Saturday, January 8, 2011


I tried to sort my thoughts tonight- it could take a month or more for me to blog through the highs and lows of this experience. 
But I'll start simple- one thing I'll have no trouble explaining is this team.  Wow.  Four of us came from Sioux Falls, and four from Michigan.  We all got connected with Poetice in our own ways, and came together Brady Bunch Style to form an incredible team. 

We are all unique individuals, very different- but we also had a ton in common and really, really enjoyed each other's company.  We experienced a series of constant extremes on this trip.  Extreme mountain tops, extreme valleys, bonding as we left our families and homes to serve together in a beautiful and heartbreaking place. 

I've never been more heartbroken than in this experience.
And we laughed hard every single day.

It was intense.  But we were a team from the beginning, and it seemed so unnatural to split in half when it was over.  We'll always have facebook, right?

Seriously.  I'd look around at my team and wonder how it was possible- every single person was really exceptional- gifted, fun, open, loving, and thrilled to be serving.  I was humbled to be a part of it.


Founder of Poetice.  Micah's a bit of a rockstar.  He has a huge heart for Zambia, looks a little like Jesus, and sings like Phil Wickham.  Basically he's the Bono of MI, USA.  He's led many teams into Zambia, and doesn't seem to get tired of answering the same questions over and over.  I loved working with him.


He's a worship leader and a really, really cool guy.  I loved watching him work as he brought together a worship team from two different places- he knows what he's doing.  Just an awesome dude.  You can check out his church here- if you're in the Holland, MI area.


Also from Michigan. John loves fish.  He lives and breathes fish.  I've never ever met anyone more passionate about fish.  He's a grad student studying fish, so he can spend the rest of his life teaching people about fish.  He's living his passions and man, it's awesome.  He's a bottomless source of information on all things random, like time travel, and parasites.  He loved to talk about parasites.  He also kept the team well rested with a steady supply of Melatonin supplements.  What an awesome guy- really- he was so much fun, and has a huge heart. 


Derek is the Project Manager for Poetice.  He is a rockstar administrator, and did an incredible job preparing and organizing our entire trip.  For those of you who don't know, I'm a bit of an organizer myself, so I was smitten with Derek's mad skills before I even met him.  He doesn't leave any details out.  He's also a really great guy. 

Derek works full time as the Director of Abstinence Education here .  So put Derek and Micah together, and you get a very strong team.  Derek is an amazing administrator, Micah is a strong visionary leader (not incredibly organized).  So united under one cause, they get an incredible amount of work done.  Also, because of Derek's professional knowledge and skill as a communicator and advocate for abstinence, purity, and prevention- he's very uniquely gifted to work with Poetice.  I loved watching him in action.


Brandon is friends with lots of my friends.  But I didn't know him at all.  I had to go all the way to Africa to meet Brandon.  He's a kind, generous, thoughtful guy.  When we left Sioux Falls, we were strangers.  Now he's my brother.  He also has wicked percussion skills.  


P Dubs.  My neighbor, my pastor.  I thought Phil was my friend going into this.  Clearly, we'd only scratched the surface.  Now I absolutely call him a brother.  Phil is an extremely talented musician- and it is so cool to see him using his gifts for the Lord. When our passions collide with our mission and passion for God- it's a beautiful explosion.  I love seeing that in Phil.


Whitney is beautiful in every way.  I needed to go all the way to Africa to get to know her too- even though we had many common good friends, we had never met until about a month before our trip.  She's got a beautiful heart and a beautiful voice.  I loved watching her in action.

Aaand, then there's me.  I have about three pictures of me from this trip.  My students took tons more, but those are on another hard drive right now.  I was there to document the trip- I'm still pulling everything together, sorting it all out.  I taught photography for just a bit-  and I have big hopes to return to teach much, much more.  More on that later.  Let's move on.

Seriously- this team was an honor.  And it was a riot.

This picture busts me up.  I have no idea what we were talking about here, but, from the looks of our faces, I'd bet money John was talking about parasites. 

I set up this shot and handed the camera to someone else- and something went wrong.  So- it's dark, but- here we are all together just before we left. 

 It was a humbling thing to be a part of something so awesome.

And now, I leave you with these....

1 comment:

Phil Wiseman said...

Thanks for the kind words. It really was an incredible team - the kind only God could put together I think. And you were very much a part of it!!!!