Wednesday, May 31, 2006

R & R & Rock Climbing!!!

Patrick belaying Dustin with Crystal looking on.....they knew what they were doing!

So...back to work this week...but last weekend was total veg out for me. I tried to figure when the last time was that i spent a day and did nothing......i got back as far as March and thought i better stop there. But this last weekend was great! I think i spent over 20 hours on Friday and Saturday in my bed, either sleeping or just doing nothing!

We had a daily devotional today before we started work which focused on the importance of having a day off each week. I thought to myself "Hmmmm, maybe having two is a little self indulgent!", but i definately justified that thought with everything that has happenned in the last month.....or two.

Kristin and John Frey

On Monday (memorial day over here), i went rock climbing with a bunch of the kids from the youth group at this indoor rock climbing center called Stone Moves. It was awesome! We were there for about 2 and a half hours.....and it rocked!! (pardon the pun). I got to hang out with the kids a little more and get to know some of the guys that worked at the place....they were all real cool, and could do some pretty amazing stuff on the walls. One of the guys was telling us how he could get to the top of a wall in four moves......after a few laughs from us, he went over to the wall.....and did it. We were all pretty impressed.

I've really found myself struggling with this idea of balancing work and rest. I'm in a position where i love my job so much, that it doesn't really feel like work, and that i'm working 12 hour days without even thinking twice about it. I guess it's because i haven't really found a social scene here in Houston yet.....or a group of guys i can go shoot hoops with or hang with. But i get the feeling that even if i had that, i'd still want to be at work, in the youth room, or just getting things done.

Me trying to tight-rope walk....i didn't get very far!

I get this image of me as a candle, with a fire burning at one end , yet knowing that there is an end to the wick. Is youth ministry just like that? You just work untill all of your energy. or your enthusiasm just comes to an end , when you're out of wax (whatever that represents)? All i know for know is that i'm loving my job, learning that i need to pace myself and living an experience that i'll remember for the rest of my life. Praise God!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Brenton "Soccer Mum" Jayatilaka

So it has begun....the craziness that is Summer. But as you might be able to has been a lot of fun so far. The car pictured above, is my vehicle for the summer - one that the church that I am at have so graciously provided me with. It has been dubbed "the Church Mini-Van" and I am it's "Soccer Mum". After i discovered that i was going to fill this position for the summer, i figured i'd "pimp" the car out with soccer mum apparell. I'll leave a list of all the stuff i put in it at the can probably see most of it from the pics.

(^^^Like the soccer mum sticker!). My other job (as a youth pastor intern!) has been just amazing. For instance, i worked 13 hours yesterday (9-10) and i didn't even realize it untill i came home! I know i'm going to have to slow it down a little otherwise i might burn out....but i'm just having so much fun. I got to meet so many of the youth on Sunday, and even participate in a Ping Pong tournament fundraiser that the youth were holding! My first match was against the senior pastor (Glenn Wilkerson), and i beat him 15-4!!! Afterward he gave me a big hug and welcomed me to the church! But he did say that he's never seen anyone that didn't care so little for his job security!!

I've been living with Patrick and Mary-Beth Kelley, who have been two of the sweetest people i've met since i've been here. They have pretty much accepted me as a part of their family since i got here. They have provided me with a room and have shown me the love of Christ everytime i've been with them (unfortunately, it hasn't been too much...tonight is the first night i've been home before 10pm in 4 days!). I have truly been blessed with this oppurtunity, and I'm so happy just to be able to be in the position to be in a job where i am paid to share God's love. I hope that all full time ministers can remember this at some point in their careers, as it really is God's grace at work.

So i know you've been anxiously waiting to read how "pimped" out my car here's the list:
- Ultra-bright windshield sun protector
- Smiley face antenna ball
- Soccer Mum sticker (all important)
- Overuse of in-car air-freshners (i have two....and yes, it smells like a flower garden)
- Chalk on the windows reading "Cy Creek Going to State!!"
- Eratic driving on the highways (just kidding!!!)

I hope all that reads is having a great summer (or winter, back home!) and please let me know how everything is going! *Leave a comment*!!!

God Bless "Ya'll"!

P.S. Check out the new Youth Blog I helped make for our youth group here in Houston:

Thursday, May 18, 2006

From Graduation to Dallas

What an incredible month it has been! It has been so busy, but so rewarding. I've had friends visit from Australia, finished up with school, GRADUATED, and had my Dad and Step Mum come and visit for a week! But so much more has happenned.....I had a beautiful reception after graduation, where my family from all over the world were able to meet...some for the first time.
I was able to take my Dad and Step Mum to Kansas City and show them the Plaza and the Blue Room; to Highland to meet the family up there and finally to Dallas to see some friends i made last summer.

Everything has gone off without a hitch, and i sit here marvelling at how blessed I have been. There have been several moments this week where I've had to stop and catch myself wondering what life would be like without all these oppurtunities and priveliges. I don't think i've had more than 5 hours of sleep a night for the last night, just because i've been doing things that i enjoy doing.....not because i have to work, or commit to an obligation...but purely because i am just enjoying life and who i am at the moment.

I really believe that this is one of God's greatest gifts He provides us: when we finally feel blessed with who we have become....even if it is for a brief moment. I've had these moments every now and then in my life.....but it really feels like i've been riding this wave of blessing for about a month. However...I am still restless. I still feel like i am grabbing and reaching for more examples of Christ's life like a kid in a candy store. I still want to share the Gospel with all that I meet....but more as an example, rather than a preacher. I find myself constantly reveiwing my actions in a positive light.....and learning more from my mistakes.

On Saturday, I will take another step in my life's journey, and travel to Houston to begin my youth pastor internship at Cypress Creek Christian Church. I will be there for three months learning and gaining experience in full-time ministry, and truly find if this is where God wants me in my life. I am so excited at the prospect of spending three months with a new group of highschoolers, getting to know them and sharing the Gospel with them. With all this going on though...i can't help but stop to think of all my friends and family i'll be leaving behind for a little while....I'm going to miss everyone so much...please keep in touch!

~God, i can't praise you enough for all that you do in my life. I don't know what i did to deserve this blessed life, but i know that Your Son has provided the Way for me. I thank you Jesus for all that you have saved me from, and pray that you would continue to bless the lost, downtrodden and impoverished. I love you Lord. Amen~

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Ode to Human Ingenuity

Well done mortal men!
We have done very well!
We have captured the essence of heaven,
And conquered the depths of hell!

We have built buildings high
And discovered seas low
We have allowed man to fly
And made it a great show!

We have pondered great thought
And philosophized deep theory
Our minds can think not
Of the limit to our creativity!

Let us boast to the degree
That all of gravity can hold
Let me flick on the switch
So that all of us can see

Whoops! I forgot to change the light bulb!