Graduating college is a strange experience. For the first time in your life you step out of academia and are now trusted to provide yourself a living (and pay back all those pesky debts).
Unlike so many of my collegiate counterparts, I have not lined up a full-time job. I’ve had my mind set on working for YouthWorks this summer before beginning a job search or accepting any other positions.
But, having graduated in December, I was left with 5 months to fill. Enter the Mission Extension Grant. Real Resources, the parent company of YouthWorks and Youth Specialities, provides this opportunity for previous YouthWorks staff to return to communities that they have served in as YouthWorks staff. With the hospitality of New Covenant Fellowship, I returned to Logan to continue doing ministry.
So how did I fill those few months? Let’s see:
The most common moments were spent in awe of the beauty of the little mountain town. New Covenant has the best view in town and there were plenty of moment spent admiring this view.
In the beginning months in Logan I was unsure how to best utilize my time. Knowing the church’s clothes closet was in disarray, I spent much of my time organizing endless racks of clothes.
Will the help of some mission teams and the cooperation of the church, the clothes closet was successfully organized, cleaned, and labeled.
One of the reasons I was drawn to Logan was the facilities available at New Covenant. The church resides in an old middle school and has a lot of real estate to work with. Included in their property is a gym that is properly utilized for Kids Club and Outrageous Sports Camps by YouthWorks, but remains empty for much of the year. With the permission of the church, I started an open gym for community teens every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday as well as connect a local basketball team to New Covenant, with the hopes of a continuing relationship.
Some days the gym looked like this:
But it usually looked like this:
Perhaps the most exciting objective was to create a Youth Room for New Covenant. The church had hoped that I would be able to create a youth group given my relationship with local, but no such group ever materialized. But I was able to provide them a space for a youth ministry should the church ever have a more fruitful endeavor. YouthWorks will also be using this as their new Club Room–YouthWorks expanded their cap from 72 students to 90 and the previous space was no longer viable.
The room was original an extra space for the clothes closet, and so required quite a bit of cleaning.
But once the place was clean, there was plenty of space to work with.
So, we built a stage, carpeted, and painted the room to transform it from under-used space to a vibrant and versatile space for ministry.
Logan really is a wonderful little community. While most people wouldn’t view Logan with the joy that I have, I know that God is present in the midst of a broken community. It’s no secret that Logan struggles with poverty and drugs, but their presence doesn’t mean God’s absence. In contrast, God is all the more active.
Part of me will miss living in Logan, though another part of me was ready to move on. But moving forward the little mountain town will hold a special place in my heart.