It has been over a month since we last met in this gym for Campaigners. It has been far too long since we last got to be gathered together with these people. After a three week winter break today we finally returned to school this morning and then to Young Life tonight.
I love standing near the door and greeting the kids as they walk into the basement. I get to see old familiar friends walk in the door, excited to see everyone. Today Gavin, one of my very first students, showed up for the first time. Just a little guy when he was in my class, tonight Gavin towered over me and smiled when he asked, "Do you remember me?"I did remember his name and that he was such a fun and kind kid to have in class. Two sophomore girls showed up tonight for the first time, I'm not sure what prompted them to come but I'm glad that they felt welcome and comfortable enough to share a lot in our group.
These "old kids" rock my socks. These Juniors and Seniors are shaping this community and their enthusiasm and commitment to all of this is so cool. After we finished our small group tonight I was talking to Maddy, a Senior, about how much we continue to grow. It's interesting to compare what people are sharing these days to what they would have said in a small group last year. "We used to talk about the most random things," Maddy said, "but now I feel like people are really getting it, like they want to know more and share what they've learned."
I love that having fun is such a part of this community. Instead of singing tonight we played a game called Ant Tag that had everyone running around the gym and carrying their friends to safety. Being goofy is good for the soul.
I got to sit in the corner of the gym with a group of girls tonight that included Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors. They're coming from all different places-- thinking about picking a roommate for next year at college versus getting back their first round of final grades. But even though their lives are so different we find some common ground in this circle. We're going to work on living out the great commandment-- Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind. Love your neighbor as yourself. We want to be more than just "good" people, more than just another Club. Following Christ should be the difference.
I'm pumped that we've got a whole semester ahead of us as a Young Life family. We've got Campaigners, Clubs, Wyld Life events, service projects, coffee dates, Saturday breakfasts, sporting events, movie nights, birthday parties, random adventures and camp trips this summer. It's not really about what we're doing, but more about who we're doing it all with.