Sunday, December 31, 2006

Top Ten Memories of 2006

It's a New Year, and I guess that is a good thing. For the past few years one of my personal highlights of the new year is being able to look back at the previous one and compile this little list of my favorite memories from the year. Since this is a top ten list, it is organized in descending order, for dramatic effect of course!

10. Fall Retreat
I had a good year at Epworth, and I think the fact that this list will contain many church related memories shows that. Anyway, the Fall Retreat was good for multiple reasons. I designed my own curriculum on Spiritual Warfare that in my biased opinion is really, really good (the adult chaperons who came told me the same). More importantly, it seemed that the concepts really connected with some of the youth. On top of that, I got to play paintball and the retreat concluded with an extremely incredible snipe hunt.

9. Stripping in Church
One of the biggest accomplishments I feel I made this year was establishing a youth-focused service once a quarter at Epworth, and this particular test service really helped. I gave a sermon that required me to take off my clothes (as I took off layers of who I am). It is obvious that this message really connected as both the illustration and the content is STILL talked about in the church.

8. Jr. High Trip
I had a really busy summer this year. Part of this summer involved taking the Jr. High to Arkansas for an experience at Heifer Ranch. The experience of the world village which involved living in a grass hut and experiencing poverty first hand might have been to much for some of the Jr. Highers, but it defiantly made an impact on them . . . and me.

7. White Water Rafting
This was a really good youth group trip. I along with a group of teenagers and adult chaperons got to eat lunch atop John's Rock. Swim in a waterfall, go down an overflowing sliding rock, participate in a worship service on the side of a mountain, and of course go White Water Rafting for the first time. It is also on this trip that I discovered I really, really like Queen (listening to them for 6 hours straight will do that!)

6. Melissa's Wedding
I will be honest, the weddings are always beautiful and it is always great to see people I know happy, but my favorite part of going to weddings is spending time with other people who have come to the weddings. I got to do that at two weddings this year: Carrie and Dustin's and Melissa and Ben's (and my sister got married!) However, at Mel's wedding I got to catch up with a lot of old friends and I greatly enjoyed that.

5. Battlefront 2 Day
For the first 8 months of the year, at least once a week my brother and I would get our gaming on. Galaxies were conquered, Invaders were repelled, and monkeys were slaughtered. It was epic. However, he had to go and move to Denver. Knowing this was coming we put aside an entire day to play Star Wars Battlefront II (our favorite game). We played all maps all modes (this was somewhere over 90 individual matches). It took close to 8 hours to complete, and we topped it off with a White Castle Crave Case. Yep, good times.

4. Getting Published
It has always been a dream of mine to be published for real. It so happened that in a course of like two weeks I did this twice as the website playedtodeath and the magazine Group bought articles from me. Throughout the year I wrote several video game reviews for Played to Death (though that seems to have dried up now), and in 2007 I have serious aspirations to get published in Group again.

3. Kentucky Get-a-way
Abigail and I did not take a proper vacation this year. However, over Fall break we did getaway to a little cabin along a lake in Kentucky outside of Louisville. It was fun and romantic. The fact we got to go to a Historical Arms Museum the next day only made it more perfect.

2. Seminary
There is not a specific seminary memory, but more of a composite. I have really enjoyed seminary. Despite how much I drag my feet in studying, reading, and writing I really do enjoy it and I am well suited for academia. More importantly, for the first time since graduating college I can now say that I have friends that I regularly interact with, which is something I have desired for a couple of years now. It is a little odd though that they are all 10+ years older than me.

1. Cayman Island Mission Trip
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The youth group mission trip to the Cayman Islands is the single biggest endeavor that I have ever been in charge of. The actual trip itself was good, productive, and memorable. The biggest highlight for me is not the work we accomplished, the fun we had, or the good evening small group. The highlight for me is that the trip would have failed if Abigail was not there. I handled the big picture stuff, she made sure it flowed. We made a heck of a team!

I have to say, I greatly enjoyed 2006. If 2007 is anywhere near as good as 2006 then I am truly blessed.


Blogger Mel said...

*does a little dance* My wedding made your top 10. How awesome! I'm so glad you guys got to come. It was so good to see you!

And I'm glad that the trip to Cayman was such a success. I know Dad really enjoyed having you all there. :)

God bless you both in 2007!

9:14 AM  

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