Each summer for the past six years I have gone on some sort of big trip. Those trips range from summer camp to a conference with my church to a big family vacation to a mission trip out of the country. This summer, however, I didn’t really have the time to go on a big trip due to a few different factors, and when the summer started I was kind of bummed. I spent the summer so far looking at pictures from my friends in all the different countries they were traveling, to explore or serve and I felt like my summer was meaningless. After all, it seemed like I was only working and spending time with my friends. But, as I reflect back over my last week and summer so far, that is not the case at all. I went to summer camp with the junior high kids at church back in June, I went to an apartment complex down the street to play with kids one week, and I’ve been staying at people’s homes and watching their animals so they can have a vacation. All in all, I wasn’t just working and hanging out with friends. I was serving, in a bunch of different ways.
This last week I spent a lot of my free time helping set up for my church’s vbs. I don’t know how many hours I was at the church sitting or standing as I painted murals, put together trees, decorated the stage, helped get things ready in the preschool room, or even practiced the motions and songs for the week. I spent the last week in service, on my own mission trip right here in Fresno. Sure I’m not going out of the country to share God’s word, because instead I am sharing God’s love and word with kids in town that need to hear it just as much as kids in another country.
This last week was kind of crazy to say the least. It was nice having the week off from work, but it isn’t like I had nothing to do. I was still busy. However, I managed to make significant progress on one of my projects and sleep quite a bit which was much needed.
The week started out like any other, going to church and participating in the worship service. Sometimes participating is by sitting and listening, other times by helping out in some way, but this week it was by helping lead worship. The church band that I sing in played last week in worship for the youth report Sunday, and I really enjoyed it. As we practiced, I wasn’t too convinced but while singing and seeing the kids’ faces while we worshipped, all the practice was worth it. I caught up with a few of my friends on Monday and Tuesday, Wednesday was busy with church meetings, and Thursday was to be as well, but I got the stomach flu. It slowed me down and definitely put me out of commission for the next three days. I was kind of disappointed, but because I wasn’t moving 100 miles a minute, I was able to be there for people who needed me most.
I found out Thursday morning that Nicolas, a friend from FPU was in a serious car accident that has since left him in a coma and needing very serious procedures. Since I was lying down with nothing to do, I was able to inform friends and classmates of his what was going on. The outpouring of support has been incredible and it goes to show that the students, faculty, and staff at Fresno Pacific are more than just familiar faces, but rather a family. I’d like to ask again that you pray for Nicolas and his family as his family and friends are looking for a miracle to restore Nicolas to his healthy self.
As the week came to a close, I broke down realizing how precious life is and how each day given to us is a gift and not a right. I’ve enjoyed the time I had off, but I’m looking forward to this new week and what it will bring. With the new opportunities, new friendships, and new perspectives, who wouldn’t look forward to the upcoming week?