!

After the two programs this morning (where, by the way, Luke and Ian did an amazing job with there special music… shoot… God spoke through the boys… so proud of the work He has done in and through them) we headed off to Wooster to run the opening sessions of CE Nationals adult conference.  Before that, however, we stopped at a BK for some food!  We got to have some conversations with the people there and left ready to do our hour with God on the bus and take a quick nap before the next program.

When we arrived at Wooster, we helped set up what was left at the conference and changed back into our Sunday outfits after our sound check.  At the conference, our teams mingled with the attendees and encouraged them in sharing stories and testimonies of what God had been and continues to do through OB 2011.  We had dinner with the group and then moved into the main session where Peninsula performed their speech choir, National performed a pantomime, and Blue Ridge did some children’s programming.  We all sang a few choir songs together and backed up the worship band at the conference vocally.

We’re back at Powell now for the night… in bed… ready to face our last day of tour tomorrow.  It’s going to be fun… but the prospect of leaving has a lot of our students in a conflicted place right now.  Being in a community of believers for this long that so diligently encourages you to grow in your faith and share it and then being taken out of it just as suddenly isn’t easy.  But continue to pray that the Lord will condition these students hearts to love and serve the Lord with all their hearts.  God has now ordained that this be our last day together tomorrow… but by no means will this be the last time we are together.  As Tori said tonight “I CAN’T WAIT FOR HEAVEN!”  We look forward to that day when we all rejoice together in fellowship with our Lord… but until then, “let us run diligently the race marked out for us.”  For many of us, God’s path is taking us in very different directions… but what’s encouraging is that we all end at the same finish line!

Good night everyone!

 

OB, Blue Ridge Parkway Team, July 24 – A Perfect Ending.

What a joyous day today! The Blue Ridge Parkway Team kicked off the morning with the other two teams at the Grace Church at Columbus, worshiping with the members of the church during both services. The services were full of dancing, singing, puppetry, and testimonies, all focusing on the greatness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It was such a blessing to spend the morning at GBC of Columbus!

We grabbed lunch and headed off to Wooster, OH where we set up and rehearsed for the Adult Conference that is being hosted at the GBC there: “Vision 2020”. Once the pastors and other attenders began arriving, our students struck up conversations and made them feel welcome. After a brief informational meeting and dinner, our team headed back to the children’s ministry area and presented a program to the kids who came along with their family. It was a wonderful, joyful time, and the leaders even joined in on the fun! After we were finished, we stuck around for the ice cream social that the conference provided, and then we loaded up the bus and headed back to Worthington. One full day left, and we’re already starting to get a little reminiscent…it’s been a great summer.

July 23 – Pictures
July 22 – Photos