Monday, June 17, 2013
College Students Changing the World One Project at a Time - Guest Post by Brian Pellegrini
My friends and I have been to Port Au Prince, Haiti, working with orphans. We saw and experienced things that broke our hearts and made an impact in our lives . It made us think about how much we take for granted. We witnessed homelessness and poverty that make the U.S. poverty look like a cake walk. During all of this, I grew much closer to God, and learned to thank Him for the friends and family that I have been blessed with.
Some of the group I hang with have been to Honduras and Ecuador on mission trips. Nearly all of us have helped lead youth group at our church, even though we are only a few years older than those we are leading. Some of my peers lead worship in our church (ah, I skipped that project, LOL). But my former pastor did make me preach one Sunday! Wow, that was a trip!
I love the fact that my friends inspire me to do good things with my life. They have never pressured me to do things that could mess up my life. Real friends do not do that. I have the greatest friends in the world. They stick by me no matter what and make me accountable for the things I do. When I am with them, I feel like nothing can go wrong. We are always together. It is not unusual to see a group of us hanging out, going to the movies, or playing basketball. They help me with my faith, pushing me, challenging me, pushing my heart and brain to get closer with God. I do not know where I would be without them.
Not only am I blessed with great friends, but I have great parents too. What can I say about them? They are amazing! My mom and dad support me through everything. They are helping me pay for college. They have supported me while I have changed my college major three times and transferred schools twice. They have been behind me the whole way. They even let me live in their house and feed me (and trust me, THAT is expensive!). They have the most fun too. My mom likes to dance, as most of you know, and as much as it embarrasses me, I love seeing her happy. My dad is one of the biggest rednecks ever. We shoot, go mudding, and go to the woods all the time. I love my parents!
At the end of the summer, my fellow College Youth Leaders and I are leading a program at our church called Youth Explosion. This will be the sixth year our church has had this week long event. Due to a budget crisis at our church, our church was unable to bring in the outside speaker and helpers that we normally use. Just when it looked like the whole thing would be cancelled, we college students stepped up and took on the whole thing. We are doing all the fundraising, planning, music, videos, teaching, and getting the food, doing whatever it will take to impact 100 teens for a week. In a day when many college students are abandoning the church, my friends and I are very proud to see years of hard work that others invested in us come to fruition as we become the leaders for reaching the next generation. Do not give up on us, we are JUST getting started.
Trust me, I have friends that are proud of a lot WORSE things than ^^^^^^ so rejoice with us about what God is doing in our lives. It is something to be proud of.