this past week i was able to do something that i have wanted to do for years … be the worship speaker at a world changers project.
for those of you who aren’t familiar with world changers let me briefly explain what one is. imagine taking a typical youth bible camp (worship gatherings, eating together, free time, meeting new people, etc.) and marrying it to a habitat for humanity project. kids go to a world changers project to join with other groups and work on houses that the local city says need work. sometimes it is painting other times it is roofing, and other times it involves special projects (i.e. ramps, etc.). as a youth minister i took kids to about 12ish projects. i’ve been the group leader at projects from houston, texas to murphy, north carolina and i have pretty much loved them all.
i don’t normally ask people to invite me to speak but i made an exception to that tendency when i heard that the minnesota/wisconsin baptist convention would have its first world changers project this year. i immediately asked if they would consider me as the speaker for the project. i am thankful that the world changers leadership decided that i would fit the bill.
i spent the week in dultuh getting to know some wonderful teens and adults, as well as the great summer staff and gordon davidson, the project coordinator, who worked out all the logistics of the project.
so here are a few thoughts from the project:
- duluth is not meant to be as hot as it was last week. all the southerners that were there, except for me, thought it was great. i’ve become acclimated to the cooler summers. i was looking forward to what should have been cooler weather. in the photo above you will see sweat stains on my shirt. that is because the church we were using for evening worship gatherings has no A/C.
- every now and then i really miss having a more active role in youth ministry. this past week was one such time.
- every now and then i realize that i don’t miss the schedule that is required of youth ministers. this past week was one such time. ;)
- this was the first project in duluth as well as in the MWBC. i think it went really well for the first time. obviously there are things that can be done better but i think it was a really good first attempt. i hope the project coordinator from this year comes back for next year because i think he will make it even better. things will only be better next year.
- for some reason odd things happen around me in duluth. i had 3 odd interactions with police while i was there. 1st i went to a world changers work project only to see 5 police cars arrive because two people had OD’d in the house across the street. then i went for an early lunch at a wonderful local coney island place in downtown duluth right when the feds and local police decided to raid a “head shop” which made for an interesting spectacle while i ate two wonderful coney’s. finally i went running on the lake trail only to have to run down an ambulance for a man that had been found passed out on the trail. you probably shouldn’t stand too close to me in duluth.
- the only real criticism i have of the project is something that everyone in leadership agreed with and that is that having the guys stay in a building 6 miles away wasn’t the best. of course, it wasn’t planned that way. it just worked out that way when the original plan went off the tracks.
SIDE NOTE – while i don’t ask people to invite me to be there speakers (there is more of this in the world of youth ministry than you would expect) i am definitely not opposed to speaking at youth ministry thingies. in fact i love it. so if you ever do want to invite me please know that i would gladly come and hang out with you and your teens.