Spring Break ’17

Untitled

I’ll never forget the rush of adrenaline and air blowing through the windows of our vehicle, as we hurtled down the Interstate, south toward Florida.

“SPRING BREAK ’97!” We yelled into the night air. It was a battle cry throughout the entire week with three other friends from college. We had so much fun reveling in each other’s company, enjoying good food, tropical temperatures, random encounters with strangers, a spring training baseball game, and a whole bunch of other spontaneous adventures…

“But what will it be like to try this with a wife, three kids, another family of five, and five students from Kent State University?” I wondered as we made the drive through the night last weekend. The fifteen-hour drive allowed for a lot of thought and prayer for Spring Break ’17.

Untitled

Just before sunrise on Saturday morning, we took a slight detour from our route to watch the sun rise over the ocean at St. Augustine, Florida. It promotes itself as the oldest city in North America, which was interesting and ironic because we were on our way to Orlando to spend our week with the newest H2O church plant at the University of Central Florida.

Untitled

It’s such a beautiful thing to travel a thousand miles away and still find community. Family. Even though most of the members of our two teams had never met each other prior to this week, we quickly became friends. Brothers and sisters, even. A lot of this bonding happened through laboring together: Unloading production equipment at seven o’clock on Sunday morning… Handing out flyers on campus…

Untitled

Helping to maintain H2O’s weekly rhythms… Pitching in together for service projects…

Untitled

Discussing and developing strategy for ministry, together… Looking back, it’s kind of amazing all that we were able to squeeze into our week there in Orlando!

Untitled

But we also had a lot of fun: Eating some of the best barbecue we’ve ever had… Swimming like manatees in crystal clear spring water at the Blue Spring State Park… Laughing and telling stories around the hot tub at the end of a long day… Taking in a baseball game together on a gorgeous spring night…

Untitled

It was definitely a week to remember! There is so much potential at the University of Central Florida. It’s currently the largest university in the United States, with 63,000 students roaming around a beautiful campus of concentric circles with all kinds of interesting spaces for people to meet and interact.

Untitled

It was an honor to be in on the “ground floor” of this new movement on campus, with H2O. We’re praying for God to multiply their efforts 100-fold in the years to come.

Untitled

Regardless of what sprouts from the seeds we scattered behind us at the University of Central Florida, I’m convinced that one of the most meaningful elements of our trip to Florida for Spring Break ’17 was God’s work in the hearts of our team from Kent. I’m so, so proud of the way that Rachel, Kairie, Josh, Scott, and Lindsay (as well as our Staff families) leaned into our objectives for the week. They brought inestimable energy and enthusiasm to H2O and the University of Central Florida. They gained first-hand experience in the weird, wacky, wearying, and wonderful work of collegiate church planting. They forged deep relationships that will carry them through the rest of their college years and beyond — perhaps even continuing to yield spiritual fruit by Spring Break ’37!

Untitled

Our Spring Break experience was fantastic — everything it’s supposed to be. We absolutely reveled in each other’s company. We enjoyed some really good food (especially 4 Rivers Barbecue!). The tropical temperatures, with sunshine and highs in the 80s every day, were a delightful break from the cool and rainy conditions in Kent. We made so many new friends: Ashlyn, Agustina, Ethan, Will, Matt, Savannah, Brendon, Arik, Hannah, Joseph, Marlon, Kevin, Jasper, Julio, Nick, Max, Angelica, Rosie, Dennis, Stefan, Own, Greg, Briana, Maddy, Krishannamarie, Bryce, Knightro (to name just a few)… It was epic. (And in case you’re interested, all of my pictures from the week have been been posted in an on-line album).

But I will say that it’s also good to be back in Ohio, getting a bit of a break from our Break before classes start up again and we sprint to the finish of another school year at Kent State University.

This entry was posted in Church, H2O Kent, Photography, Prayer, The Bible, The United States of America, Travel and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.