Winter is quickly approaching or depending on where you live maybe it is already here. We got our first real taste of icy conditions this past weekend just outside of Knoxville, Tennessee. The thermometer hovered around 35 degrees all weekend and it was nice to put on wool socks and hoodies.
One of the best parts of winter coming around is the good wholesomeness of an excellent bowl of hot chili. Smelling the meaty aroma waft through the house and filling up a bowl with the flavorful chili and topping it with some shredded cheese. One of the secrets inside a pot of chili is that the second time around the chili is even better. After the flavors have had a chance to mingle and mix in the pot for a good day or so.
This past weekend in Knoxville was our second time being with the youth group from Meridian Baptist Church and like chili it was better the second time around! The first time we played for them was at St. George Island, Florida for their summer camp. We got to know the kids really well and build relationships with them while at camp and it was great to see them all again!
We left Tallahassee, Florida (our hometown) on friday at about 9:30am and began the lengthy 9 plus hours up through Georgia and part of Tennessee. We hit up Chik-fil-A for breakfast and passed the hours by watching movies and playing parking lot football at random gas station stops. One of the most interesting parts of traveling from Florida to Tennessee is always the change in terrain. The flat Florida sand begins to compact into rugged stone and elevated mountains by the time Tennessee arrives.
We arrived at around 6:45pm and the plan was to lead worship at 8pm. We are used to quick set ups so in the 40 degree rain we began to unload the trailer and set up our equipment. It was great to see Pastor Dana again and meet the groups newly hired youth pastor Josh. We got in a quick soundcheck before it was time to start and as the lights turned off we started on the first notes of Lead Me to The Cross.
The worship services were done in a cabin type of thing. Luckily it had good heating and lighting. It was fairly small but big enough to fit everyone and it served it's purpose. We have learned in this band that especially when leading worship God doesn't need our perfect sound systems or concert halls. He needs a heart of surrender and a soul bent towards Him.
This past weekend was a great time for ourselves to meet up with our friends from Knoxville as we pursue our Savior together and it was a great retreat for ourselves to spend some time in the beautiful scenery of east Tennessee. Meridian Baptist has been great to all of us and we feel like we are practically part of their youth group at this point.
It's been a very busy month or so for us, we have been playing non-stop and have enjoyed all the people we've gotten to meet and the places we have been. (Wish all of them could be as beautiful as the smokies though :) We are headed to Fleming Island, Florida this weekend to play a concert and lead worship. It will be our second time heading back to this particular church and we are praying that the chili effect will follow us there as well!