Journey Across America: California

We did it. We made it all the way across the country this summer. Our "trip" across America came to a close yesterday afternoon with a "visit" to sunny California. All summer, six young ladies have gathered at my kitchen table in their red Journey Across America T-shirts and their patriotic straw hats to have an adventure and learn about God. We've tackled subjects like freedom, friendship, turning to God in the difficult times and being who God made you to be. As these girls have absorbed the word and truth of God this summer, I've seen them grow and become better friends. They know scripture and pieces of the U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. And, we've had a blast.

Yesterday, we visited The Golden State -- California. California's state motto is "Eureka!" which means "I have found it." It's a remnant of the Gold Rush days when the largest mass migration of people in history made their way to California to search for gold. However, we discovered yesterday that the most important thing for us to look for in this life is not gold or fame, which are two common reasons that people point their lives toward California. The most important thing we can seek after is God. We learned Matthew 6:33, which says "Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you." The pursuit of God needs to be the No. 1 priority in our lives.

To get this point across to the girls, we spent time yesterday seeking things. They looked for 10 slips of paper with things about California on them. Once they found the papers, they had to look up on Google or in the reference books I had whatever was written on their slip of paper. They had to find one fact about each thing and share it with the group. The point was that we can seek information about God just like we can seek information about other things. When we seek God, we seek Him through prayer and reading the Bible.

We also sampled some food from California. California grows more fruits and vegetables than any other state in the United States. We sampled plums, peaches, broccoli, carrots, grape tomatoes and strawberries. The fruit went over well; the vegetables not so much.

The end of our day yesterday was spent making a movie because California is home to Hollywood. The movie had to include their verse for the day, the state motto and everyone had to be in it. The girls wrote the script, found costumes and acted out the movie while I filmed it. We even had to do a second take on one of the scenes. We finished by gathering around the computer and watching our movie masterpiece.

Next week, we have our grand finale where the girls put into practice everything they have learned this summer. We'll be headed out on a scavenger hunt based on the movie "National Treasure." Look back here next Thursday for a report on whether the girls solved the mystery.