Sunday, July 31, 2011

Heading Back

Time flies when you're having fun, and I have most definitely had a blast this summer. Csehy ended yesterday, and some very tearful goodbyes were said. It was my heart-felt joy to have been able to be a part of the lives of these kids even tho it was a very short time. They were amazing, and wonderful, and talented and I miss them already. Yes, they are human too, but I was so encouraged to see so many teens who were seriously seeking to please God with their lives. You're probably thinking, "well, isn't this a music camp, full of lots of little (and not so little) music nerds/enthusiasts, etc.?" While the answer to that, is a resounding yes, you should also know that in addition to music, we are intently focused on the spiritual journeys of our students as well. The greatest desire of my heart is that 1) each camper will have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and 2) that each one will leave camp looking more like his Savior than he did when he arrived. One young man recommitted his life to Christ, and others are sharing freely about the difference that He is making in their lives. They truly desire to live differently, and to stay open to Christ's work in their lives. Please pray that they will do so, and have the strength to follow through. 
It's a family thing: me and my amazing siblings after the last Csehy concert. I love them!!
So now what? Well, today my family and I drove back to our home in and NJ, and as I write, I am sitting in my living room looking at a successfully (for now...) unpacked and repacked suitcase. Tomorrow, I fly out to Germany for my second year as an RA at BFA. I will again be serving at Sonne, and am so excited to work with the staff and students there again. For the first few weeks, we have a time of orientation (which I am slightly late for, due to camp), and the students arrive at the end of August. Please pray for me as I travel, get over jet-lag, and settle in to things again. Also, please pray for renewed energy, strength and enthusiasm. I am so thankful for having such clear continued direction in my life. If you recall, about a year ago, this was all incredibly new, and I was just beginning the support-raising process. Now, a year later, He is taking me confidently back. To God be the glory, great things He has done!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Simply Trusting: Csehy Week 5 - Struggles and joys

Simply Trusting: Csehy Week 5 - Struggles and joys: "It’s not really the end of July, is it? I can hardly believe that this summer has flown by so quickly. The 5 weeks spent at Csehy are nearly..."

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Csehy Week 5 - Struggles and joys

It’s not really the end of July, is it? I can hardly believe that this summer has flown by so quickly. The 5 weeks spent at Csehy are nearly finished, and this makes me very sad. Each year, I am more aware of and involved with what goes on behind the scenes. I enjoy helping and watching things work from the inside and trying to help things run efficiently. I also love the personal interaction I am able to have here with the students, staff and faculty. Many of the faculty and staff have become mentors to me and have spent significant time investing in me. Working with the counselors is also one of my great joys. Each one brings so many strengths and abilities to the team, and I am continually encouraged and built up by being around them.  I am personally encouraged by the love that they each have for their campers. Each night we pray as a group. This time of prayer is an intense time of praying and sharing burdens. Many nights there are tears both of struggle and joy. They are a very special group of people. I asked several of the counselors to share why they love Csehy, and what they struggled with. Here is what they said:

“The fellowship, the people that are here. As a camper, I didn’t really see that. But this each year I see it and my need for it more clearly.” – Philip, counselor office assistant

“I love the campers and the interaction with them, and the interaction we can have. Also the whole counselor dynamic and the group. The first week was challenging because I felt that there was a lot I didn’t know about or know enough about.” – Aimee, 1st year counselor

“[I love] The opportunity to have a super-boosted time of growth because here you can step away from life and have time with God. You can step away from the things that are normally a distraction from your relationship with God.” Shawn, counselor

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Summer Happenings

Before the whole summer flies by, I want to give a quick update. I have some thoughts to share with you about transitioning, endings and beginnings, but for now facts will have to suffice J After a busy but successful finish to the school year, I returned home and enjoyed some much-needed down time with my family both immediate and church. Again I was amazed with the love and support of those supporting me. It was truly a joy to share about the ministry of BFA with everyone at home. I was privileged to share about BFA with my church family and I have to admit that I was a bit nervous. I knew that they were excited to hear about it, but BFA is a new ministry to my church family. I wanted to give an accurate picture of life there, so they could understand and know better how to pray. God was so good, and through showing lots of pictures and stories about the guys and our interactions, I think that they have a clearer picture, and one that can be built upon in the future.

After a few weeks at home, my family and I drove up to NY where we are involved at the Csehy Summer School of Music. Csehy (pronounced “Chay-hee”) is a small Christian music camp which lasts for a little over a month in the summer. My parents were involved with the camp when they were newly married and for much of my life it has been a tradition to return. I was a camper for several years, and am in my fifth year as a counselor. Some would say that it would be wiser to move on to other possibilities, to use summer another way, to rest, relax. For me, returning to Csehy is a sort of home-coming. The people here, faculty, staff, and students, are like family to me. They have mentored and walked with me since I first came as a young teenager. God has used them in my life, and some very formative decisions in recent years have been made here. I know that because of the people here, I will be closer to God when I leave than I was when I came. The campers this year are fantastic. They are learning, growing, and struggling. Many of them are asking questions and actively seeking answers from Scripture. We are in the middle of our second week here, and I’ve already had numerous conversations with campers about everything, from life, to forgiveness, to confrontation, and everything in between. It means so much that they would share their hearts with me, and I can’t wait to see what God will do in their lives in the future.