Thursday, July 17, 2003

July 17, 2003

10:17 PM Just back from Word of Life Island. Around 600 teens and counselors crowded into Pine Pavilion for the service—which was loud and raucous, high-energy, incredibly exciting. Scott Foreman, Mike Laymon and Larry Bollback did a super job of keeping order amid the noise, cheers, clapping, singing, swaying, laughter, singing and loud music. In one corner of the building, a sign reads, “Christ walks on this island,” in the other corner, “Will you meet him here?” Thousands of teens have met him on the island over the years. After the service there was an All-Star Basketball game, a “party barge” cruise on Schroon Lake, and an Ice Cream paddlewheel cruise, plus soccer played on an ice hockey-size rink covered with Astroturf. I spoke for about 20 minutes on “Choosing Your Team” from Mark 8. The students listened intently to the challenge. Afterwards Marlene and I jumped in the speedboat along with Wayne Lewis, his son Jeff, and Seth, the driver, who drove us around the 90-acre island. They like to say that “the moon over Schroon will surely make you swoon.” Seth really revved up the boat and we roared across the lake at 9:45 PM. We didn’t swoon but we did have a blast. BTW, there are 480 campers on the island this week along with 300 high school and college-age staffers.

3:18 PM Back in the room after 2 services this AM, talking to a ton of people, lunch with Mike and Barb King at their campsite (we sat under the tallest pine trees I’ve ever seen—so tall their tops were swaying in the wind), then to WOL HQ to tape two radio broadcasts with Joe Jordan. Sixteen messages down, four to go. We’re both a little pooped right now, I think. But we do enjoy being here and ministering to and with so many good people. Lots of new sign-ups for the weekly sermon e-mail list—it’s at 1367 right now. We eat supper with the Theises and then go to the Island where I’m speaking to 480 teenagers. I got a bit of good news today. Almost two years ago I agreed to go to the Czech Republic next month to speak for a big conference. Found out that it has been canceled. I’m happy about that because that’s the week Nick enrolls at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. The cancellation means I can go with Marlene to take Nick to college. Tomorrow is our final day here. It’s also the day when we wash our clothes so we’re ready to travel to Maine on Saturday.

9:14 AM Here’s the Legacy Campaign prayer request for today: “Pray for God’s blessing on the families of the work crews.”

8:23 AM Just back from a four-mile walk through Schroon Lake, past the Mt. Severance Grocery Store to the turnoff for the airport. Glorious day high in the Adirondack Mountains—a few clouds floating overhead, brilliant blue sky, incredibly green leaves on the trees, clear mountain air. A picture-postcard day. Yesterday was full from start to finish. So far I’ve preached 13 times with six more sermons plus a radio interview plus two meal appointments to go. Been my busiest week ever at Word of Life. On our way to have lunch in Chestertown yesterday with Wayne and Ruthie Lewis, Marlene saw a sign in Pottersville that read, “Home of the 1964 National Christmas Tree.” Not the same as “Birthplace of Ernest Hemingway,” but it’s close. Last night we ate supper with Mike and Betsi Calhoun at their home. She fixed an “Alabama dinner” of pork chops, cornbread, and my personal favorite, fried okra. I thought I had died and gone to heaven. At 9:30 PM I spoke to the counseling staff at the Campground on, “How do you know when you are being called by God?” Here’s the schedule for today: Preach twice in the AM, lunch with Mike and Barb King, radio interview with Joe Jordan, supper with George and Joan Theis, speak at the Island.

On the home front, Steve Meyer and Seth Grotelueschen have teamed up in the search for a location to store the “Anchor for the Soul” books… . And tomorrow afternoon the Allied Force team leaves for Costa Rica.

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