Still In A Field In Fielding.

So… when is breaking the rules not breaking the rules? We’re at a christian summer festival.. where you can leave the site without permission unless you’re over 18. You’re not allowed drugs or alcohol on site.

So when one of my students left the site and went for a walk, walked into a pub and ordered a drink, then came back to the camp…. he didn’t break any of the rules.

But we all know that the spirit of the rules was broken. Uhoh. What do you do with that?

Soul Survivor In Brief

It’s such a great privilege to be at an event that I’m not responsible for anything at. It’s also a great privilege to be on the prayer team etc, and to see so many people that I know and love here.. especially to see something that is such a big part of Sam‘s world unfolding. It’s a great team of people and I’m enjoying meeting more and more of them.

It’s almost impossible for me to be at something like this and not reflect, assess, wonder and analyse. It’s so instinctive.. that I just can’t switch it off very often. Even at Passion and NYWC… I’m always thinking about ‘the stuff’.

1. It’s hot and dry during the day and the temperature drops quickly at night. It reminds me of April Easters at Finlay Park.
2. Service projects to the Fielding community including weeding gardens, cleaning windows and painting fences, mostly for those who are unable to do it for themselves. Split up into small groups of two or three and dropped off around the city. Worship for those participating? Yes… and especially beautiful for those who are organisers to drive around the city and see people at work making a difference. Making a difference for what though? Darryl’s seminar immediately following? Ironic timing.
3. The scheduling is interesting – seminars first in the morning, then a general session at 11am – which makes for a lot of people sweltering in a tent in the middle of the day. There’s little other entertainment or activity during the day apart from sessions & seminars, but the programme is chockablock across two minor venues and hang out zones after the evening session.
4. Nothing is compulsory, but if you’re not in the main sessions – there’s nothing to do.. so is it really as free as all that? Social engagement? Fun stuff?
5. I’m not sure what I was expecting in terms of demographic – Probably more young adults in the 18+ age group. But the kids here are great kids.
6. My Baptist background is starting to wrestle a little bit with the Anglican/New Wine heritage – mostly when it comes to the expectations or approach to prayer ministry, Holy Spirit spaces and expectations on manifestation. I’m thinking too much. Ugh.
7. Being a firsttimer, there’s not heaps and heaps of info to get your head around – and not necessarily a lot of connection points – it’s definitely SS doing ministry with your people – and your relationship and connection to SS plays a big part in the flavour and how that plays out. Not necessarily good or bad, just interesting to observe.
8. As a slightly older young adult (just wanted to use an oxymoron of some sort).. it’s a lonely experience when my group is so small and relatively disconnected – they’re not feeling it as much as I am, which is funny cos I’m sharing a tent with one of my dearest and oldest friends. But it’s community I long for.

So far it’s been an interesting time. I’m wrestling with real feelings of loneliness and sadness at being here with so few of my community. It’s a glorious reminder of why I love youth ministry and why I hate being alone here .. I wish that there were another 15 people here, as well as young adults. More of a community that we could journey through the issues of social justice and faith in action.

Darryl Gardiner’s seminar today on Justic in the here and now was insightful – mainly because he addressed the ministry of reconciliation that we are all called to – reconciliation to God, to others, to ourselves and to the world around us. He also addressed the difference between social justice and social concern… something that is important to consider in light of today’s service projects and the practical toolbox stuff that I’m trying to put together for Eastercamp.

Stress levels are high – there is so much to do for Easter and Parachute and it all has to happen in the next ten days.. and I’m here in a field in Fielding.

BUT… I love being in the presence of good God-loving people.

STILL — Mark, Bernie, Tim, Steve… I miss your guitar lines, Jono – I miss your keys. Definitely miss my bass boys too. Oh yeah. I love playing music and can’t wait to get into the year.

What do you think?