So… after leaving Geneva at 11:30, we made it to Pocahontas State Park (PSP) last night at 9PM (after a nice 90 minute stop in Harrisburg, PA for Cracker Barrel of course)! Though it seemed like a great time to crash, we somehow ended up doing pizza at 11PM and getting to bed a little later than I think everyone thought we would.
The cabin we’re staying in is actually a beautiful 1930’s dining hall. The original hardwood is soulful and the overall facility reminds me of a mash-up of “Cabin in the Woods” and “insert summer camp you went to as a kid here” ____________.
Today has been a day to get acclimated and relax. We started out with Pete’s soon-to-be famous chocolate chip pancakes (thanks Amanda for eating all the extras), and Dollian’s world-renowned, extra-crispy bacon. A nice late-morning hike to a nearby lake served as a great way to practice our navigation skills and here we are now: some of us sleeping, some of us enjoying a friendly (fierce) game of Monopoly, and some of us reflecting on the week to come.
We’ll meet with our park contact, Dan, in the next few hours to discuss more of PSP’s history, our to-do list for the week, and the opportunity we all have to leave something behind as we get our hands dirty this week. I hope everyone keeps their eyes on the prize as we challenge ourselves this week. What we’re doing here in Chesterfield, VA is so much more than a community service project; it’s the practical application of servant leadership as a lifestyle model. While we can observe that Robert K. Greenleaf actually coined the term “servant leadership” in his 1970’s essay “The Servant as Leader”, the concept is one that has been around for two millennia, dating all the way back to Jesus’ time on this Earth.
“The difference manifests itself in the care taken by the servant-first to make sure that other people’s highest needs are being served. The best test, and difficult to administer, is: Do those served grow as persons? Do they, while being served, grow healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely themselves to become servants? And, what is the effect on the least privileged in society; will they benefit, or, at least, not be further deprived?”
- Robert K. Greenleaf
“Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and covered His waist. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He wore.”
- John 13: 3-6
I look forward to the opportunities we share this upcoming week! Check out some of the pictures from our first day here. There will be many more to come!