Thursday, August 10, 2006

Float Trip Preparations
Tomorrow I head off to a local river, leading 40 people in a church float trip. It's always a great time, one of the highlights of the year for my youth group. It's also a time when a lot of friends come along, some from no faith traditions, some from different faith traditions. That always makes the worship and devotional times interesting. I have no problem with required worship times--it is a church trip, after all. And, contrary to many Christian traditions, I don't feel a need to make a 'convert tonight or die and go to hell' pitch to everyone who comes. I just want to help them feel God's love and care for them, and to help everyone there see that lived out in our care for each other. I am firmly in St. Francis camp on this one--always preach Christ, if necessary use words. I just believe that the words should best come in response to what has been awakened in someone--yearning, curiosity, even animosity--and not be what comes first.

Anyway, constructing worship--and listening for God's voice in that process--is always interesting for this event. Even more so this year, when I know that several of these kids have had really tough times in the past. Some are truly antagonist toward even the concept of God, and are encouraged to be so by parents with the same attitude. Some have really warped ideas both of who God is and who they are. Some have grown up in the church and, for them, the mystery of God has disappeared, only to become 'white noise.'

Dear God, what a fascinating place you put us in, and what fascinating creatures your children are.

Prayer for today:Bend what is rigid in me, warm up what is frozen in me. (Old prayer quoted on Pray-As-You-Go podcast for Mar. 23, 2006).