my church is my home and my youth group is my family. by that, i mean they’re everything to me that a literal family is.
they made me who i am. i’ve had the best times and the most terrible awful times with them. they’ve changed and so have i. but they love me and i love them, because they’re mine, and always will be.
over the last few years i’ve found that finding a new church doesn’t make my “old” church not my home anymore; it’s just like growing up and getting my own house. it’s normal and it’s good, and i’m still welcome back home anytime.
which is why once a year, i get what i call a reunion.
of the six times i’ve gone to ridge haven, i was only actually a student for the first two of them. but it’s still the same every year.
we laugh. we eat. we play catchphrase. we eat some more. we murder each other, we play capture the flag in the dark, make smores, slide down hills, roll in dirt, throw shaving cream on each other, wave at strangers, and sing in public bathrooms. and then we eat a little more to top it all off.
everyone gets to be who they are, and everyone gets to be loved for it. it’s the safest place in the world.
just like in a real family, the “big kids” grow up and start being all responsible someday, but in the end, the important things stay the same. it doesn’t matter if you’re 12 or 21.
it’s still home.
“yeah everything goes away…but i’m gonna be here til forever, so just call when you’re around.“