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June 26, 2013

Tuesday, June 25 (Session 3, Day 10)

Summit. I am unaware of the exact considerations that were made when the founding and naming of Summit Ministries occurred; however, I believe the name accurately describes this session in a variety of ways. Just today, I realized three different ways in which to apply the name to describe it. A normal definition of the word ‘summit’ would say “the highest point of a hill or mountain”. Taken at face value, it would appear that this definition is all there is to it, but my experiences today have lent themselves to much deeper meanings that encapsulate the entirety of what Summit truly is.

As the summit of a mountain is the highest point possible, so this Summit Conference has been the highest point possible in terms of its participants. Every one of the students is friendly, intelligent, and easy to talk to; just today at the wonderfully made lunch I sat with another student I had not spoken with before and had the opportunity to strike up an intriguing and satisfying conversation while starting a relationship with one of the many capable and interesting students that inhabit the hotel that hosts this Summit Conference.

In addition, the staff members, like the students, are of a select group of individuals who are always seeking to benefit and relate with us students. Today, I also had the privilege of participating in a one on one session with my small group leader. The incredible care and attention Summit must incorporate in selecting the staff members was made all the more evident with this encouraging, well spent time connecting with my small group leader. Just as the top of Pike’s Peak, which I hiked to on Sunday, is the pinnacle of its surroundings, so also does the influence and excellence of Summit Ministries tower above the oft seen surroundings that are this world and its somewhat depraved state.

Yet it is worth realizing that neither the top of mountains nor those who reach those peaks stand alone. The success and impact of Summit Ministries relies on many different aspects, and the lessons taught in its engaging sessions also stand upon and show themselves in several various situations of daily life. From the anticipated sports time this afternoon to the satisfying meals to even the simple relaxation that occurs anytime a break or free time is available, the atmosphere of excellence and Christlikeness shines out from the lessons learned in session to the specific applications of such virtues in all other times of the day.

Another application of the name ‘Summit’ is a simple play on words that affirms the ultimate product that time at Summit is to bring about: the summation of ideas. Specifically today, the sessions at Summit really did ‘sum it’ all up. Today’s sessions featured Dr. Qureshi’s interesting description of Islam this morning, Dr. White’s categorization of the beliefs and influences of Darwin, Marx, and Freud, Dr. Adams explanation of modern Sociology, and Mr. Stonestreet’s brilliant revelation of the principles needed to capably apply the lessons learned at Summit to our journey through life. All of these sessions showed, in an exemplary way, the summary of certain lessons and values in their real world application.

By taking you through some of the most impacting events of my day in the last week of my time at Summit, I hope to convey the rich possibilities and opportunities made available to me by my participation at Summit. For anyone going to attend, or perhaps anyone who has or is already attending, or even to someone unable to attend, the question that must be answered is whether or not you will make the effort to reach the crest of the mountain of life using tools made available through experiences, knowledge, and material from the activities and virtues of Summit Ministries. It is an effort worth taking.

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