July 31, 2011

Champ Kind here reporting on behalf of the summer spent with VCSM!  First off there is only one word to describe the past 3 months…Whammy!  There is something special about a team that spends the summer together ministering to the students of the Valley Church Community and Beyond, all the while doing well to impersonate the Channel 4 News Team.  There are times when we may not take ourselves too seriously, but what we are serious about is our love for the students and the opportunity to encourage them to develop a relationship with God, to Take God Seriously!

I cannot thank the students enough for the way they have embraced a 29 year old intern as I was focused on seeking a more permanent role in Student Ministry.  Today was my last official day with Valley Church and even though I will no longer be spending time as a part of the ministry team at Valley Church, it is my hope that I am able to reconnect with many of these students into the future!  Even though it is hard to move on and step into my new role as Director of Student and Children’s Ministry at Lutheran Church of Hope-Ankeny, the opportunity this summer has been a sign of affirmation that God has created me to spend time ministering to youth!

At Underground Worship today many of the students shared their sincere & funny soundbites of how they will remember me…my soundbite for remembering the students, “Whammy!”  Needless to say, I don’t have a simple soundbite to share with you that describes the experience had this summer to connect with the students and the friendships that were created.  I would rather share with you in person more about my experiences this summer and what I saw from the students at Valley Church and their exhibit of Faith and Fellowship.

Lastly, to the Team from Channel 4, there is much learned from the experiences this summer as we discussed over Chik-fil-a on Thursday.  We had a great team with dynamic abilities and pushed one another to provide opportunities for the Students to be in fellowship with a solid community and create friendships with Christ followers.  I want to thank my team for the ways they challenged me to evaluate my strengths and areas of improvement as a team member and a future Youth Minister.  I also know that I have friends that can provide insight and wisdom into the challenges I will face as I continue to minister to youth!  Thank you VCSM for a great summer!  Thank you to all the students who welcomed me immediately and embraced this old intern guy!  Today was an opportunity to celebrate the next part in my journey…as I continue to follow where God Leads!

A Day Inspired

July 1, 2011

Do you ever start your day feeling inspired?  Where does that come from?  What is the source?  Wednesday I woke up around sunrise, hopped on the Road Bike, and spun my legs for 20 miles.  The joy in this was the crisp morning air, the sun rising and the empty roads.  Despite having tired legs, I felt energized and refreshed to start the day!  After hopping off the bike, I quickly showered, made a PB Sandwich, and loaded the golf clubs in the car to play 9 at Willow Creek with the Thompson Brothers, Kyle & Ryan, and my intern counterpart, Ric Radcliffe.  What a great way to start a day!

As I thought about it, this day started off similar to that of a friend of mine, Brandon Henkels, who on Tuesday had done a workout and started on 9 holes prior to 10am!  We had talked about it Tuesday night during our softball game.  Thank you Henks for the inspiration to start a day with some fun and joy!  I was inspired all day, by a decision to take advantage of a nice morning and treat my body with a bit of exercise, closely followed by time on the course with Students in our Ministry at Valley Church.

I wake up on a daily basis and look for inspiration from God himself.  I like the quiet time to think and talk to God when on my bike or on a run!  Of course other thoughts go through my mind, but I am often inspired by the “Big Man”.  Now the real inspiration we should all be looking for comes from the Word of God, as noted in 2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives.  It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.  God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”  Something I need to work on is getting into the Word more consistently and finding the inspiration that comes from Scripture!

We often need inspiration to push through challenges, but I believe we also need inspiration to live each day to the fullest.  Wednesday was one of those days that I utilized inspiration from a friend, from my Relationship with God, and time with Students during our weekly summer study.  On Wednesday my thoughts were directed at how I have been challenged to live a God-breathed life, as Pastor Mike has talked about in multiple messages at Luterhan Church of Hope.  He has discussed how Scripture is inspired / in-spiritu / God-breathed.  If we believe in who God is, are we looking to him for inspiration through his Word on a daily basis?  The inspiration that I received on Wednesday from God, energized me to reach out t0 many students during our study and an after-hours bonfire.  A big win was having a student that I invited earlier in the day that joined us for the Study and bonfire!  Praise God for the Inspiration He gives and the way He works in our lives!  What Scripture will inspire you today?  How will God inspire you today?