Sunday, September 28, 2008

So how was it?....

warning- I write this for me. I tend to forget EVERYTHING (worst memory ever) and need to process through my time with IC so I thought that writing out some of it would be helpful. You are more than welcome to read as it is more insightful than I have shared with most. 

In recent months, I have gotten a variation of the same question over and over again, "How was it?" Given, most people ask wanting to hear "Good, and how are you?" But I am not one for the script so I usually tell them that that is big question and I don't think I have the time but that it was really good but really hard. That is what most people know, it was really good but really hard. But I feel like many of my friends that have asked sincerely want to know how tour was, what I saw, what I learned, what I hated and everything else so I would like to share some. 
I left on August 13 2007 and arrived in San Diego and was greeted at the airport by two guys named Seth and Ben. Seth would later become one of my best friends. We went to the roadie house and waited for everyone else who was already there to return from the beach. That night we had many introductions between strangers and cheesy name games in an attempt to learn a little more about one another knowing that we each were in for what we thought might be the craziest and best times of our life those next 9 months. After a few weeks of booking we headed for the road, tour had finally begun. My team and I headed north on the 101 and the 1 to begin the 6 week tour speaking at high schools, churches, coffee shops and other random venues. We returned back to San Diego with 8 new additions to our roadie family, including my spring teammate Josh. We lived together as a family of 45 in 1 house for about 3 months. There were so many ups and downs about that house but overall I wouldn't trade those three months for anything. We had many great memories- man nights, the hole in the wall bar by our house, many 21st birthdays at a place called Yard House. 
But through that fall, I may have been having the time of my life but my soul was in a very dark place. I had stopped praying, reading my bible, listening to sermons and couldn't stand christian music because of the conviction that it bought. To make things worse, any time that I struggle with spiritual apathy my answer is to surround myself with people because in social settings I thrive and don't have to think about my junk that I keep in. So through this I really started to doubt God's presence in my life and didn't know what to think or feel. So going into December before coming home from christmas break I prayed that He would use my time at home to remind me of His goodness  and start to draw me near. I arrived home to answered prayers. I spent much of the break with one of my best friends, Andrew. Andrew poured truth into me again and again and never stopped to remind me of God's goodness. I asked Andrew to be praying for me and I knew that he really would be. So I arrived back in San Diego and started to learn what discipline could look like there or our tour. God was so good in showing me ways to be in his word and in prayer on tour. Through the spring tour, God was so faithful in drawing me closer to him in ways that I hadn't known before. 
The best/worst part of God drawing near and that it was happening on tour is the junk that is revealed to you. I learned that I am incredibly selfish. Incredibly selfish and if you didn't catch that I tend to be selfish. There were many times that I was so uncompromising and ungracious to my teammates and so different from the Jesus I was praying to. So through my time on tour, I learned, even more so than before, the depths of my depravity. I am such a arrogant, selfish, prideful, bitter and many other negative words ending in "ful."
So how was it? Good. Hard. It was easily one of the most growing moments I've had in my life. More than one friend has told me how different and changed I am. I learned the priorities that things should be in (theology etc.) and noticed my tendency to want to correct people for things that aren't important and mainly to only make myself look smart. But those 9 months were also some of the hardest in my life and I could never do it again. But saying that, if I had a time machine I would never change the fact that I did it. It is a ONCE in a lifetime experience and should remain that way. 
Coming back was kind of weird. The movement director at Invisible Children referred to coming home as stepping out of "Narnia" and I didn't realize how true that would be. I look back at the last year and it feels like it didn't even happen and that there was a Josh here in DFW living life as normal and one on tour doing the IC thing. But God has been gracious through the past few months since being back. He has given me back valued friendships and given me many new ones. 
I pray that God continue to work in me and though I hate it, continue to reveal more and more of my problems so I can start to give the control over to Christ for Him to work those out. 

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