They departed this morning, leaving behind a note on the kitchen counter. Then they came back, because one of the guys left his backpack and wallet in our livingroom.
Another hug goodbye.
You would've thought they had stayed a whole week with how comfortable we were with each other, and how grateful they were for our housing them. It was an overnight stay, preceded by a presentation at our Wednesday youth gathering, and a late night nosh at Applebee's.
Located in Christiansburg, VA, Ignite is a college program (within our church denomination), focused on training young people to live a life dedicated to ministry and leadership. These students representing the school, came with enthusiasm and passion for education and the Gospel. It was really fun to see them engage with a room full of 100 teenagers looking for "what's next after high school" inspiration.
James, Kenny, and Bri made up the team. James experienced radical redemption four years ago and has a desire to meet people in their brokenness. He doesn't know what that will look like yet, but he's open to wherever God leads him. Kenny loves recruiting kids and wants to be the president of Ignite someday. Bri sings in a band, and has aspirations to open a sandwich/coffee (in that order) shop that celebrates the local arts, or drive a van around the country meeting people and "hearing their stories."
It was really wonderful meeting the team and dreaming with them about their life ahead. They have all left home, traveled to other countries, spoken in front of crowds, lived on meager means, opened their lives to pain and healing, and shared their hearts with strangers-turned-friends. They are bold, and they give me great hope for the next generation.
I couldn't help but feel a little maternal when they were preparing to get back on the road. We offered them coffee, fruit, granola bars, cookies, and hot showers.
They offered us accommodations in Virginia.
We're checking our calendar.