I'm guessing a post pregnancy woman just popped into your heads.
Her abdomen stretched so rapidly with the growth of the little baby she was carrying that her skin stretched and left behind off color hues of purple or red but helped produce a precious life.
So my last week - though painful at times, was all worth the life produced in my heart.
Yesterday ended the first week of Immersion. Immersion means we host youth groups for 10 days. 3 days camping for community building, confession, and hearing God speak. Then the next 7 days having teachings and ministry. I was in charge of launching KidsGames, a global program similar to VBS. KidsGames was the ministry opportunity for our Immersion students.
I started planning in May. Emailing partners, attending events to promote, scheduling meetings and deadlines, canvasing the neighborhood, and collecting materials to launch.
After a month of work, I had 20 kids signed up. I lined up enough volunteers for 100 students, and 6 days before the event I was about to have 20 students. It was stressful. I felt God saying we would have 100, yet we only had 20.
We ended up having 70+ kids Day 1. Immersion students all had a place and a purpose leading the little kids. Day 1 was no easy task though. Sharing the vision, explaining the outline for the day, coordinating and delegating 23 antsy high schoolers, and creating an efficient registration process for the parents and kids made for a long first day.
By day 3, the staff had a meeting to check in on each other spiritual, physical, and emotional health so far. I summarized my health like this,
"I have had my faith stretched and expanded and deepened each day this week. I had to trust God to bring the students He spoke about. I had to trust that He would equip high schoolers with the ability to lead West Side kids well. I had to trust that each day would happen how He wanted it to. I had to trust God's conviction on things I needed to change about how I was leading. I had to trust God with it all. And as I did that each day, He blessed me in new ways. Seeing little kids so engaged with the gospel presented through an evangicube, praying, singing 'Trading my sorrows" on the playground to themselves. I prayed that God's kingdom would come to the West Side and His will be done and I am seeing glimpses each day."
I compare my week to stretch marks because even though the week was exhausting, challenging, even painful and uncomfortable at times I wouldn't trade a second of it because of what God did in my life. He breathed more life into my heart this week and is continually transforming me.
There is so many more things about Immersion I wish to share - hopefully I can update different aspects of this first Immersion while leading up to the beginning of Immersion#2!!