Somehow we crammed fourteen full-size males into my tiny living room. Then we asked this question:
Who’s your biggest living hero? Or just somebody you really look up to?
Dakota Kline brought up PewDiePie – not because of his quality of communication, but because of his success as a guy who plays games on Youtube for a living. Garret mentioned his uncle. Alex Carter mentioned his favorite manga artist, Mark Crilly. New guy, Aaron Bayne said comedian Kevin Hart. And other new guy, Tyler wants to be just like his dad.
I threw the crew for a bit of a loop with the next questions: Why do people follow his Disciples? And why do you think his first disciples followed him? The guys provided some smart and compelling answers. Then I read the end of the first chapter of John, where Jesus gets some of his first disciples. Feeling like this might be loosing some folks, I brought it back around:
What if your hero came up to you and said, “Come, follow me!”?
Alex said, “If Mark Crilly said that to me, I’d drop everything and follow him.” Most of our guys seemed pretty on-board if PewDiePie said “Come, follow me.” Then we came back to Jesus and I asked, “What if Jesus is saying that to you right now? Come, follow Me? If he’s asking you that, what do you think the implication is?” I got a few blank stares so I just explained, “To an ancient Israeli teenager, rabbis were Jedi Masters. And everybody wanted to be Jedi.”
This took us a little bit off course, with a lot of Qui Gon Jin references and dudes pretending they had light sabers.
“What I’m saying is that Jesus is like a Jedi Master. But more importantly, he’s all about navigating the complexities of life and showing us how to do that. But, how do you think we do that?”
Jeff Adams took the question and ran with it. “Maybe we need to really investigate him more?” He said. Somebody specified the importance of getting super familiar with Jesus in the Bible. And Vince drew-out the importance of community and following Jesus as a group of disciples (kinda like the group of twelve young guys that were with Vince and I). I tried to wrap things up with that theme of “We figure this out together.” We closed our discussion with a question that I wanted to hang in the air:
“In what ways don’t you want to follow Jesus?”
Then we transitioned to game-playin’.
Somewhere in the midst of that transition, the chaos factor turned up a few notches. Some of the guys ordered Pizza. Then the one with the cash got towed. We got Tyler and Tim (both new guys) set-up playing split-screen Goat Simulator. And two more dudes showed up – boosting our numbers to 16.
In the midst of all of this, I learned that it’s increasingly difficult to get sixteen dudes to take interest in two players simultaneously doing the most nonsensical things they can think of.
Sidenote: Tyler, Tim, Dakota, and Aaron had a ton of fun playing Goat Simulator. It just wasn’t as much fun to watch (especially when you have two dudes doing completely separate things).
Aaron Bayne’s chose The Floor Is Jelly. As he played, nearly five conversations went around the room at once. Aaron did great as he figured out how to bounce like a little Mexican Jumping Bean in a world made of jello. But when he got stuck, it became a perfect opportunity to reign everybody back in: “Hey guys, Aaron’s trying to figure this platforming puzzle out. Maybe we can give him our attention and try to help him out?” It worked a little.
Dakota took the helm of Shovel Knight as the conversations died down a little. Conversation turned to the value and challenge of old-school Nintendo games like Megaman, Zelda 2, and how fun Shovel Knight was to watch. Dakota enjoyed the game and the tension of the first boss battle.
Shawn Berkebile showed up late, but I wouldn’t let him miss-out on his ceremonial new-guys-always-play game-christening. His choice? Race The Sun: a game that starts at about 700 mph and only gets faster. Somebody pointed out how it was the perfect place for Shawn to show off his skating skills.
And that was it. What a great night!