It’s begun!!!!!  Operation Barnabas 2012 has officially started today here at Grace Church in Powell, Ohio.  The summer began with OBers showing up as early as 1:30 this afternoon.  It’s so exciting to see all of the faces, personalities and hearts that we have been praying for so relentlessly over the past couple of months.

Students came in from all over the country as leaders busily made airport runs, gave tours of the facility, and checked students into their summer of ministry with Barnabas.

After getting settled into sleeping rooms, students spent some time getting to know one another and making build up posters that we will be leaving at each church we visit on tours this summer.  Alex, Sarah, TK, and Sherilyn spent some time chatting with parents dropping their OBers off at orientation and answered questions they had concerning the summer.  All the while, students continued to get to know one another through some ice breaker games officiated by Josh and Elizabeth.

After the parents meeting was finished and the games were concluded, the students said some final and quick goodbyes and headed off to their very FIRST OB choir practice of the summer.  Dave Rank led the kids in learning the songs they will be using to worship the Lord with this summer and began to run through some harmonies.

Barnabas students aren’t selected for their talent or experience, but God has blessed us with a group this year that I think will have a lot of fun and worship with their music this summer.

After choir we had dinner provided by Powell Grace… THANKS!  and then went back for another session of choir.  Choir finished up with all of our kids finally present and we went straight into our first session where students shared some awesome stories of God’s faithfulness in financially providing for them to be here in ministry this summer.

God has these students here for a reason, and it’s the most exciting thing ever to think about how just that fact alone reminds us of his relentless love for each one of them.

After these awesome stories, TK, Alex, and Sarah shared on some of the attributes of Barnabas as the imitator of Christ that we desire to see our students emulate this summer.  We finished the session, spent some time sharing in our sleeping rooms and hit the lights for some shut eye.

Please pray for these students as they go throughout their tour.  Pray that the gospel will become more real to them than ever before.

 

Ben H. and Jacob H. loving choir!

Rachel Z., Emily W., and Kim W. smiling while learning the choir songs.

Marc B., Nick W., Michael R., Marcelo V., Stephen Y., and Cody S. singing their hearts out.

Anthony E., Hanna H., and Kelly M. learn about each other at dinner.

Cari O. and Claire B. enjoy a meal together.

Cody S., Alissa B., Caroline S., Alec M., Courtney P., Hayley N., Rachel Z., Nate R., Hannah-Catherine S., Sarah L., and Rachel G. get to know each other in a mingling game.

Abby R., Alyssa B., and Courtney P. make encouraging posters together.