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July 12, 2012

Hail! Fire! And Bauman!

Hail! Fire! And Bauman!

The past week has been filled with excitement and exhaustion in two extremely different climates. I find myself constantly asking, “Have we really been here for twenty days now?” Time flies when you have 12+ books to read in 7 weeks! During the weekend of the 15th, Colorado Springs survived the biggest hailstorm I have ever experienced in my lifetime (Now, you must understand that I live in the extremely humid and hot state of Georgia where any amount of snow or icefall is considered a natural disaster). Of course, I was told after the fact that the storm itself was rather small compared to previous Colorado hailstorms.

Following this surreal weekend, Monday brought more excitement and even more exhaustion. However, these feelings seemed irrelevant compared to the stunning beauty of the Rocky Mountain National Park. After our hike, one thought came to mind: Georgians take pride in what we call ‘mountains’ in our state, but in reality they’re just hills. The view of Long’s Peak and the other mountain ranges lead me to think of the majestic God we serve – a God that is full of awe. Early Wednesday morning a small bear was seen lurking around the Summit hotel! With great enthusiasm, Jeff, Joseph, and I chased it back into the woods!

None of this excitement can compare to the catastrophe that occurred Saturday afternoon. Fire! In a canyon near Manitou Springs, Colorado, a fire began to spread throughout the dry landscape of this gorgeous state. With no rain in the forecast, the Waldo Canyon fire spread rapidly. At 1:00 a.m. Sunday morning, all 220 Summit students, staff, and speakers woke to depart from the Summit hotel. The evacuation went surprisingly smoothly. Within an hour of when we first awoke, we arrived at our new home for the week, Mountain Springs Church. The church graciously opened their facilities to Summit.

Ever since our arrival, I have been impressed by the hospitality of the church, local families, and surrounding businesses. They have provided pillows, sleeping bags, towels, paper products, over 150 cases of water, and many other things. Our stay here has been incredibly blessed. All our needs and more have been met. It has been truly spectacular to see the body of Christ respond so rapidly and willingly to this unique situation. We had the opportunity to give back to the Church by weeding most of the plant islands in the middle of their parking lot.

The fire has become a national priority, with some of the nation’s best firefighters and the Air Force working to contain the fire. Hundreds of structures have been destroyed but no lives have been lost. Please continue to pray for those who are working to protect the homes and lives of the people in Colorado Springs. Pray that despite the chaotic conditions, God’s supernatural power and unfailing mercy will shine through the smoke and bring those who are lost to His marvelous light. When Monday, June 25th arrived, Summit’s classes continued as usual. For Semester students, however, a new day has dawned with a new, challenging type of class featuring none other than . . . Dr. Bauman. But you will have to wait until the next blog post to hear more about that . . .


Gene Hynson

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