Finding Family

March 22, 2008

One of the great joys in life is that of family, whether that be parents and siblings or those friends we care about like family. These are the people we share life with. They have seen our best and worst days, and we have seen theirs. No matter what we are doing, we would rather be doing it with them.

So I guess you could call my Spring Break “Family Time.” I spent most of last weekend with my dad, my mom, and my brother Billy. We did not do anything too spectacular (We went to church, enjoyed some good food, and watched Back to the Future), but we enjoyed being together.

On Tuesday I traveled up to Dallas to spend some time with other family, my “SPO’7” family. One of my professors from IBEX is now working on his PhD at Dallas Theological Seminary, and about 10 of my fellow Ibexim made a road trip out to Dallas for the break. I was able to join them for a couple days.

Again, our time was not marked by anything too exciting (we didn’t sneak into the Old City or hike through any wadis), but we loved being together. On Wednesday, we slept in and had a big breakfast before doing chores all around the Bolens house. Afterwords, we took the kids to the park and played soccer and “hot lava” monster before enjoying dinner, a movie, and Blue Bell Ice Cream together. It was a very family day.

As I was getting ready to head home on Thursday, my dad called and told me that he was on his way to the hospital with my mom, who was going to have her appendix taken out. Needless to say, I didn’t waste any time getting home, and I have spent the last couple days chilling with the parents and watching a lot of college hoops.

It has been a good Spring Break. I have enjoyed all this family time, as well as some of the time I have been able to spend with the Lord. I am looking forward to heading back home (to my Hotchkiss family) on Monday and diving into what will surely be a busy rest of the semester.

But I guess one of the lessons of Spring Break is that it’s not so much the things you do in life but the family you do them with.

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Today I was confronted about my lack of blogging.

This is my repentance.

The last few weeks have been busy. They have been filled with school work–not so much sleep. But I must admit, they have been full of a lot fun…and teams, plays, and beaches.

Two weekends ago, I a good deal of time with a great group of friends. Throughout the course of various ridiculous outings, we have started calling ourselves “Team 20 Seconds.” This particular weekend was very theatrical. On Friday night, five of us saw a wonderful performance of “The Importance of Being Earnest” by the Drama Club at The Master’s College. The two leading actors live in my dorm, and it was great fun to watch them.

The next night, the whole crew headed down for a night in Hollywood. We enjoyed dinner at The Farmer’s Market at The Grove, where I had my first shwarma since IBEX. We celebrated Becca’s birthday with an incredelicious strawberry cake, and our dinner conversation was ridiculous, as usual.

After dinner, we made our way to the Pantages Theatre, where we saw WICKED! I had never been to a play like this before, so I did not know what to expect. I was definitely awed by the end of the night. The performers’ voices were incredible, and the story was interesting and funny. When we got back to the dorm, Ona and I raced to our laptops to see who could get the soundtrack the fastest. I won. Here is a picture of the team with our playbills.

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The next weekend was centered around another team–Team Uganda. This summer, I will be spending six weeks with this wonderful group on a missions trip to Uganda. From the beginning of the semester, our team has grown close quickly. We love hanging out together, so we thought we would spend the weekend hanging out in Orange County. Why Orange Country? I had the pleasure of teaching at True North, the high school group at Compass Bible Church. (You can listen to the sermon here.)

It ended up being a wonderful weekend. The Lord enabled me to preach well. I spoke on Matthew 6:25-34. Getting ready to preach was a sanctifying experience. Every time I was tempted to worry about teaching, I had to ask myself, “What am I preaching about again? Oh yeah, don’t worry about your life!”

After church, Team Uganda went to In-N-Out (where else?) and then randomly decided to go to Laguna Beach. We had a wonderful afternoon napping on the beach, checking out art galleries, talking with each other, and enjoying daylight savings time. Here is a group shot.

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On Tuesday night, Team Uganda had another random outing. For our weekly team time, we went to Diddy Riese in Westwood to celebrate Hugh Jackson III’s birthday. We were trying to hurry back to school (some of us had meetings), but when we realized we wouldn’t make it in time, we rescheduled our meetings and decided to head to Santa Monica, where we hung out on the beach and at the pier. We talked and laughed until about 1:30 before heading back to school.

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Yeah, so I don’t think we have to worry about Team Uganda getting along. I excited to see how the Lord continues to draw us closer together as a team and closer to himself. Please be praying for us this summer as we serve the Lord in Uganda!

Now I am in Texas on Spring Break. My Spring Break will involve hanging with the fam, going to Dallas to join up with some IBEX friends, and figuring out how to get shots before my Uganda trip.

Kelly Langenberg, thanks for the rebuke. You have won your brother.