sabbatical :: day one

Today is the first day of my sabbatical. ROCKHARBOR is giving every staffer a two week sabbatical that is partially guided but has quite a bit of freedom built in. so, for two weeks, I am going to give up all things RH for the pursuit of rest, joy and development. I can't tell you how excited I am for this. I feel like the last year has been one huge blur...life just goes by too quickly and you can definitely get lost in ministry and begin getting your identity from it...instead of from the one who has blessed you with your ministry. I know that for me, the rest component is huge. I am most excited to just be with very little on my plate. To keep an aspect of adventure, we find out our "assignments" day by day, and have a couple of group days. I do know that we will be reading Life of the Beloved by Henri Nouwen and I'm pretty excited about it. Have I said that I'm very excited about these two weeks?!


my obsession has returned...

somewhere between Easter, work, school and wedding planning, Alex and I have become addicted to 24. Netflix just can't send the discs fast enough for us!! Now, I've been obsessed with the show for years now, but I had never completely seen seasons two and three! Sad, but true. The fun part is that I've gotten Alex hooked and we started over beginning with season one. I own season one, and we blew through that season. We've been renting season two and thus are moving at a much slower pace than we'd like. I am loving the show more than ever and loving Jack Bauer more than ever...i think Alex even has a little man crush! :-)



Easter has officially come and gone, and while I am definitely happy to get back to the normal rhythm of life, I am so excited about all that God has done and is doing through Easter 2008. There are already numerous stories of lives being changed, and it is always a beautiful thing to watch. There was so much going on during all of last week and Easter services in the kids tents were awesome, but I think my favorite part of the entire morning was being in service (even though i got fried) and seeing all of the people come down to the prayer tent after the invitation was given (yes, i kept my eyes open!). Yes, I love kids ministry, and I think it's vital, but at the same time, just imagine how life-changing it will be for the children of the people that accepted Jesus. Their whole world just got rocked. Imagine being a 2 year old and having your parents marriage restored. They might never know (although hopefully one day they'll hear the story) but their life will never be the same. Wow. It is such a privelege to be a part of the very large team that worked on Easter. God is faithful to bring the people, and our volunteers are faithful to carry out the labor...and boy was there labor! We had four 30x30 tents, one 40x40, and two 40x60s! All together we had 762 kids on Easter morning...add the 384 from Good Friday, and we had over 1,000 kids over the course of the weekend. There are certain moments when I'm very humbled to be a part of this amazing team, and this weekend was one of them. Sometimes I still can't believe that I get paid to do this!

Easter was also the anniversary of Alex serving in Children's Ministry. It has been a joy to watch him grow and develop as a teacher and leader over the last year. He pours himself into this ministry in such a self-less way, it's amazing to watch. I am consistently in awe of his servant's heart and desire to serve our Lord. I am lucky to be marrying such an amazing man! God is so good!

Easter at the Pacific Amphitheater has become somewhat of a tradition. This past week has actually been full of traditions...the Wednesday night set-up with volunteers, the Good Friday services, the continuous prayer walk from Friday to Sunday, and of course Easter morning...then...there's the family tradition of getting together at my grandparents' house and eating together. Planning a wedding has also made me look at traditions, only most of the wedding traditions really have no importance to me, and I have begun asking myself, "What's the point?" I understand that some things hold meaning, but should you feel pressured to follow a tradition just because tradition says you should? The more I think about it, the more I want to buck traditions that mean nothing to me.


easter week...

...has officially begun!! it was a little overwhelming, but this year everything feels way more organized and thought through...possibly because I've been on staff a whole lot longer!

On Tuesday we loaded up the truck and yesterday, we unloaded and set up all 7 of the tents! We had a huge volunteer presence which was AWESOME!! Friday we'll have our 3 Good Friday services at noon, 4 and 5:30, and then we'll load up truck #2 with all of our toys and head over to the Fairgrounds again on Saturday morning to unload and finish up some details.

I can't explain how excited I am to help bring Jesus to Orange County. If you know of anyone that needs an Easter service to attend sent them to oceaster.com, or send them up to the Fairgrounds at 9 or 11:15a on Sunday!


perfect for today.....

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. Romans 8:26



today has been a long day to say the least. some friends of mine are hurting as am i, but at the end of the day (now!!) I know my God is big and powerful and sovreign. he is mighty and gentle and his spirit moves.

again, i feel like life is moving at an incredible speed, yet it's still not May!! Alex and I are super anxious to get married, but at the same time we are enjoying every second that we are able to spend with each other. This semester has been tricky with Alex in school three nights a week...i've been babysitting at least two nights a week and that adds on the fun! but...even in all the busyness, we are coming along well with wedding plans, and i've been TRYING to catch up with friends...which isn't working so well, but i did get to see Steph and the kiddos last week so that was a plus. Maliah started T-Ball and so we were able to catch the opening day game....it was SOOO cute to see all of them out on their miniature field! Alex took lots of pics, here are a couple ::

and in the midst of everything, Easter is coming up so fast i can't even think straight! we took our traditional trip to LA to buy decor items for the tents...yes, we do Easter with hundreds of kids in tents!! Last year i had one 40x80 tent for preschool, and this year i have one 40x80, one 40x60, and one 30x30! I am super excited to see all of the kids that come, and all of the families that will come to Easter at the OC Fairgrounds. And of course, it holds a special place in my heart since I met Alex at Easter set-up last year! who would have guessed that one year later we'd be planning our wedding!!...