I had a great time this weekend with two Mississippi youth groups at a retreat center right down the road from Possumneck, Mississippi. It was great seeing Grant Azbell, Michael Cooper and Jeremy Anderson. It was great meeting Scott Kopf. The retreat was focused on Sabbath. Grant and Scott didn’t set a schedule of events for the weekend in order to give the teens plenty of free time to play, read their Bibles, find time alone with God, etc. I think I was more blessed by them this weekend than they were by me. Their love for God and for each other was clear. We can learn a lot about what’s most important from spending time with Christian teenagers.
I think often we get caught up in thinking our role with them is for us to help them and so we see them as projects with problems. We want to identify all their issues and then give them advice on how to fix everything that’s broken in their lives. But that is not really want they want from us. That is not really how they want us to see them. They are looking for a friend. They are looking for someone to listen without trying to fix everything. It is important that we provide that for them.
For the return flight I got to the airport 4 hours early. When it was time to board the plane had a nail in the tire and so we all had to get new flights. This wouldn’t be so hard at Atlanta or a bigger airport but the Jackson airport is tiny and there are very few options. The only option was to go with a different airline. When I got to the ticket counter with my ticket transfer slip they informed me the flight that I had been rebooked to was full and they told the gentleman who switched my flight not to book the ticket! But they would just see if someone didn’t show. I then tried to talk TSA into letting me get through security quicker since I had already been through once. I asked him about the private search advertised on the sign that said you could get one upon request. He said they only do that for suspicious people. I asked him if I could request one and what they were like. He said they take longer as they have to take you to the back and bring a witness. When he said witness I told him I was fine to wait! Why on earth would anyone request that! That’s like having a sign that says speeding tickets will be given upon request out on the highway.