The Anastasis Jr. High has been writing and compiling their reflections from the their trip to the Great Sand Dunes, they are too good not to share with everyone! Enjoy!
On the trip to the Great Sand Dunes of Colorado, we learned about the tiger salamander and how its heart literally stops for months at a time but then in the spring, by some miracle the lizard comes back to life. This resembles how we are dead to sin but then Christ awakens us and we are alive in him. Even the simplest of things can have a great impact on your life when you zoom out and look at the bigger picture.
Once we had finished our pizza and our time at the campfire, a few students who were still awake went on a walk to go star-gazing. We watched the sky for several minutes, oohing and awing rover a couple of shooting stars we saw. We giggled at each others jokes and dreamed about the stars coming together and doing a dance for us. It was like thinking about God and his power, and how he can do anything. It was awesome. And awkward.
During the trip we all as a community could feel and hear words of wisdom. Most people just pass off the details not noticing the motifs or systems God set up. He has opinions of how things should be. We don’t have to agree with it, we have to follow it. Mr. Anderson had a talk with us about how it requires sacrifice. I believe we don’t focus on perspective enough. We either do what everyone else does or we don’t contribute at all. Think about if we all measured everything by how good it was instead of how bad it was. Positive perspective would change lives, in fact is what keeps us to keep moving forward. Everything needs love to have the life of Christ. It’s intriguing that blindness could cause good. Would a positive or a love aspect have drawbacks?
Our community grew so much on the car ride there. We grew so much physically as a community when we saw the waterfall. I felt like we all felt jesus on us when the water was splashing and re occurring. When we had the moment of silence around the fire-place i felt sin leaving me and peace refilling me. The hike up the sand dunes felt like challenges in life. When we got up the dune i felt like love entered me. -Michael Z
Each night on the trip, we had an amazing campfire where we told stories or played games. Our first night we just played a game called “big booty” that made everyone laugh whenever and wherever we were. Every campfire the wind blew and you could hear the cracking of the fire as the wood sizzled. Some nights we roasted s’mores with sticks that we had to search for. The only bad part about the campfires was when the wind blew the fire in your eyes while trying to roast your marshmallow. While we did all this, there was always a beautiful starry night which gleamed above us. Each night we could see God through the stars and fire as we took a moment to thank Him for everything He has done for us through silence and prayer. This trip touched every one of us in our heart in a different way, and we will never forget it.
Everybody was sad and disappointed that we had to leave Thursday morning. Thursday morning at 9:00 am everyone had to wake up early for the ride down in the vans. The van ride went by super fast and it was fun to connect with friends that we don’t know well and have a stronger relationship with those our age or older. When we arrived in Pueblo, all the friends and I enjoyed the outdoors by playing, dancing and getting group pictures. In Pueblo we couldn’t see the dunes, but instead we saw the mountains that were beautiful from a distance away. We arrived at school at 12:00 p.m. At the end, we got out of the vans and went upstairs to journal about our favorite parts.
A couple of days ago, as we packed up the vans, everyone felt that something exciting was soon to occur. Naturally, we all had a lot of fun learning about many different subjects, all with a purpose. We learned about one of the most amazing reptiles, the Tiger Salamander, climbed to one of the highest points in the Great Sand Dunes National Park, discovered a breathtaking waterfall, and much more. Some of the high points were the extremely honest talks around the campfire, the trips in the vans with all of our friends, and the visit to Garden of the Gods. It brings you so much closer to God to just be still and appreciate what he has created. Overall, we had a super awesome trip, and bonds we forged with the other classes will last for a long time.