- LATEST BLOG ENTRY:
I just got done having lunch with the president of the college, the founder of the South Seas Ministries, and a couple of the senior professors. The last two days I have had the privilege of teaching three classes each day to the University students. This has been a lot of fun for me to interact with the students. I've taught practical ministry classes, a class on 1 Corinthians, Homiletics class, Leadership, and tomorrow I will be talking about globalization and Christianity. Yes, this has been challenging but fun as it allows for lots of conversation with the students after class. On the way back to the house last night at 10pm I was stopped by 4 of the students who asked many questions about church and Christianity--I felt bad for Jason and Drew who were stuck having to listen to this conversation, but they were both good sports. A group of students has asked if I will meet with them tonight at 10pm, which I plan on doing.
I really feel like God is up to something on this campus because the conversations I find myself in are very different than in the past years. I am torn, as I really enjoy the teaching opportunities and sharing with the students, because I would also love to spend more time with the team as the venture out from the campus. Today, while I was teaching, the team went to the city to shop for souvenirs and eat at a popular fish and chips restaurant. It was a treat for many of them to have their very first Coke in a whole week. They’ve had some great times as they have come back and forth from the town in a van which I hear is full of joy and laughter.
The third day for sports and kids camp went very well. The entire team continues to give 110%. It's fun for me to walk around and watch our team as they interact with the kids and the teenagers. But I want to share with you what I saw after camp yesterday. As the rain was coming down, our team was still out there. Josh Phillips had about 15 kids surrounding him with his percussion instruments teaching them some rhythms. Katie had a group of teenage girls in a circle teaching them how to throw a Frisbee. I saw a group of kids with Ginny and Chelsea under a tree taking pictures with their camera. Drew had a group of 6-8 young kids playing tackle football; he had to stop when one of the boys got a bloody nose. Tiffany and Bethany were off playing volleyball with the students. Jason and Molly could also be found playing waffle ball with the kids. And then there was Greg, Josh Borkin and I teaching the kids American baseball and hoping and praying no one would get hurt with the metal bat. Finally, around 6:30, people started getting ready to go back and eat dinner and get cleaned up. We later found out that Drew and Katie had a different plan as the rain was coming down hard they thought it would be a great opportunity to go for a swim in the ocean. Once again we had an amazing dinner prepared by the ladies. Everyone is just enjoying the food, no one has gotten the slightest bit sick and for sure no one is going hungry. After dinner we had a team meeting about how to finish strong and encouraged one another. Then we finished the day off with what we now call “the song game” I will say a word and they all need to come up with the most amount of songs that include that word in the least amount of time possible. Then we went down to the field and continued our game with some kids that showed up from the village, it was a great time to just share and informally hang out. I honestly believe that lives are being changed not only with the people here in Samoa, but also with the people on the team.
I just looked at the time so I need to sign off. It’s our last day and our prayer is that we finish strong. Our team is very tired but willing to give everything they’ve got left in the tank.
I hope to send you one last blog tomorrow. I want to let you know that every day Josh Phillips has come with me to help make this blog happen (he types as I dictate)--Let’s just say he looks great doing it in his lava lava...and thank God for spell check. I also want to take the opportunity to thank Chris Faucher who makes sure that this blog gets published.
Also, someone please let Danica know about this blog as she got back from Chile the day Josh left for Samoa and does not know about it.
- Ginny: Shared her testimony at the youth meeting. It was very powerful. She will be singing the National Anthem tomorrow night at the closing party.
- Josh B: He led the prayer in the Sunday morning service and shared his testimony at the sports camp yesterday.
- Greg: He preached at the youth service and led our morning devotions.
- Drew: He led the games for the kids at kids camp.
- Jason: Did the Scripture reading in the morning service and shares his testimony at the youth service.
- Josh P: Was Jesus in the “Everything” skit. He is the team video person, who many of you will benefit from.
- Tony: He is the M.C for the kids camp and shared his testimony at the youth service.
Each team member has done so much more than I have mentioned, but I decided I would highlight some of their work.
- YESTERDAY'S BLOG
When I last left you we were off to have lunch and get ready for our last day of camp. Our team was really tired but ready to give everything they had. Let me tell you that they did...and then some. Five minutes after the camp started it began to rain, and that rain turned into a down pour. This did not stop us one bit. The kids camp was protected from the rain, as they were under the roof of a Fale. The sports camp however, continued on out on the rugby field. We had a blast playing soccer and slipping and sliding everywhere--we were soaked!
Tiffany then shared her testimony with the teenagers on the open field while it was raining :). When camp ended at 5:30 I would not have been surprised to see our team heading back to the house, but this was not the case, as all of them stayed and were involved in everything from a waterballoon fight to volleyball in the mud and yes even a game of baseball. There is so much more to say on this but I now have to wrap things up as I only have a few more minutes.
We have been preparing for the big party tonight and have just added another special feature to our program. Josh is going to perform a drum solo while Tony will be bustin' some moves--this will undoubtedly be the hit of the night. We'll also be doing our skit again--Jenny will sing our anthem and we'll close with a few worship songs. It's going to be a great night. We will then pack and leave for the airport.
Our plane will leave at 1:30 in the morning and we'll be headed to Auckland for a 15 hour layover. We have arranged for a private tour of the city. Drew and I will be boarding an airplane in Auckland heading to the south island to a city called Nelson. This is where I ministered in a church for 2 months 16 years ago. This will be the first time I will have gone back. I am so excited to catch up with everyone and show the place that made a big impact on my life to my 16 year old son. Please be praying for us. Also pray for the rest of the team as they make their way back to the USA.
I need to go now as they are closing the library as I finish.
God bless all of you.
p.s. happy birthday to my now two year old son Easton!! Drew and Dad miss you!