Lessons From My Trip To England #1

England! Where do I even start with talking about what I learned from this trip? There were so many lessons I learned and there are so many moments I am thankful to have experienced!

Let’s start with talking about the juiciest part of the England trip. Getting from London to Creation Fest in Cornwall!

Boy oh boy was this part of the trip intense! Looking back on this is awesome though. God worked in it and God was glorified through it.

I’ll start at the beginning, we had finished our chunk of outreach in London. The YAC leaders were renting vans so that they could drive us down to Cornwall (Where Creation Fest was). The plan was to rent 4 vans and have the left over kids take a bus over.

That sadly was not at all what happened. The YAC leaders showed up to rent the vans and the rental place said that we could only rent 2. After a long and I’m sure heated conversation they agreed to give us 3 vans. Jaryd would drive one, Craig would drive one, and someone else (I don’t remember who) would drive the other one.

Awesome! Not that bad… that just means that a little more of us would have to take the bus than we thought. We are still in the game!

Sadly again, there’s more to this story. Jaryd (God bless that awesome guy) got in a car accident on the way back from the van rental place. Not a bad one, but it did mean that we couldn’t use that van so we were down to 2 vans again.

And before you think “man Jaryd how did you get in a car accident? It’s not that hard to drive” I’d love to correct that thought. Remember this is in London! The British are weird and drive on the opposite side of the road, and the van that Jaryd was driving was a stick shift van!

Be a little more considerate imaginary critic of Jaryd! Geez…

To my limited knowledge (because I wasn’t there) Jaryd was taking a left turn and because the steering wheel is on the other side of the car (right side instead of left) his spacial awareness was off and he scratched against a city bus.

This knocked us off of our feet. Our legs were swept right form under us. We had to be at Creation Fest to preform in a day and we only had 2 vans to transport 50 kids. Craig had to make the tough choice of taking the musicians and some of the more experienced dancers with him in the vans and leave Jaryd and his van group behind in London.

Jaryd and his van group were going to stay in London another night and rent a van the next day (The van rental place said that they would have a van ready for them by then)

It was a tough time. Stress sky rocketed, criticism of Craig and the leaders came at all angles, gossip was spreading all around, and upset parents were questioning why they just sent their children over to the other side of the world with a guy who couldn’t figure out how to transport us.

Yet we had to keep moving forward, Craig’s group (I was in Craig’s group) arrived at Creation Fest and had a great time! We even got to preform on the big stage of the festival in front of hundreds of people and were broadcasted live on a TV channel called God TV.

But we were hit in the gut again. That night we received word that Jaryd’s group had to stay in London another night!

It was discouraging. Stress was even higher and negative emotions were rising.

I felt depleted in that moment. I wanted to be positive, but there was so much negativity. I felt alone, and I couldn’t see how to make the group being stuck in London for 2 extra nights and miss out on the festival be a good thing.

So I did what any follower of Jesus should do when they’re in distress. I prayed.

I vented my emotions to God and asked him to help me be a positive force to our group. I asked him to help me not be alone and to be able to see the good happening in this situation instead of the bad, and in that moment God spoke to me.

It was such a cool moment! God said.

Don’t trust in Craig. Trust in me”

And I know that this wasn’t me that thought it because I immediately went. “What?? What does that even mean?”

I started thinking about what God had said to me and I had a “click” in my brain. I was putting my hope in Craig and my leaders when I should’ve put my hope in God. The emotions I was investing into these people should’ve been emotions that I invested into God. My leaders are not perfect and they will let me down. God will not. God is perfect and should be my leader above any of my other leaders.

When I realized this I felt an overwhelming sense of peace. Instead of feeling drained I felt full and overflowing with new founded love, patience, and optimism about the situation.

It was so cool! God was there using us even in our bad moods, and soon everything fell into place. Relationships with the students and leaders were restored. Jaryd managed to get a van after staying in London an extra 2 nights, and we had such a blast at Creation Fest!

To conclude one of the many lessons I learn’t on the trip, I hope you understand that God will use you! Even if you’re in a bad mood and even if you’re not aware how he is using you.

God is loving and perfect and will not let us down. Invest the emotions that come from depending on someone and invest them in God! Not people who will disappoint.