Grant and I just got back from Los Angeles, CA for the NYWC- National Youth Workers Convention representing my awesome job, Camp Electric. The convention has a exhibitor area where you buy a space and set up your booth. It's been great to spread the word about a camp focused on the Lord. My boss graciously allowed Grant to come along with me on the trip so we have both got to talk to people about CE as well as getting to hear from speakers like Donald Miller, Perry Noble, and listen to the David Crowder Band. Awesome!
This is a picture of Grant and I outside the Staples Center in Los Angeles on our first day there.
Our first day here we set up our booth and then headed to explore LA. We made it to Rodeo Drive, stopped in Louis Vitton, had some delicious fat free yogurt, and just enjoyed a new place! While we were here we ran into a great college friend, Mike Barbera so it's been fun to catch up with him and the ministry he is involved in.
The hotel we stayed in had a Spanish-Mexican theme. I loved it. Grant...
not so much :) He prefers the straight-lined, white, modern hotels.
I love the ones with character!
Donald Miller spoke and encouraged the youth workers to work to be involved in writing the story to your student's lives. He taught that without hardship in life there is no story. Everyone goes through hardship and it's about how you break away from that that determines how your story is written. Obviously he said it a lot better than I did. HIs new book is called "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years". He also wrote "Blue Like Jazz". About his new book, he described it as more of a narrative than a religious based book.
One of my favorite things I discovered was "FroYo" as our friends told us it
was called-Frozen Yogurt. Only 2 Weight Watcher points! With fruit-3 points! Awesome!
While we were at the conference at our Camp Electric booth our "neighboring" booth were some guys representing a movie coming out called "I-Heart Movement" (http://www.i-heart.org/) that comes out this November (the 2nd or 3rd).
So, after that little advertisement I will get back to what I was saying... So, these guys-Ben, Matt, Pat, and Diego were our neighbors for the weekend and they invited us to their church in Newport Beach. I believe the church was the Newport Beach Church. I could and am probably wrong about that but Grant and I went to visit Sunday night and it was AMAZING! The pastors came over from Australia (husband and wife pastor the church). The church is kind of a branch of Hillsong. From the moment Grant and I walked in we were extremely impressed. Everyone was super nice and welcoming. Seriously. Everyone. From the moment we walked up to the door there was someone there welcoming us and directing us. When Grant and I stood around awkwardly someone would come up and talk to us about anything. We later found out that they have everything planned down to a "T". They have people who's responsibility is to talk to people who aren't talking to anyone. They have a women's ministry that the wife pastor leads up and the girls involved in the ministry all wore the same t-shirts (trendy, I may add). They had people responsible for getting water to the speaker...just planned down to every last step. And, the worship was amazing. The songs started and people rose from their seats to go to the front to worship. Very high energy.
The church was primarily people our age (20's-30's) and they brought in a speaker Judah Smith (I now follow him on Twitter: judahsmith) who is a pastor in Seattle, WA (http://thecity.org) who was very captivating, spoke the word boldly and was hilarious.
We were just very, very impressed with this church! It was a great experience!
Well, that's enough of my advertising for now. I just can't help but share the awesome things that I learn about :) I hope this makes up for the several days of posts I missed. Does anyone read this? Ha!