Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Summers and Students and Sweat and Snacks

I know I haven’t blogged much (ahem, at all) this summer. It’s been a crazy one. Good crazy though. This summer I had the chance to travel a ridiculous amount. Among many travel endeavors I was blessed to go with students to Minnesota, Alabama, and the Dominican Republic.
Now, there is something I knew before, but became ridiculously convinced of this summer-- Students are the game changers in the world. They’ll be the ones causing revivals and leading people to Christ. I believe this for many reasons...

1. Students are hilarious. They are creative. They always have snacks. 
Seriously though, just last Sunday I was sitting in church next to a student that had a full bag of gummy bears in his pocket. On another occasion I had a student walking around the church with an ENTIRE BOX of Oreos in his cargo shorts. Imagine how much better the world would be if everyone always carried around and shared their delicious snacks like this.

2. Students do things other people would never do.
On more than one occasion I’ve been around when a high school guy has decided to poop in a body of water that was not a toilet. One time it was in a lake with others around and to this day that kid still gets called Poop Boy (...I may or may not be the one who calls him that.) The other student pooped in the ocean and took to calling it shark sugar. I’m pretty sure he still doesn’t realize sharks weren't impressed or grateful for that generous treat.

Outside of poop, I’ve seen students do things like stick tampons in their nose to stop nose bleeds. I think we can all thank Amanda Bynes’ character in She’s the Man for that trick.* 

3. Students are resilient.
Once upon a time I was at a summer camp and a student brought fireworks. That same student decided it would be in his best interest to shoot those fireworks out of his butt. It was all great in theory, but in practice... he got a little nervous. Here is the moral of the story-- if you’re going to shoot fireworks out of your ass, don’t clench your cheeks because you will get burn marks. Now, if that wasn’t enough, he did this on the first day or two of camp which meant that he still had to go the rest of the week sitting on the ground, often in the sand, and sharing a room with 15 other guys. I don’t know about you, but I don’t know if I could make it.**

On our trip to the Dominican Republic this summer we were fortunate enough to do some construction for a school in the town we were staying in. On the last day after building walls, weeding, and constructing a swing set we had a fiesta for the local ninos. Mind you, this was after a full day of manual labor. At one point my co-intern looked at a student and said, “Dude, I really have no idea how y’all have the energy to be running around this field with kids on your back right now.” He looked back and said, “We don’t.” But that didn’t stop them. Even when students are completely exhausted they push harder and longer than it seems possible. Then, the next morning they get up and do it all over again. 

I firmly believe that when students catch vision of who God is and what he does in our frail human hearts, their passion to share that news becomes unstoppable. I have been blessed over and over again through living life with students. They are brave, they are sassy, and they think things like "Twerk for Jesus" are a good idea.

*I do feel like I need to say I may have been the one to strongly encourage this event. But the point is that I know very few to no adults who would go along with that idea.
**Or maybe this story has nothing to do with being resilient, but sometimes you just need a story about a student shooting fireworks out of his butt.