This past weekend, April and I went down to Northern VA for the Passion regional conference that was held at George Mason University's Patriot Center. Passion is a movement of college students around the world for the glory of God on college campuses. We took four students from our church down there for what turned out to be a fun and exhausting weekend.
We left Philly at about 2:30 on Friday. We had our biggest snowstorm of the winter the night before, leaving a couple of inches of snow on the roads. April and I were a little afraid that the trip down there would be painful when considering a typical Friday afternoon rush combined with bad driving weather, but we made great time and arrived in plenty of time to register and get dinner before the conference started.
I took the guys to go sleep at my good friend Micah and his lovely wife Jess's apartment Friday night. We had some Ting soda, got a little sleep, did some Gospelrobics, then were treated to a feast of a breakfast the next morning including eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns, grits (none for me though - I don't know why people like that stuff), fruit, and coffee. Micah is undoubtedly one of the most generous people I've ever met, and it was a blessing to be able to hang out with him for a while and experience some true hospitality from him and his wife.
The conference itself was a bit overwhelming (we spent about 10 of the 30 hours we were in Virginia inside the Patriot Center), but inspiring and significant for everybody. We prayed, sang, danced a little bit, and heard some great stories and encouraging words about living fully in God's love and plan for us. For me, it was a much needed opportunity to meet with God and hear encouragement from him about my life.
We got back to Philly at about 2:30am Sunday, and I had to get up at 7 to be at church on time that morning, so I pretty much slept the whole day Sunday, waking up just long enough to fix the headlights on my car (which both somehow managed to burn out this weekend, forcing me to drive around with my brights on at night and anger countless motorists) and go to ShopRite for groceries. Although it was an exhausting weekend, there is nothing like the fun of a road trip and the joy of getting to know people better and experience intimacy with God together.
Some photos from our trip:
The students in our group.
April and I at one of the sessions.
A view of the stage during worship.