For starters, there really is no such thing as a ‘normal’ day here. There is almost always some sort of oddity or scheduled meeting that separates one day from another, but here is a rough sketch of what a day looks like for me:
Between 9am and 11am I am typically having personal study and preparation time. All summer long we are studying the book of Hebrews at our Large Group on campus worship and Bible Study meetings. The guys are all taking turns preaching on a chapter or so of the book (I’m doing Hebrews 4-5:11). It is also the book that we are studying together as an internship so in the mornings I have been taking two hours or so to really be immersed in the text. Also we are reading two other books: “Methodical Bible Study” (which is a very useful reference teaching us how to better study the Bible and truly handle the Word properly) and “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” (which is actually published by the company Peter works for and is a great study in team dynamics and how to have a better functioning team.
Sometimes we have team meetings during this time for strategy, Large Group planning, evaluations, prayer, etc.
Mondays from 10:30am through 4:30pm I am working in the office Headquarters. I have been fortunate enough to be helping with landscaping duties and general office fix-its. Other interns spend their time doing office duties and whatever ways we can help out with (two of us are in each day).
Typically around 11am I’ll head onto campus, usually to the Student HUB. About half of the time I will have lunch plans with people I have met, a chance for us to get to know each other better, for me to take them into town and eat out, and for discipleship. The other half of the time I will set about to see who I can meet that day. I’m fortunate in the fact that I do not have rigid class times or homework to be bound by so that I am free to care for whoever is available. Often I’ll try to see if I know anyone there and if they’d like to grab some food with me or I’ll just get some myself and set about to find who is eating alone (which there really seem to be a lot of at PSU). The people eating alone typically are doing homework, studying, reading the newspaper, or are on the phone/listening to music etc. Sometimes they are not interested in company or conversation at all, but often people really do appreciate human interaction.
The great thing about doing a Ministry internship is that people usually get around to asking me what I’m doing here this summer and it’s an instant opportunity to share the fact that the college ministry group that I’m involved in at Muhlenberg has so affected my life that I’ve got the opportunity to help out here for the summer by studying the Bible and seeing who else is interested in doing so as well. It’s a great way to judge their reaction and learn what kind of conversation will serve them best. Sometimes it’s about why I’m so passionate about Bible study and what God has done in my life and often it’s about football, the huge size of this school, what they are studying, where they live, why they are coming here, where are their favorite places to eat, etc.
From around 1pm to 5pm I’ll usually be on campus meeting and hanging out with people. This is a great time for playing Frisbee on the lawns, getting shown different dorm rooms, playing basketball, watching soccer with a crowd of fans. This is also great time to catch up with people I’ve met already and want to spend time with and meet others.
Dinners are always sort of different. On Sunday night all of the men in the internship eat soup and bread and watch a movie selected by one of us. We take that time to evaluate worship and the talk from last Friday’s large group and offer feedback. On Tuesdays my apartment always eats together and we each take turns cooking, it’s a clam time for us to catch up with each other. Wednesdays are dinner for the entire internship group. Each apartment takes turn cooking those meals. Several Saturdays throughout the summer we have been invited to eat at a staff families’ house. Otherwise I try to spend my dinners with guys or groups on campus. It’s also a good time to invite people off campus for them to try the down-town options as well.
My nights are typically different as well. Tuesday at 7:30 I am leading a small group men’s study through the Gospel of John. We are really hoping to build a community of guys who want to really commit to learning about the scriptures/God together. Last week we had six new guys come out! Friday nights are our Large Group Bible study and worship. That starts at 7pm and runs typically until 8:30. At that time we have some after activity planned for us to enjoy the rest of the night together.
If during 1pm to 5pm I was on campus the whole time I’ll typically spend my night back at the apartment doing study, hopefully updating this page, or planning for my talk or preparing worship. If I spent some afternoon time doing that I’ll spend my nights on campus enjoying time with the students who want to find something to fill their nights with. We’ve watched some movies, played pool, board games, lots of Frisbee and soccer. Sometimes I’ll take some guys out for dessert or something and I get to know them better and learn to disciple them.
And that’s an “average” week!