2543 – Total chairs set up for sessions and meals
1225 – 1ft x 1ft sheets of bubble-wrap
1200 – Glow-sticks, glow-necklaces, and glow-bracelets
1181 – Students and adults
200 – 2ft x 2ft x2ft white cardboard boxes
82 – Hilarious minutes spent with comedian Michael Jr.
60+ – 1st time decisions for Christ!
19 – Giant cardboard heads of youth pastors and leaders
10 – Amazing worship sets
8 – Dancers
7 – Great musicians in the worship band, Exodus
4 – Parody videos (“Love the Way You Slide”, (“Flip-Flops”), (“Kalahari, Kalahari”), (“Kalahari Gurls” – stay tuned)
3 – Students sharing their testimony of how God has worked in their lives
2 – Air mattresses ridden across the crowd
1 – Amazing weekend
Have any numbers to add?
I was recently reading through my old Xanga (online journal/diary thing) and came across an entry that I wrote after Kalahari 2007. I had been working as the “Jr. High Guy” for about 4 months and was still getting acclimated to the whole ministry thing.
I had also just quit Darkroom (the band I was in) so I could come work at thechurch. It was one of the hardest decisions of my life because I loved those guys and I loved playing with them. But the cool thing was that I was able to book them to lead worship at our Kalahari Retreat and hang out with them during the weekend.
It’s a little long, but I think it captures (quite accurately) exactly where my heart was at that time. Here we go…
January 22, 2007
This weekend I had a collision of sorts. Not so much of worlds that are, but of a world that is, and a world that could have been. I was sitting in the front row of our Kalahari retreat worshiping with my buddies from Darkroom and I was sitting with some guys from my youth group. And it was as I was singing that the collision occurred. This wasn’t a collision that ended in rubble. It wasn’t a collision that ended in doubt. This collision ended in something a little different.
As I was standing there next to Tim (one of my dudes), I looked at the guys on stage, then I looked at the guys down my row. I looked back at the stage and that’s when it happened. I saw the life that I could have had. I saw the guy on the drums enjoying life and playing with his friends. I saw the guy who piled in a car for 4+ hours with his bandmates for a weekend of music. I saw me.
Then I looked down the aisle and saw the guys from my youth group. I saw some singing, some standing there, and some talking. I looked in the row behind me saw some of my girls with their eyes closed and actually singing; actually worshiping. I looked back down the row and that’s also when it happened. I saw the life that I live. I saw the guy wandering around during meals and talking to his students. I saw the guy making phone calls in his office until 9 o’clock at night trying to get students in those chairs because of the life-changing potenetial of the weekend. I saw me.
And the collision occurred. I saw me, and I saw me. But which one was I? Which one AM I? And I emerged from the collision certain of one thing. I’m certain that I was with the people that are in my heart. It was here that my decision was confirmed and knew I was and am right where I need to be. I looked on stage and saw my band, and I looked around and saw my students. And that was all the confirmation I needed. And when I looked back at the band, I didn’t see me anymore.
I liked playing in a band. I LOVE working with students. That was the difference when I moved to Wooster in September, and it’s the difference TODAY. They’re great and I wouldn’t trade any concert or tour for any of them.