Well San Diego can be described in one word - amazing!roomies - me, lindsey, kali, sarah, megan.
I have been having the most fun time EVER. I never thought that I would already feel so close with the people that are on this trip and I would have never imagined that this trip would be so life changing.
I have been really busy though so I'm going to try and quickly recap the past few days! Each day kind of has a similar schedule; wake up - big group meeting - evangelism/lunch/bible study - free time/dinner - big group time...so I'll just give you the details!
Monday (DAY 3)
So Monday morning we had our big group meeting and learned about an evangelism tool called the "soularium". The soularium is a picture survey that people can take that kind of leads them to think spiritually. It asks questions like "what 3 pictures would you choose to describe your life right now? and what picture represents God for you? and that kind of thing. The pictures are random; nature, buildings, animals, people etc. The cool thing about the soularium is that its a fun way to evangelize - you don't force your ideas on anyone and they don't really realize that they're doing something that may potentially turn into a God talk.
That day in our small group we talked about being bold in sharing your faith. It's amazing to see how the Holy Spirit gives you the ability to be eloquent when speaking and confident in your words.
That afternoon we split up into groups and got to do a scavenger hunt along the beach and the boardwalk. It was so much fun! We had to do things like - take a jumping picture, sing a beach boys song with a stranger, have one of us run into the ocean fully clothed (ME! FREEZING! BURRR!), ask someone for their sock, bury a stranger in the sand and build a pyramid with your whole group and a stranger...it was SO FUN and gave us a chance to bond and joke around together.
That night after Dinner we went to La Jolla beach and got to just enjoy the view and appreciate each other and God's company. I had never been to the Pacific before and the view was truly breathtaking; God is so creative and majestic. When we were there it was nice to talk to some of the people I hadn't really talked to yet. Everyone is so friendly and christ-centered; christian fellowship is truly irreplaceable. While at the beach we met a few Gypsy men and it was really interesting to talk to them and hear about their culture and lifestyle. Gypsies have a negative connotation, but these men were really nice. I love meeting new people! After La Jolla we went to Mt. Soledad. Mt. Soledad is a small mountain/hill that looks over the San Diego skyline. We had prayer time as we took in the view of San Diego at night and we got to pray as a group for the city and enjoy God's beauty. Monday was one of the first days that we all bonded as a whole. LOVE IT.
GOD's awe-inspiring, beautiful creation.
Tuesday (DAY 4)
Tuesday morning we started our big group meeting learning about the "Spirit filled Life". We talked about being satisfied in your walk with God and stepping out in faith. We also talked about how evangelism isn't a human effort; it's a spirit led effort and how to let the spirit lead you in your walk with God.
After that we headed to UCSD (university california san diego) and SDSU (san diego state university) to evangelize on campus. I had never really done that before. Although I've been a christian for the majority of my life, I haven't ever really put myself out there to spread the gospel to strangers or anything. It was completely out of my comfort zone.
I was paired with Ashley from my small group and we would just go up to random students (they're on a quarterly schedule so their still in class) and either do the soularium survey or the Quest survey. The quest survey is pretty much the soularium survey without the use of pictures and it takes less time. It was amazing to see the different lifestyles and religious backgrounds that the students had. You could truly see and feel God working through us on the campus.
That afternoon we had small group and then for dinner our leader Angela made us all some delicious chicken burritos! After dinner and small group time we had "project at the park" time. It was pretty much just all of us going to the park together and hanging out. It has definitely been my FAVORITE NIGHT so far! I got to play ultimate frisbee for the first time and I had so much fun! After that we did a few icebreakers and then we got to go to a local boardwalk/amusement park and hang out. I hadn't been on a roller-coaster in soooo long and it was awesome to hang out with everyone and just have fun together. It was also nice to get a chance to bond with the guys on the trip since it's mostly just girl time. (This trip gives me hope that there may actually be a christian guy out there haha!) We also came back and had a "dance party" and watched youtube videos. It was so much fun! I felt like we were a huge group of best friends that had known each other forever. FUN STUFF!
My frisbee team was "God's wrath" we won (of course), it's god's wrath... it always wins haha
Wednesday (DAY 5)
Wednesday was pretty focused on evangelism. We woke up Wednesday morning and had our Bible study early so that we could have the afternoon for witnessing on the beach. I'm kind of in shock how much I love my small group. I'm gonna miss them so much when this trip is over! They're so cute, funny, easy to talk to and strong believers - which is amazing.
After small group we had a speaker, Scott Wallen, come talk to everyone for about 2 hours. He had some truly inspirational and informative things to say. Going to school at App I'm faced with a lot of scientific based beliefs, atheism, and nonbelievers. I knew that God placed him on this trip to help me! He went to Grad school for over 13 years and had degrees in things like psychology, political science (separation of church in state) christian and religious studies...pretty much anything you could imagine that would help with evangelism! He was gifted, lets just say that! He talked about how our culture today impacts evangelism, how naturalism and postmodernism dominate our classrooms, how tolerance is the ultimate virtue, how to use the socratic method of evangelism, how to involve our mind in religion and many many other topics. I was so intrigued. He gave us a lot of tools that I can definitely take back to my campus so I'm pumped to start spreading the love of Christ!
After his talk, we got to actually use what we had learned. We had about 2 hours to walk around the beach and witness to people using the soularium and quest surveys again. Kali, from my small group, actually got to pray with someone to accept Christ. YAY! With each day that I evangelize to someone, it's becoming easier and easier. I can't wait until it's like a second nature to me and the good thing is that the joy of spreading my faith with never fade!
For dinner we went and got sushi (first time - delicious!) and then after that we had women's night which was so much fun. Being in small groups unfortunately kind of divides up the girls so it was nice to talk to everyone at once. When we first got there we got to take a quiz about ourself. It was REALLY COOL and I would definitely recommend it. It had a list of the most common God related struggles women face like gossip, lust, impurity, self image, control, achievement idolatry, timidity, lying and that kind of thing. Each girl had to circle all of the ones that applied to them and then we shuffled them up and passed them back out. After they were passed back out Amy, our leader, read off each one and if it was circled on the new quiz you had gotten then you had to raise your hand. It was really comforting and humbling to see that no matter what sin it was, someone else had dealt with it too. I loved that activity. We also talked a lot about boundaries in all types of relationships and finding your identity in Christ and not earthly things.
Small group: Me, Kali, Nichole, Angela, Ashley
SUSHI! crunchy roll and dynamite roll! YUM!
I can't even put into words how miraculous, humbling and spiritually fulfilling this trip has been...and THERE'S MORE TO COME!!!!!