Learned from today’s youth

Perf.

“Perf” is short for “perfect.” It’s a word I learned last week with our youth group while performing tornado clean-up  in Washington, IL. I left inspired by our young people’s work ethic. When the work was terribly monotonous or got physically challenging, for the most part, they were great workers. Have a look at the tornado’s path (which left things far from perfect):

Washington, IL tornado path Nov. 2013

the tornado’s path

There are times when I’m with people socially, and they wonder aloud about what’s wrong with kids today, but I left feeling reassured that we’ll be OK. Our group is structured in a way to give youth multiple leadership opportunities. Many of them rise to the occasion and perform superbly.

I also learned last week that, just like adults, youth are at different points in their faith journey at any given time. I would like to believe that our group’s work ethic comes from their faith, from the teachings about the Corporal and Spiritual Acts of Mercy, but wherever it comes from, I am thankful that I was able to work alongside everyone.

I was thankful for my instruction in learning and teaching styles, for being cognizant about management and selling styles that I get to witness while at my retail job, and extremely grateful for my living situation at home.

Learned from working with our youth:

  • Everyone participates best when assigned jobs according to their physical, mental, and skill strengths.
  • Respect begets respect.
  • Taking breaks in the Illinois heat is a great refresher — my team took breaks for water, playing, photo opps, snacks and meals, and a garage sale.
  • Chain saws yields scads of enthusiasm.
  • Raking for hours on end does not.
  • Demolition yields enthusiasm.
  • Tedium does not. See my point about taking breaks.

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