JP 2017 Update - Days 20-31

Jambo! (It means hello... to Jesus... Your best friend...)

As I start my day while I am on JP, I start it with a book my mom originally got at a yard sale.  She enjoyed it so much that she bought a second one for my father.  He never used it; I found it a year or so ago, and it's one that I enjoy reading.  "Prayers That Avail Much" is a book I have gone to on multiple occasions when I just need to pray but need a little guidance.  My favorite one isn't even actually a part of the book originally.  It is a wake-up prayer that my mom found inserted in her copy.  It starts like so:

This is your day Lord.  I want to be at Your disposal.  I have no idea what these next 24 hours will contain.  But Before I get dressed, I want You to know that from this moment throughout this day, I’m Yours, Lord.  Help me to be a branch that abides in the vine, to lean on You, to draw strength from You, and to have You fill my mind and thoughts.  Take control of my senses so that I am literally filled with your presences and power and dynamic.  I want to be Your tool, Your vessel today.  I can’t make it happen.  Without You, I can accomplish nothing.  Lord, fill me with Your Spirit.
— Anonymous Prayer from My Mother's Copy of "Prayers That Avail Much"

I must first off, apologize.  I have been so crazy busy that I haven't been able to write.  I didn't even get a chance to talk to my mom or sisters for about a two weeks!  My days are filled with everything.  I am loving every second of it, don't get me wrong!  Last week, the staff was great!  The program director last week was Drew Ensz, he is the campus minister for Mason.  He also brought his 6-year-old son, Josiah; who was our Executive Assistant for the week.  Josiah put life and smiles on the tired staff's faces during each staff meeting.  I found myself wanting to come to the beginning of each meeting because he reminded me so much of Corbin, the 3-year-old I nanny.  Corbin is one of the wackiest kids I have met and I love him to pieces.  There isn't a day I don't leave his house with a Corbin Quote or a fun story to tell about my day.  I affectionately refer to him as my child.  Seeing Josiah last week made me realize I really missed my Goober.   Every morning Corbin would be waiting in the window for me to arrive and the second he saw me, a huge smile spread across his face.  Josiah and I had similar activities.  Josiah shared his girl problems and that he had 2 girls who wanted to marry him.   He asked Naomi to marry him, but Naomi lives several hours away, and Ashley asked Josiah if he would marry her.  He was really struggling with it and when Drew told Josiah to ask us for advice, I asked Josiah to marry me.  He promptly said, "Oh no that's not what I need!" and threw his hands on his head, a smile wide across his face.  Over the next 2 days, he would not talk or look at me, all because I asked him to marry me.  Wednesday morning Drew asked Josiah "what Morgan was", Josiah said, and I quote, "Difficult!"  Later on Wednesday, David Cara, and Mayce all came to have lunch with the staff last week and they got to meet my staff.  Josiah and David hit it off very well, Josiah even asked David if they could have a playdate!  Ha!  Needless to say, I am very jealous of my boyfriend who gets to have playdates with the 6-year-old I (jokingly) want to marry!!

The staff last week was great!  I made many wonderful connections with staff and I am so grateful that this is the opportunity I get to have.  I loved having the Camp Director (CD), Assistant Camp Director (ACD), Worship Lead (WL), and Program Director (PD) stay at camp.  I loved our impromptu meetings after the campers left.  Each week I express how much I love the staffers.  By this point, you are probably tired of hearing how much they have impacted me.  But each week, I work with a completely new staff.  Each week, 12 strangers show me new ways God loves me and how I can better serve others.  Each week, I make a completely new set of friends.  Each week, there is a new reason I wish Saturday wouldn't come as fast.  Anna and Laura were a great team and led the camp through another interesting JP week.  Josh, our rec lead, was ALWAYS with campers in the middle of some wonky game.  Ellora did an amazing job as our media lead.  Every night, she had pictures from that day during worship!  Savannah and Leslie were some of the most fun kitchen staff and reminded me so much of Mayce and Joy.  The site leaders were awesome!  Britt, who made the argument that adopting a dog who had a previous owner should be marketed as "used dogs", was one of the funniest and knowledgeable men I was privileged to work with (aside from my own Poppy).  Abby was such a hard worker and always was ready to jump in and help with whatever Britt needed to be done.  The J-Staff was ALWAYS on top of any job that needed to be done.  We affectionately called ourselves "Britt's Used Dogs."

I will say that I am exhausted.  I wake up around 8 am and go to bed around 12:30 or 1 am.  I wake up and go.  There is no stop, there is no break, there is no pause.  I love it.  When I was a volunteer at Manassas St. Thomas Vacation Bible School, my favorite role was one I created, I loved being a gopher.  I didn't register as a volunteer, but I would show up every day and just do what was ever needed.  I loved filling in with a new job every day.  Since I left MST, I haven't really had that opportunity until now.  I love working with the youth at Grace, but there is always consistently organized chaos.  While MST VBS was temporary free chaos that I would create.  I loved having the freedom to create my own job.  I love being the intern.  Walking into my first week with staff in Richmond, I thought about if I were to come back, what role would I apply for?  I got to see every other roleplay out, and over the last 3 weeks, I still stick to my first choice of staying the summer intern.  I love seeing the new staffers and new leaders and new campers come through and see the changes each week.  I love meeting all of these wonderful new people.  I want to see projects completed to the end   I want to see clients served.  I want to make sure their needs are met.  I want to see people get helped.

One woman named Sandy asked for a wheelchair ramp.  Todd and I visited her about a week ago and I when he asked specifically what the doctor said she had, she ran into the house and got a list of things she was diagnosed with.  At the top of the list was Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), which is what my David has.  I have only seen David in a POTS attack once and it was one of the scariest things I have seen.  Sandy was really trying to put on a good face and push through it, but she couldn't really stand for long and I could just see her focusing on every single action she was making.  Seeing how David was in his POTS attack, really made me feel for Sandy and I saw and understood what POTS is like, seeing her in such struggle, I ached for her.  As days went on, Todd and I tried to get in contact with a woman who we thought might not need her ramp anymore.  We finally got in contact with the other woman last night and she said she still used her ramp, meaning we couldn't find one for Sandy.  I have been thinking and praying for Sandy the last week and I kept racking my brain for ways we could get Sandy a ramp, at least until next summer so we could come back and build her a permanent one next fall.  Aluminum ramps cost about $3,000.  Todd was really leaning towards not doing anything.  He and I sat at the table in the staff office racking our brains as to what we could do for Sandy...  I started tearing up and asked if we could shuffle things for the other aluminum ramp users.  He asked me why I felt so much for Sandy; I explained how I difficult it was to see David through his POTS attack and living with POTS is no fun.  Around lunchtime today, Todd texted me saying he found a ramp for Sandy!   I am so excited to see how God uses this team the next 2 weeks as we assemble her aluminum ramp for her.  I will definitely be on her site on Monday morning helping the kids get ready.

I miss everyone immensely!  Thursdays are always the most difficult days because I have to go back to work.  I love everything I am doing here and my experience at JP is easily one of the greatest influences in my life.  I am grateful for the 3 staff members that I got to work with over the last 3 weeks.  They have helped shape me into a stronger leader and discern where God wants me.

Thank you for your love, prayers, and support!  I love you all!!

Blessings,

Morgan Combs