Monday, August 16, 2010

Cleveland Mission Trip: Day 3

Jaime and her son
Today we flip-flopped the teams.  I took the other group down to the City Mission.  Lisa and Deb took the other team down at Laura’s Home.  Both teams did a lot of outside work.  On the downtown property there are a lot of trees!  Many of the branches were quite long and needed to be trimmed back.  There were also some dead branches that needed to be taken out.  So we attacked the trees!  This brought back memories of the Junior High trip last Summer were all we did was eliminated Honeysuckle.  But this job was not as brutal.  It was a relatively easy landscaping job.  At one point we got Mitch up in a tree to try and get at some branches and this provided an easy target for many of us guys!

At lunch time the teens got to hear some of the same stories from the men living in the City Mission that shared yesterday.  It was powerful. 

Once we were done, we headed back over to Laura’s Home to get the rest of our team.  The teens there spent time disinfecting all of the toys in the kids rooms and helping with many of the flowerbeds and spending time with the kids.  We got to meet some of the kids and let them know that the next day we were all going to spend the day with them.  They were excited and looking forward to it.

That evening we had a very special chapel time as a group.  Our teens lead us in worship and then Jaime Buxton spoke to the teens.  Now let me remind you that Jaime came through my first youth group.  She did a phenomenal job in telling her story of growing up through high school, college, single and married life and how God has impacted her through all of the stages.  She was very vulnerable in explaining how it was very easy for her to live in two different worlds in high school: her “party” life as a popular cheerleader and her “religious” life as a youth group member.  She talked through how those two worlds eventually collided and she realized that she had to make a choice between those two identities.  She described how she finally committed herself 100% to follow Christ.  Since then, God has used her throughout college, and as a missionary in Belize and now as a youth pastor and social worker in Cleveland

I have always wanted to get Jaime to speak to the youth group but I always knew that her life was to crazy to be able to get away and come down to Cincinnati.  So this was a dream come true for me.  She also brought her husband Sean, their son who is 3, and 2 of their youth group girls who apparently wanted to know if we had any cute guys.  I did not hear the verdict on that mission but I am sure there was moderate success in their opinion. 

It was a good day!

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