Hey everybody! This is Erin from Blue team. The summer is quickly coming to an end as I sit in the van on the way to our last destination. I have to admit, there is a strange mix of emotions mulling around my mind. On one hand, I miss my family and friends and the other teams. But as I look at my team members in the van with me, there is part of me that doesn’t want it all to end.
I remember when tour began, and everything was new and fresh to everyone. I hadn’t been on summer tour for about three years, and I knew Lift would be a shock in comparison to my last tour. But it was exciting. Our team was ready to serve. We didn’t know too much about each other yet. We were still polite and reveling in each other’s company. Nothing could be better.
But I didn’t realize what God had planned for all of us as a team. I look back on the summer and remember the outrageous times in the van. It was simply understood that if you fell asleep in the van with your mouth open, you would be awakened with some sort of food in your mouth. I personally received the Emergen-C treatment, while others had everything from crackers to Reese’s Pieces so intricately placed in, on, or around their mouths.
In the midst of these happenings, Taylor and Hayden would play their music in the front of the van while mimicking the singer or lip-syncing to scream-o music. And then there is “Sleepy Spence,” as the guys so lovingly nicknamed him. Spencer is probably one of the most tired people I have ever seen. It doesn’t matter how much sleep this man gets, he is always on the verge of drifting away into his wonderful world of rest. Now not everybody slept as easily as Spencer did. Dani always had her pink eye mask and pink earplugs and pink Disney princess blanket in hand to help her fall asleep. Next are the “Androids.” In case you didn’t know, this is in reference to Ben and Colin. These two will defend Androids to the death despite the incessant teasing from the other guys on the team that Macs are ten times better. Hm…they don’t seem to complain all that much when good ol’ TomTom fails us and the GPS on one of the Androids gets us to where we need to be. Then there is Grace. She was always so sweet by encouraging Taylor when he was driving. It wasn’t until the guys pushed her a little too far that her spicy side would come out. She definitely could keep up with their innocent jabs at her music choices.
Even more than the good times in the van, I have really learned so much about these people I call my teammates. We have seen each other at our best and at our worst. We have had our disagreements and little spats. (I never thought I’d be comfortable enough with the guys to tell them that they are being annoying when they squish the “Snookie” pouf in my hair for the fortieth time!) These people have truly become my family, and I never realized how much this was true until this past week. We all stayed at Grace’s house for about three days and relaxed. We swam in her lake, hung out with her mom and sister, and ate a ton of food. I knew I could consider these men to be my brothers when they chased me down in the front yard and proceeded to dump me in the water where the mud was a good three feet deep!
More than anything though, I have enjoyed traveling with these people. They all are incredibly passionate about serving the Lord and serving each other. Even though we are all different, God has used these differences to allow us to be able to minister more effectively to kids this summer. He has granted us patience with each other when tension arose. He has allowed us to work through any disagreements with grace and understanding. Any success we have had this summer in leading people closer to Him can only be attributed to His leading in each of our lives individually. So publicly, I would like to thank God and my team for an amazing summer. I know that God will continue to use the Heartsong ministry to draw people to Himself, and I am blessed to have been His instrument for one little summer.