A Crash Course

photoIt’s dark thirty on Sunday night following my first full week as youth pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Florence, SC.  What an amazing seven days this has been.  Here are some of the highlights:

Sunday, May 26 – Our First Sunday.  The highlight of this day was when the students gave me a new Bible to use to teach them the Word.

Monday (Memorial Day) – Five teenage guys volunteered to come up to the office and help me clean, set up, and decorate.  We spent about eight hours together and had a awesome time.

Tuesday – First day in the office with the staff, funeral visits to students who had deaths in their families, and dinner out with a family in the church.

Wednesday – After having breakfast with one of the students who lost his grandfather earlier in the week – I showed up to work (on my birthday) to find two teenage girls in my office yelling “surprise” along with over 260 balloons, and the office totally covered in aluminum foil.  This was by far one of the coolest things ever.  That evening we had youth worship followed by a great dinner out with some of the fellas.

Thursday – Things settled down a little and I was able to begin getting VBS and Summer Camp plans together.  Then I spent the afternoon with the home inspector of our new house.  That evening I went to the funeral visitation of another family in the church who lost a grandfather.

Friday – More awesome meetings and conversations with church members and prep for Sunday and summer camp.

Saturday – West Florence High School Graduation and two graduation parties for three of our students.

Sunday – Today was instillation day where the church commissioned me as the new youth pastor and prayed over our family.  The day ended with a great VBS Kick Off and Youth Summer Camp Meeting.

Was that enough for one week?  I’m tired, but a great tired.  It’s been hard learning everyone’s names, but it’s been a fun ride so far.  One of the best moments of this week was on Wednesday night when I talked to the students about the Tuareg Cross.  It was first passed first from me to Nic Moore back in May of 2006.  From Nic it has been passed hundreds of times over the years.  Wednesday I passed it for the first time at Ebenezer to Drew Wike.  He was so excited to get the opportunity to wear it.  In fact, when I went to see him graduate from WFHS on Saturday he was wearing it under his gown.

I have no idea what the Lord has in store for the coming years, but if this week is any indication of what’s ahead – I can’t wait.  I pray that in everything Christ is first and that He would give me the wisdom to lead these students and families boldly toward His throne.

7 Comments on “A Crash Course

  1. Nathan,
    What a fantastic week. So glad to hear that Ebenezer is loving on you, Ashley and the boys already. I know God is going to use ya’ll to do great things there in Florence. We miss ya’ll terribly already but know there is no better place to be but in God’s will. Praying that you will have an awesome week of VBS as you continue to get to know the folks at Ebenerzer.
    Love,
    Ruth and Jack

  2. In the words of a sage who lives with me:
    Totally Awesome!
    Sweet!

  3. I see you are very busy. Praying that you and your family will blessed is a special way. in the work that God is leading you to do. Sorry I miss your reception. I have a bug of some kind andI am not totally over it yet. You and your family will always be in my heart and prayers. God Loves You and I Love You Emory

  4. So excited to hear that God is rewarding your faithfulness to go where he leads you!

  5. Nathan, I am beyond thrilled to have you as our new youth pastor. I enjoyed meeting you and your family and look forward to getting to know all of you better. God is in full control and I know that you were sent to EBC by God for his purpose and in his timing. Just know that my family and I would be thrilled to help you and our youth group in anyway you may need, Thanks for your commitment to EBC and our youth.
    Brad Kempson Sr.

  6. And what totally beautiful, smart, creative, wonderful, generous, and might I mention humble sister gave that Tuareg cross to you? 🙂

  7. So glad to hear that things are going well. I know that you and Ashley will be a great blessing to them! I hated to miss your farewell send-off and had planned to drop by the house, but family issues intervened. So here, I am thanking you for all you both did while at Morningside the investment in so many lives, the model of a godly young family, and the warm friendship so many of us enjoyed. Keep us posted on life with the Neighbors! Fondly, Carol

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