January 8, 2009

San Diego

Late last summer, I got a call from some friends, inviting me to lead worship and teach some at a conference for college students in San Diego. In January.

January in Lee’s Summit is cold and windy and grey and yucky. It is all the parts of winter that I don’t really like. Actually, there’s not much to winter that I do like. So, when the invitation to go to sunny San Diego in January came, I was thrilled.

Now the truth. We’re in the mountains of California, 45 minutes east of San Diego. It’s cold and windy here. Easily as cold as it currently is in Lee’s Summit. The heater in the room in which I sleep has a timer, and will only stay on for 6 hours, making it difficult to get out of bed in the morning.

Leading worship has been terrific. The students certainly worship through song, but also with their lives. There are electives to attend and breakout sessions. They ask hard questions and listen with discerning hearts and ears.

Yesterday was a wonderful experience. The students were encouraged to explore various disciplines/practices in order to put themselves in a position to hear from God. We went to Cabrillo National Monument in order to listen.

Cabrillo was gorgeous. Surrounded by a vast ocean and the roar of the waves, I was mesmerized by the beauty. We aren’t afforded this kind of view in Missouri! While at Cabrillo, I met a couple of Buddhist monks, and enjoyed visiting with them. I took their picture, and they requested a picture with me. Unfortunately, I don’t have a copy. But it was still cool.

After Cabrillo, we went to the tide pools, dancing and exploring the diversity of marine life, before heading to the beach.

At the beach, a couple of students swam in the ocean. Not me. I saw a group of surfers and walked over to watch and say ‘hi’. They were from Latvia. They are professional snowboarders on vacation, working their way down the western coastline before returning to Latvia.

After the beach, we headed to dinner, where I ate with Elohim Salazar, a campus missionary and church planter in Guadalajara. I learned so much about the similarities and differences between the cultures, and started thinking of ways that a church in Lee’s Summit could help and partner with him and his ministry.

He invited me to come and see his ministry and home. There is a group headed to Mexico for a couple of days in early May to learn how he is engaging the city of 6.5 million people. I told him I’d have to brush up on my Spanish!

So, if you’ve got $1500 to send me to Mexico for a couple of days, please let me know.

I wonder who I’ll meet today.

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