reconnection with cousins and faith

September 26, 2004

I never really like sunday evenings, they always seem to have too much of the monday in them and not enough of the friday in them. Essentially I find myself usually trying to squeeze the last bit of weekend out of my time and therefore am rarely productive. Plus in this case, after spending the weekend in PA, I feel like I have so much to process and not enough time to do it in.

So the weekend…

Although my cousin’s wedding was my main reason for going out to PA, it ended up being one of the least important parts of the weekend. My focus ended up spending as much time as possible connecting with Laura, my closest cousin in age. She and I have been going through very similar experiences in the past year and despite our very different places in life have really been able to connect and have really meaningful conversations. Much of what I spent time talking to her about over the weekend was some of the changes or maybe a better way to say it would be areas of growth, she has experienced in the past year. She is currently living in the city of Lancaster in awesome little apartment with three other girls. Yet more importantly she is a part of a group called Gemeinschaft (Christian Community in German) which a very spiritually based intentional community of people who choose to hold each other accountable within their relationships. Another large part of Laura’s life is her involvement with NightWatch which she got involved with through an internship in Kansas City over the summer. In short her and the others in NightWatch focus on providing 24 hour prayer for both Lancaster County and the nation. They do this by meeting from 10pm till 2am 6 nights a week. Part intercessory prayer, part devotional, the evening offers an informal place for others to join them in worship. Yet at the heart of their ministry is the belief in the power of prayer.

While I originally had a lot of doubts about some of Laura’s choices and wasn’t sure how I would react to some of the newer dimensions of her faith, instead I was really impressed with the realness, intimacy, and integrity I saw in her faith and in the faiths of those she has surrounded herself with. It really awakened in me a lot of questions about my own faith and the difficulty in making a head faith, that one of the heart. I really feel that I have had a lot of significant things happen to me in the past year, yet I haven’t had the time or tools to deal with them all. Also in the past few weeks I have had several meaningful conversations about the difficulty with finding the spark in your faith, with which to base a more heartfelt faith upon. Along with that, I have for a very long time been dealing with the feeling of a having this underlying pain/sadness running along underneath my life. I have never been able to figure out why this is and have been frustrated at why I often have trouble feeling happy, despite the multitude of goodness I have in my life. It was while driving back with Laura from visiting her NightWatch on Saturday night at approx. 2:30 in the morning that I first realized that there might be a connection between the feelings of emptyness and that of missing the spark of my faith.
So this has obviously caused me to really think about how I want to be spending life and on what I should be placing my emphasis.

In less related topics, the wedding was very nice and although not my style a pleasure to attend. And Jerad and Nicole are now in the Dominican Republic for their honeymoon. Oh and when I first found out about their honeymoon location, I was like “why would they be going to SST for their honeymoon?” Maybe I have been at Goshen to long…. 🙂


  1. hey kid. i just wanted to clarify that gemeineschaft actually means “community” in swiss german i believe. no big deal though. keep posting, i’m enjoying them.

  2. That’s funny about the Dominican Republic Honeymoon. Love reading your stuff, even though I am a few years behind. Thanks!

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