I've decided that the more diversity in a group, the better.
Our group of 9 consisted of 5 Hispanic, 1 White, and 3 Black teenagers; 1 college student, 2 entering college this fall, 1 Senior in high school, 2 younger high school students, and 3 middle school students. The maturity of the older ones encouraged the younger ones to step up...and they did. The positive ones in the group outweighed the negative ones...changing any inkling of a negative comment to a positive word of encouragement.
Whether it was putting together a tent...
Climbing a mountain...
Rappelling off the side of a mountain...
Or helping clean up...
The teenagers participated without complaint. Their positive and willing attitudes created an enjoyable trip for all involved (fyi...I haven't always been able to say that! :) )
Each evening, at our devotional times, Mr. Edd would ask them to reflect on their day. Their eagerness to reflect and apply what they were learning to their personal life was encouraging. On the rappel site, I had heard Nazareth telling someone, "You need to rappel...even if you're scared! If you do this now, you will realize that you can conquer anything. It will help you later." Each evening they each had something new to share.
We saw several shooting stars when we camped out...roasted marshmallows and made s'mores over a campfire...spent an hour and a half by ourselves being completely quiet, listening to the sounds around us, and reading our Bible...learned to fish (and caught some!) in a lake surrounded by the beautiful mountains...hiked a portion of Mt. Shavano...swam in a pool filled by the natural hot springs of the mountains...visited the quaint town of Leadville...learned neat facts about mining, the Stage Coach road, the names and history of the mountains...and realized that having new experiences can change the way we look at life.
Though we didn't get to do an audio blog about Day 4, below are some reflections about Day 2 and Day 3:
Wilderness Trek--Day 2
Wilderness Trek--Day 3