Putting Together My “Crazy Love” Puzzle

I keep recommending Crazy Love by Francis Chan and I do recommend the book.  But I think there’s a bigger picture brewing that has me so excited about it.  I could start the story when I stood inside a Books a Million and spotted it on the shelves among other recommended books but I think I’ll start a few years back.

This is a long one but a good one…

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Recap of Winter Jam 2009 – Charlotte

We were able to figure out the kids being juggled between our parents (thanks, ya’ll!) and were happy to be off at 4 yesterday for the concert.  Toby Mac was the headline artist and I’ve been a fan of his since the early 90s during his DC Talk days.  I thought I’d never seen him but I remembered going to a concert at a church in Charlotte sometime when I was in high school I think.  I definitely hadn’t seen him since he went solo.

By the time we got there, the doors were already open although we heard a few of our college students had been there since 1:30 and had 4th row seats.  The youth group had to go to the upper deck to sit together.  Scott and I and another couple in the youth group moved to be more centered on the stage.  A few minutes in our seats, and the college students text us and say they have 4 open spots.  Yippee!

The only downside was that we only had our zoom lens assuming we’d be far away so all of our pictures are REALLY close up.  From 4th row, I couldn’t get any wide shots at all.  No complaining…just sayin.

So here’s the line-up.

Pure NRG.  These kiddos were helping to promote PreciousGirlsClub.com, a web site for girls…Emma was already signed up there.  Their performance was….well organized yet….peppy.  I didn’t even upload a picture of them I just realized.

Stephanie Smith.  She was cute as a button (see tutu) and definitely has a big voice.  She sang a prayer type song mid-way through the concert and it was amazing. We were still up in the upper deck at this point and I took a picture from the megatron thingy.

Francesca Battistelli. I didn’t get to hear her because I went and ate. Friggin’ $17 for chicken, small fries and a drink. Rip-off. I did hear a lot how pretty she was when I got back. Sorry, that’s all I got. LOL

NewSong sang some great worship songs. I’ve seen them several times in concert. I still love that Nate Sallie is singing with them. I love him! They also sang Arise, My Love and man, that song gets you every time.

Hawk Nelson came out and I have seen them a time or two before as well. Every Little Thing is still my favorite of theirs. They are really fun on stage.

Brandon Heath came out and WOW I was really impressed with him. If you listen to Christian music you might recognize a few of his songs..”I’m Not Who I Was” and “Give Me Your Eyes”. They played a video during that one and it was very thought-provoking.

Finally Toby Mac and his band Diverse City came out and WOW. They did not stop from beginning to end. I may as well and get this out of the way and say Toby looked OLD. And if not old, VERY tired. I wanted to tell him to drink some water and go to bed. See?

Turns out he’s 44. Man, does that make ME feel old?! But he’s still cute as a button when he smiles.

The show was a ton of fun.

And Toby ended it well by jumping it to the crowd at the end. Scott caught him mid air.

Overall a very good concert.  Toby Mac was definitely the star of the show and made the night.

I’ve uploaded all my videos although I haven’t labeled them all.

If you’d like to see all the (very upclose) pictures we took, have at it.

Costume Party 2008

We had a really good time at the costume party for our youth group last night.  All the leaders actually got into it.  In fact, we had great participation across the board.  I changed my costume a bit last minute. I had planned to wear a dress and heels but it was just too cold and I didn’t want to be uncomfortable.  I also had fake eyelashes that wouldn’t stay on.  But, it was enough to tell what I was.   The lighting and therefore pictures were REALLY bad since they had no lights except for blacklights.  It’s hard to see the blood I had on my chin and my eyes were a lot darker than I normally do them.

Scott actually won the costume contest.  He had (fake) sound effects and all.  They hooked up his machine to the sound system so randomly you’d hear it all across the room.  He was so proud.

And I just have to stick this one on the end…Darian (my first Twilight convert) and I huddled on the couch with our Twilight series books and discussed!

Youth Camp 2008 Pictures

First, if you checked my tweets at twitter at all while I was gone, you’d know I thought that the Wake Forest campus was beautiful.  Let me show you a few pictures..

The first thing we saw was the Wait Chapel


This is inside Wait Chapel where we had all our services.  Each side was lined with 5 or 6 of these big windows that let in the morning and evening light perfectly.


Flowers were everywhere and gorgeous


Here are a pair of buildings at night.  Not sure what they’re used for but they’re attached to some dorms.


Now the next pictures are a lot of ME but I assure you we took over 600 pictures and the minority are of me but I don’t want to go plastering people’s pictures on my blog so you’re stuck with just me :)

The kids teased me because yes, I did end up on my phone a lot.



I actually did participate though…here’s on one of the rec days.  I’m the one climbing on top


Here I am actually running playing ultimate frisbee..I’m on the far left in the full running pose.  That building behind us holds the cafeteria.


See all those kids rolling on the ground?  That’s our STOP, DROP AND ROLL deal we had all week.  It really was hilarious.


And here, let me show you where I got dumped on on Water Day.

First, I run.  And they chase me.


And then they catch me while everyone looks on


While I say Nooooo!


And they dump not one…


….but two buckets of water on me.




I’m officially drenched


Somehow I keep the glass on though


They love me anyway…


…but still can’t get enough…I get picked to get sprayed with a water gun in the next game.


By the end, I had fallen off my stool, still drenched and I think trying to hide in the grass.  It didn’t work did it?


I’m ok though!  Still smiling!


Pizza that night makes it all better.


And there you have it.  Amy at Youth Camp 2008.


Youth Camp Recap

I’ve been putting this post off the entire week and weekend because I knew it could get really long if I let it.  In fact, I’m going to skip the pictures for this one just so I can get this much posted.

I have yet to pick a word which can sum up the week.  Most of the youth say “awesome” or “amazing” but I just can not use words like that.  In all honesty, last week was HARD.  The past two years we had our old youth pastor and his wife and I get along quite well.  We were roomies for one year and for both years, hung out with one another quite a bit.  This year, I was the only female chaperone.  It made it lonely and stressful at times. Don’t get me wrong, we had awesome and amazing moments but as a whole, I’m not sure.

See, I don’t like confrontation.  And when something arose this week, all signs pointed to me as the responsible adult.  I had to listen to the complaint, decide how to handle it and then actually handle it.  Yeah, I had to be an actual “youth leader” this week.

And it wasn’t easy.

There was the

“naked girls in the bathroom” complaint,

“your youth was throwing up in our bathroom and stole our trash can” complaint,

“your kids need to throw their cups and plates away” complaint,

“don’t push around the chairs because you might break the legs” complaint,

“that girl is mouthing things to our boys” complaint,

“her shorts are too short” complaint,

“they’re being too loud and i’m the bus driver and need my beauty sleep” complaint.

Plus add in acting as a alarm clock in the morning, the buzz-kill at lights-out time at night and the one and only female counselor for all 15 or so girls, well, I was a frazzled mess.

I think it was Monday night I just cried into my pillow wondering why in the world I had left my family and spent a ton of money to make up for my time off to come do this.

Of course it’s clear that God changed lives while we were there and there needed to be some female chaperone there.  But I really think it wasn’t just the kids that grew.  I learned how to accept complaints and deal with them, how to gently correct someone, how to get things done that needed done.  I really think I grew a little more backbone this week.

So that’s all about me.

As for the week, it was normal camp stuff…breakfast, morning service, bible study, lunch, rec time, dinner and evening service.  My favorite times were on Thursday afternoon.  The first was during our water day.  The kids basically rotated through 8 games that had to do with water.  Everyone got soaked.  They decided to steal my camera and dump two buckets of water on me.  Then I was the target of water guns in the next game.  I was dripping by the time we left but that was definitely the best time I’d had all week.  Seems sort of backwards right?  After that we all went and played a game of ultimate frisbee and that was so much fun!  I’ve never played before and we were all in such a good mood and everyone was playing together and I really think it was a bonding moment for all of us.

Thursday evening Todd Agnew stayed up on stage singing so long Dave Edwards didn’t even get to speak.  We all just worshiped God for like 2 hours.  It was an amazing time.

We did have some drama though.  We had one girl who was hyperventilating at service after crying so hard and had to be taken to the hospital.  We also had four girls who ended up with the stomach virus.  That was fun.  I was woken up at 6:15 one morning and had to go down 3 flights of stairs just to listen to someone puke a few times all while trying to decide whether to call her mom or WHAT to do with her.  I’m telling you, this adult thing SUCKS (sorry, Mom, it just does).

One funny thing though was our “STOP, DROP AND ROLL” moments.  Somehow it got started at camp and a leader would call out really loudly stop, drop and roll and the ENTIRE youth group would drop to the ground and then roll over a time or two.  It made for some HILARIOUS moments when there was a large crowd.  I think other youth groups either that we were crazy or a little jealous we had something cool to do.  A couple other kids in other groups started doing it with us.  It was kind of funny.  I think the majority just thought we were a tad immature and maybe we all are!

I’ll try to get some pictures up soon because the ones from water day are just great.  Thankfully the girl who took my camera actually took some pictures.

In closing I can say I’m glad I went.  The speaker and Todd Agnew were really good (although he did spend the entire time only singing like 3 songs).  I saw people make decisions for Christ.  I even saw a leader completely step up and come out of their shell through the week.  I grew as a person and got to experience God move like I hadn’t in awhile.  And to me, that’s worth it.