Friday, July 23, 2010

Wings of Tin

My feet are lead
My wings are tin
And I'm stuck on the roof tryin to fly again
But conditions are good and my will is right
So I'll spread my wings wide and take flight

I'm draggin my toes through the clouds as I go
Footprints I'm leaving in white
But I'm spelling your name
With the drops of the rain
High above your small house tonight
High above your small house tonight

Shadows, air and dust make the heart of man
The soul is weightless like the wind in the palm of you hand

Still my feet are lead
My wings are tin
And I'm up on the roof tryin to fly again
But conditions are good and my will is right
So I'll spread my wings wide and take flight
See me spread my wings wide and take flight

I will spread my wings wide and take flight

-Mike Barnet

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Camp, Family

First, I have to apologize to everyone for taking such a long time out. For those of you that have been frequently checking up at my urging, I know it is unfair to expect to keep your attention when I am not putting up many updates. With that said, here's one to keep you going.

Last week, I had the opportunity to work as a field specialist for Mexico Family Camp. This is the group that I have come with to Mexico year after year. Essentially, the leaders that started Mexico Family Camp organize a trip each year with a large number of people, and then plan their trip with Amor. Since this is the group I have always come on Amor trips with, the week afforded me the opportunity to see many old friends and even a few members of my family. After spending a few weeks away from home and getting acclimated, it was a really great opportunity to just be comfortable with some people that I know well.

My time with Family Camp started as the advanced crew came in to get everything set up for the participants who would be following. This group included many friends that I have gotten to know over the years, including the Mathis family who were the impetus for the creation of camp. Dean and Amy Mathis are a wonderful couple who have raised awesome boys. Dean is a guy who emanates love for the people around him while still maintaining his manhood. I am very grateful for having been given the opportunity to get to know him. If I had not witnessed Amor through the lens of his outreach and what has been created at Mexico Family Camp, I may not have been struck so strongly by what Amor does over the years. I am thankful for the impression that has been left on me by the Mathises and MFC, because as time goes on, I am more and more convinced that Amor is exactly where God wants me this year.

After being with Amor for a month and learning about being a field specialist and everything that goes on in Mexico, it was interesting being on the other side of the fence at Family Camp. I was very humbled by the pride in me that many of the family campers displayed. At camp the prior year, I had spent a lot of time in thought and prayer considering what the next step in my life might be. During that week I began to feel very convicted about coming to work with Amor. I shared this feeling with other campers at the time. I was told many times of how encouraging it was to watch someone like me follow through on such a decision despite the sacrifices that were required in my life. The truth is, I have had to make sacrifices, but I feel a lot happier making sacrifices and being in God's will than I felt before. If the fact that I am here now serves as a motivation or encouragement to the people around me, all I can say is thank you and I am immensely grateful for where I am.

As the week went on, I had a lot of great times with everyone around me, even though I bossed people around a little more than in past years. Honestly, so many of the campers have been on past Amor trips that they didn't need much guidance. This worked out really well for me. Since the different sites didn't need all that much help, I was able to spend more time on the site which had my family, including my Father, brother Tyler and cousin Lauren. It was great that I got to spend Father's Day with my Dad. So good, in fact, that I made him a Mexico-style, homemade card. I also enjoyed bonding with Lauren and Tyler, it's great to have longstanding relationships strengthened through mutual experiences and emotions. Saying goodbye to everyone was tough as always. I have joked that when I am in Mexico I have to experience the last day of summer camp once a week, and the truth is that is exactly what happens. Family camp was tougher in some respects and easier in some respects given that I had so many preexisting relationships.

Following camp, I got some much needed days off. I had been in the field with very little respite for nearly three weeks. Although I absolutely love it in Mexico, working in the field is an exhausting lifestyle and time off is much appreciated. What made this recent break even better, though, was having Tyler around. He decided to stay in San Diego with me for five days after camp. We hung out, went to the aquarium, spent time with our local family and mostly just "enjoyed" the gloomy June San Diego Weather. It was absolutely awesome having Tyler around, although we didn't do anything terribly exciting, it was great to connect with him and get to know better the man he is becoming.

The past few weeks have been great and I feel energized going into the next week, which I will be spending in Mexico. Light a firecracker and enjoy a beverage in my stead, as I will be in Mexico for the 4th. Thanks for tuning in, it's always great to share.