Jul 10, 2008

Few things inspire and impress me like leadership in young people. And, suffice it to say, I’ve been more than a little inspired and impressed over the past two weeks. Though I have highlighted the Basotho youth who are rising up to impact South Africa, I would be incredibly amiss to neglect mentioning the six youth within our own team. 100_5295

Each one–and I really mean EACH ONE–has demonstrated amazing courage and work ethic as well as an obvious love for God, daring to live so far outside their own box I can’t help but be challenged to live a little more outrageously myself. DSC_0032 (2)

Led by Alex, a youth intern with more leadership potential in his little pinkie than many of us will have in a lifetime, Kevin, Mitch, Jake and Tara caught his vision of a mission trip to South Africa and gave up a typical high school summer break in Nebraska to follow their heart. DSC_0008 (2)

Lauren and Alyssa are no different. They also gave up much to be here, though I doubt they’d call it a sacrifice even for a moment. I’ve known these two for a couple years now, but have seen within them a growing maturity and a bottomless well of compassion and love–not to mention energy.

I have watched all these youth run and hug and play with countless children, only to pick up and do the same thing again and again the next day. Their attitudes are consistently positive, and I am convicted time and time again by their example of what it means to serve and love without restraint.100_5202

Though we will be leaving the youth of Intabazwe on Saturday, I have a renewed fire in my heart to invest in the youth right in my own back yard. These six young people are truly “fanning into flame” their heart and passion for the orphans and poor and needy throughout the world. Like a torch beckoning others to follow, they aren’t waiting to grow up or “make something” of themselves in order to make a difference. They are doing it TODAY. NOW.

Isn’t this something from which we so-called “grown-ups” could learn? Rather than waiting for this or that to make it a “better” time to do something, what would happen if each one of us determined to capture THIS MOMENT to impact our world to the glory of God? While its never too late, it is clearly never too early to be an extension of compassion to a world who needs just a little more love and a little more hope.P7080220


  1. Mark and Linda Chitwood

    Michele, We have truly enjoyed reading your comments this week – and have loved the pictures. We are Mitch’s parents and have followed along with you on your journey. What an amazing time you have had! Thanks for sharing with all of us! Give Mitch a hug from his mom!!

  2. dave hall

    mark told me about this blog today awesome. who are you? do you work with chris at mountainview? do you think my son (alex) is cute? can I come on the next trip with al. Im almost as fun as alex just really old. Please respond to all my questions. tell alex that his mom and dad jimmy amanda megan dewey (none of theses r girlfriends) all miss him and love him, and as soon as he steps one foot on u.s. soil he is to call me. P.S. thanks for the amazing comment you said of al it made me cry
    I love you for that and all you are doing, I promise we would be awesome friends let me come next time

  3. Amanda Hall

    Hey. thanks for the pics! My brother and cousins are on this trip and its nice to know what they have been doing!


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