Friday, May 22, 2020

Family Top 5 Bottom 5 AND Mid-Year Update on 2020 Goals

My family Top 5 Bottom 5 during shelter in home. And 2020 goal mid-year updates.

Bottom 5
5. Hair. I'm a glob of grease an 2 inches length away from a legit comb-over.
4. We are all doing video workouts but SOMEONE usually ends up yelling, crying and storming off.
3. Quiet times with God and solitudes at home in a confined place are not easy.
2. Helping kids with school at home and managing their stress. Wow. Eject button?
1. Fights! Fights about puppies, dishes, fairness, chores, messes and triggering each other (and who's actual fault it is for triggering/being triggered!)

Top 5
5. New inside jokes, life-long memories, family pics in an RV we rented and grit developed!
4. Video work outs all together. It was bottom 4 AND its a top 4 too.
3. Watching shows together: Parks & Rec. Brooklyn 99. Tiger King.
2. Staying connected with teammates in YL for work, yet with no travel.
1. The experience of birthing and raising 11 puppies has been an incredibly bonding experience. The birth process was the most united, bonding experience we have ever had. Janna delivered the pups and popped the sac, Tanya cut the cord and cleared the airways, Dietrich weighed them in and I did my part...I videoed the whole thing from two angles, and other helpful things too (I swear!)

Personal Goals for 2020 Update
I was nervous to check progress. I lost the regular rhythms and relationships but gained TIME to do what is important. I definitely have learned to now say "if the Lord wills" before every goal.

1. Say “no” to 10 ‘good’ things. (In order to say yes to best) So far 5/10.
2. 2-3 hour solitudes to pray, journal, reflect. 11 have been at home, not ideal! 19/52
3. 104 eves/days of 'no work' to read, serve, pray, play with family. 34/104 (catching up but still behind, this one is hard for me.)
4. Take 10 middle schoolers and Dietrich to YL summer camp..this will need to be creative!
5. Encourage Tanya to accomplish all HER goals. (a win for her is a win for me!)
6. Going running WITH others: 24/40 runs.
7. Big 'asks' on behalf of Young Life to reach more kids: 5/20.
8. All-4-of Us Family ‘together’ adventures: (projected to be the hardest: 30/50. 

I've kept track of every 'all-fam adventure' on my 'notes' section on my iPhone: 
Playing Dutch blitz. Watched 'Harriet.' YMCA workout. Breeding Charley x3. Coronavirus Brainstorm sesh. Watched: Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. YMCA workout. 3 LOTR movies on Covid19 first week. Tennis all together x3. Watched all episodes of Parks n Rec. Making a whelping box for Charley. An RV trip for Spring Break. Milton Freewater 'Polaris rides' seeing Elk. Kings Corner card games. Birthing the 11 Puppy together. Watching the Twilight series. The Hobbit series. Jogged around our neighborhood all together. Weighing, feeding, developing, and matching the puppies to new owners. Tiger King x2 & Brooklyn99 x2. Kings corner more. Making waffles, calzones and steak on Parks & Rec reunion day. Going to Manito Park on mother's day.

Blessings to you as you experience the highs, lows and have grace with yourself in 2020 goals. Its a good time to make mid-year corrections, or to add goals you thought were 'gimmes.' Tanya and I are re-adding a goal of doing a weekly 'check in' that we realized we lost when gyms shut down.

Comment with any of your top/bottom or goal check ins.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Some Clarity For God's Sake!

Is 'Clarity Deficiency Syndrome' a Thing?

Anyone finding themselves deficient in clarity? Side effects may include constantly checking the news and social media, unpredictably snapping at people in your home, thinking about praying but being too overwhelmed and lacking faith of the point of even doing it and uncommon lethargy.

Disclarity in which phase our states and country are in. Disclarity in when we can get our haircut and share a meal with friends. Disclarity of when and if our Young Life leaders can take kids to camp or on a trip, and if so, how many in a group can come. And...when can businesses open and people get back to work? 'Clarity Deficiency Syndrome' is a THING.

For those uncomfortably buried beneath layers of disclarity, consider how Mother Teresa handles it.

A brilliant minded Jesuit professor and author, Fr. John F. Kavanaugh traveled across the globe to stay 3 months at Mother Teresa's “the house of the dying” in Calcutta, he was seeking a clear answer as to how best to spend the rest of his life. In epic fashion, he met Mother Teresa. She asked bluntly, “And what can I do for you?” Kavanaugh asked her to pray for him.
“What do you want me to pray for?” she asked.  He voiced the request that he had traveled thousands of miles to ask: “Pray that I have clarity.”
She said firmly, “No, I will not do that." (insert record player scratch sound and cue the awkward turtle.)
When he asked her why, she said,  “Clarity is the last thing you are clinging to and must let go of."

Kavanaugh commented that she always seemed to have the clarity he longed for, she laughed and said, “I have never had clarity; what I have always had is trust.  So I will pray that you trust God."
'Trust' is not often what we WANT to hear when its clarity we seek. Yet it is an essential 'big story' theme with God. Jesus masterfully personified this life. Paul, Peter and John highlighted the life of trust and faith in every Epistle. Trusting God requires that we walk by faith, not by sight. The beautiful, unshakable remedy to clarity deficiency is trust. Good 'ol Vitamin T. The value of trusting amidst the trials and suffering, which James and Peter open their Epistles with, is worth the process because of who we become and how our souls deepen.

We can hardly wait for clarity. Will you deeper your trust in the meantime? That is the bottom line.
(Quote from Ruthless Trust, by Brennan Manning, 2000 that Billy Tormey introduced me to.)

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Huber Personal Top 10 for 2019


Top 10 for the Hubers in 2019

10. Janna entered marching band at Mead HS with a knee scooter for her broken foot from an accident while square dancing at Malibu. We weren't how it was going to worjk out. She learned extremely complicated choreography and clarinet parts quickly, her band made top 3 at multiple contests and at the end of the season, she was voted most inspirational!

9. Dietrich and a pack of friends going to North Spokane Wyldlife with Jeff as a leader, and Tanya leading Mead YL with Janna and a growing crew of sophomore girls. This has assuredly been a highlight and has promise to continue so for 2020, including both going to summer camp.

8. Spring Break: We surprised the kids with a day at Universal Studios, we enjoyed SoCal and our annual mecca in Rosarito Beach and we snapped ample pics in the Tulip fields of LaConner.

7. Dietrich’s times with friends: His bday: Virtual reality, trampoline jumping, playing Risk, watching Avengers End Game and hatchet throwing with friends felt like big wins for Dietrich. Seeing him come alive with friends is a win we do not take for granted!a

6. Our two family weeks in the summer at Suncadia (Roslyn) and Black Butte with friends. Times with other friends with kids' friends tends to be among the sweetest times for them and us. When kids all hang out, the adult's enjoyment skyrockets too. During these weeks, big prayers were prayed, many books were read, miles of running and biking were logged and big topics were journaled.

5. Finding something all four of us enjoy doing together is elusive. Jeff and Tanya's collaborative goal was to have 30 family adventures were we all doing the same activity.

4. Sushi together! Who would have thought we would come to Spokane to begin to appreciate sushi? Eating sushi has become one of the activities all four of us enjoy and nerd out with. Seems hardly fitting that sushi would have emerged as the #1 'adventurous' activity, but that is how we 'roll' I guess!

3. Serving at Malibu. Tanya slayed it as camp director. Janna and Dietrich enjoyed an incredible group of teenage kids who were with us for the month too. Jeff lavished being spouse/Tanyas support and focusing on relationships and sweet times with God.

2. It was our most connected year as a couple this year. We started off in Kauai and set goals together for the year. Some we nailed, like to work out every Monday morn and do a 'check in' during it. Some not so much, like going on 25 evening dates (fell short,) stand up paddle board 15 times (only 8.) But adding to the weekly rhythms we've been forming helped and will be built upon even more for 2020.

1. The 100th Apple Blossom, where Tanya was celebrated as a past royalty, waving in the parade from the convertible and fun social engagements with dear friends and families. I never dreamed I would be someone's arm candy...but Tanya was the celebrity so I did my best supporting role I could do while she shined.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Jeffs Young Life Regional Top Ten of 2019

This is my top ten list of Young Life highlights that hang with my soul months later as I reflect back on a year of God's faithfulness. If you want my bottom ten, it'll cost you a beer, but I'll fess up!

10. Brewster and Bill! Our regional YL staff teammate, Bill Dooley, has been consistently meeting, praying with and supporting the efforts of a group of adults in Brewster, WA on the Columbia River. The past few months, after lots of meeting but little dynamic stirring, the adults started pulling kids together and something big is sparking that is leading to Young Life starting there, and a committee chair came forward, an essential part to ensure hundreds of kids here will be known, prayed for and introduced to Jesus.

9. "No way Jose'" kids. Tanya and other leaders and I used to have a 3 columned list of kids we prayed to come to camp. The 3 columns were: Surely Shirley. Maybe Baby and No Way Jose'.  YL is positioned to encourage the latter two columns of kids to come. Two no way Jose' kids came to Malibu with TJ from Leavenworth HS. Both proclaimed they were 'Athiest' and pushed back on everything at camp from club, to cabin time to quiet times. Yet by the end of the week, it was a combination of those three, along with the way their leader, TJ, reflected the love of Jesus, they both stood up at Say-So starting a new relationship with God!

8. Power Women! This year, strong women were given opportunities to step up and they thrived. Two of our staff, CJ and Tanya, served as month-long camp directors for WFR and Malibu. Both slayed it. Three of our largest financial gifts (10K) were written by women. Our new regional admin, Amber Bonetti, is a butt-kicker, as is YoungLives coordinator Cassie Coats, fiercely creating new possibilities for YLVS coordinators across the region. New hires, Stephanie Bugas, (Walla Walla) Kate McGinnis (Missoula) and Tanita Maddox (ARD) top the list of new-to-us-power-women. Many committee chairs making the biggest waves are dynamic women. The list goes on...and women rose strong in 2019!

7. Muslim family, alive in Christ. I cannot say their names, for safety, but a family of kids in Spokane both experienced the power and deep love of God this summer. One met Christ 2 summers ago at Malibu and prayed her little brother would later come and experience the same. He did, and now both know Jesus and their lives will never be the same (see an earlier blog entry for more.)

6. "I'm still standing." Been a tough year, but staff are still standing! This year a few staff whom I love had tough sledding. Financially, emotionally, feeling alone, etc. Three are dear to me. For me to be in leadership and see them struggle and suffer on a heart level, I ached with them. As the year has progressed, seeing God's people rise up alongside them and to see the Spirit carry them is a highlight. Although if I had a magic wand, I would gladly do away with the pain.

5. Hey Jeffrey! Our staff person, Jeffrey Chambers, who's past life has been filled with pain and poverty, has thrived while serving in Tri-Cities area, alongside Steve Vollmer. This summer he was asked to speak at WFR-Creekside. He had typical first week jitters, yet the last two weeks he served wonderfully and will speak again this summer. ALSO, he applied to be the next lead area director for Tri_Cities, after years of believing he's only a second-in-change kind of guy, he was just chosen to be hired as the #1 guy. His tears of joy!

4. Year of the matching gift.  I haven't participated in a 'matching gift' campaign for a few years. But this year...took the all-time cake, for me.  We reached a 45K campaign in September.  And at our 'Art and Wine' Auction in April, we had a 10K match. Both put us in reach of hiring an associate regional director for the Inland NW region. Big time response by our supporters; impact ahead! AND...we were JUST offered ANOTHER 25K match for this year end, by December 31st.

3. Our regional vision has been for our leaders to build relationships with 35,000 kids a year.  The highest we got to was 27,500 and we have stalled.  In October, Inland NW region merged with Montana/North Wyoming and wouldn't you know it...their leaders' total relationships with kids joined with ours and we subsequently reached our 35,000 'kids known by name and prayed for' goal! Time for a NEW GOAL for 2020-2025.

2. YoungLives. Last Sept I shared that it was my worst month ever on YL staff. YLVS in Spokane came unraveled and I stepped in to make tough calls. Since then it has been pulled together. Its in a drastically new season of flourishing. Building upon legendary work of Shauna, Linda and co had established, YLVS has truly begun reaching new heights through the leadership of Melissa, Niki (and Cassie) in partnership with their supportive areas. '19 saw incredible impact in the lives of teen moms across Spokane.
1. Our region hired two Associate Regional Directors: Tanita Maddox and Jim Stuck. After almost two years of deliberating, we made the decision as a board, inspired by those who gave generously. This new direction is God’s way of answering our prayer for growing deeper in faith, reaching more kids and experiencing greater health among our staff. So...giddy up, 2020+!

Part B to #1 is the addition of Senior Associate RD, Keith Dow. He leads Montana/N Wyoming areas and is already among my most synergistic teammates I have ever served alongside. He is wildly gifted and will bring tremendous blessing to the whole Mountain West Region and to me.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Montana/N Wyoming is Joining the Inland NW Region

As I begin the fifth year of being regional director here in the Inland NW (Central & Eastern WA and North Idaho,) we have been asked by Young Life to combine with the Montana/N Wyoming Region. We are one new region together. The wisdom is to leverage the resources, strengths, expertises and slim down leadership to be simpler, more focused and not need two regions to fund and lead, but one that is better together.

If you know me, you know i am a sucker for a good brainstorm. Actually, if you know me, you know that I never leave brainstorming mode. Those gifted with 'critical thinking' skills know to slap me and splash my face with cold water to clarify that we are NO longer brainstorming. With that in mind, here are some brainstormed ideas! 

Gold Rush Region
Mountain West Region
"Washington Family Region"  
Big Sky Northwest
Lewis & Clark Trail Region
Deeper Wider Longer 
Greater NW Big Sky
Basalt and Light 
The Great Northwest 
Triple Threat (this used to be 3 regions...obviously this is a joke)
Northern Skies
Greater Northwest Skies
Greater Northwest Big Sky
Inland Big Sky
Big Ass Region
The Glacier and its Carnage
'Gods Country'
Blue Sky Region
Wild West region
Wild Wild Country! (see Netflix special series) 
Brewster to Billings
Cascades to Dakota
Cougars, Bulldogs, Bobcats and Grizzlies, Oh My!
1/4 of America region
'We ain't City Slickers'
Endless Region
14 Hour Drive Region
Inland NW Big Yellowsky Panhandlers
Rivers Mountains and Lakes for DAYS Region
'No Traffic' Region
Inland NW Big Sky

Any more?

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

"Are You Kidding Me, God?"!

These are the last and arguably most wow-like God stories to share. Thank you for your prayers and leaning in with us as we served at Malibu (Tanya, as 1st time camp director)

A tough Latino girl was here this week at Malibu...she lived in Texas with her siblings and mom, but her dad was imprisoned. Had to move around a lot because her mom worked for a Mexican drug lord, El Chapo. They ended up moving to Mexico. There, one day, she and her siblings were playing and she pushed one of her brothers off the bed. The fall took a tragic turn, resulting his death from the injury. Her mom was so angry, she exclaimed she would never talk to her again. The next day her mother was arrested (unrelated cause) and the kids were sent to an orphanage in Guadalajara. 

Later on, she was adopted by a family in Woodinville. She got into trouble and the adoptive family dissolved the adoption (this part of the story made her cry as she shared it with me.)
So, a dear family in Woodinville took her in and offered to send her to Malibu. She made it clear to all that she didn't believe in God but would go. She thought, 'I have such a crappy life, how could there be a God?' In her orphanage, she was force-fed religion and resented all of it.

After I (Tanya) shared my story during 'Real Life' she connected with me, relating to part 1 and 2 of my life story about my absentee Mexican dad, growing up in Wenatchee in poverty/welfare and being turned off by the supposed 'wonderful plan' God had for my crappy life. 

Another breakthrough for her was a great convo with her leader, who explained how we all (including her parents) have free choice; that God doesn’t just ‘do stuff TO’ us. For the first time, she could see that God is for her. Her leader asked, "Do you believe in God, Jesus and his love for you?" She answered, "yes." When she realized that it was the religion she had rejected all along, and that she could start a relationship with God now, she described that her 'throat relaxed', and it was the first time she ever felt she could 'really, actually breathe.' On the last night, she stood up at say-so and committed her life to God, saying on the mic "I am now a part of GOD'S family." 414 campers heard and cheer, but had no idea the depth behind her story. Wow, God, are you kidding me?!

Another 'WOW'!
A young man from Gonzaga prep also really resonated with my story.  He has felt alone for so long, as he is adopted from Asia, and has carried unanswered questions about his value as a person in this life.  While on the ropes course, he told me he appreciated my story. I remembered him during Q&A from the crowd. When the host, Scott, asked the crowd what they thought I was chasing after instead of God to fill me life, he shouted out the word, 'confirmation.' I had never thought of my own pursuit of wanting to feel confirmed/affirmed, but it felt true.

Leavenworth boys
Then, after the third 'Real Life' session and cardboard testimonies, through tears, he and his leader, Stewart, prayed and he accepted Christ into his life. At say so, he said, "this week I joined God's family and now I am no longer alone." He was at the new believers experience and told me his story.  What an articulate and appreciative young man.  I have a feeling this young man will do great things for the kingdom of God.  He is smart as a whip and his face is BEAMING with the love of God in his life. 

Feast of the UnLeavenworth
Two boys from Leavenworth were resistant to God all week. They were hung up on how much ‘religion’ has done to divide and hurt our world. As the gospel became more clear, as their cabin times with TJ brought more understanding, and quiet times allowed Jesus to speak to them, they both took the mic at Say So to say they decided to follow Jesus (relationship, not religion.) 

                                                                                            A Final, Mind-blowing WOW!
A work crew girl here, whom we shared about 4 posts ago, from a muslim family, took great courage to be involved with YL in Spokane and follow Jesus. Her home town came up this last week, North Central HS, which one of the campers was her little brother, Ali. She has been praying for him ever since she became a Christian. He loved camp and the messages, and made a special bond with the camp doctor. He sat beside him during songs and the message. Scott, our speaker, shared John 10:10. Ali asked Dr. Deon for a pen, then wrote John 10:10 on his arm, exclaiming that he really liked it.  Then, later that night Ali stood up at say-so and proclaimed that he is now a part of Jesus' family.  His sister was there to witness it. We are delighted that Ali and his sister can continue their relationships with Jesus at home-- together.  It will take great courage for them to continue to grow. Unlike so many of us, they are risking everything to follow Jesus. They have a great support team in their YL family, Jenna and Kolby, were on our assignment team, as well as Gio, the cabin leader who brought Ali to camp.

Please continue to hold these kids and all the kids who encountered Jesus up in prayer and join me in giving glory to God!

Do want a little more details?  Let us know, email or text Jeff.

-Jeff and Tanya-

Monday, August 5, 2019

On the 3rd Day, Freeman kids and Guac O Clock

A seven day YL camp like Malibu is designed to allow kids a chance to process the gospel with enough information to be able to say 'I'm in' or 'No thanks' (not yet) by day 6. 3 we had our first two kids here say 'yes' to start a relationship with God. Both Spokane girls heard our speaker share how we fill our lives with and chase things other than God, hoping they will fulfill us in a way only God designed for us to experience. One sobbed through the entire cabin time, and when called upon, she expressed this was what she had been trying to figure out for years and is ready. The other was more matter of fact, articulating to her leader that she had always had been close but never knew how to actually start living into a relationship with God. Jesus’ invitation to do life fully with God and not live all for oneself is really good news to teenagers.

Kids from Freeman HS are pictured here, dressed like M&Ms. Freeman is where the school shooting took place a year and a half ago, many of these girls were in the hallway in view of the horrific event. They are encountering Jesus amidst all the trauma they’ve been through. Thankful for Makinzie, Mary and Ernie who teamed up to make sure these kids can be kids, find Jesus amidst their trauma and rediscover hope and future. Praying the same for young people in El Paso, Dayton and Gilroy who also endured a mass shooting. Jesus draw near to those who've seen the worst.

Ever heard of "Guac O'clock?" It is ANYTIME guacamole is served. As part of Tanya’s Latina roots,  is the passio for making guacamole for guests, alongside Janna. Bringing the assignment team together with guac is a way that Tanya, as camp director, has aimed to serve with excellence. Here’s a time lapse of guac o’clock:

The next two days, kids will hear how Jesus gave his life that we could fully live knowing we are loved and having no barrier between us and God, and that he is alive and well. Kids get two 15 minute time of quiet to sit, listen, pray and consider Gods offer to them. Pray!

In fact, after I posted this, during the 15 min time, this scene of Spokane kids from Rogers and North Central kids who climbed up on the rooftop of the Totem Inn. Reminds me of the gospel story of the four friends taking their paralytic friend up on the roof to try to get get them in up close and in front of Jesus. Success. And side note, the mountains in the background is a spot where I first heard God speak to me when I was on a Beyond Malibu hiking trip. Word of God speak!

An update from previous prayer director Tanya's and musician Maddie's voices are much better, and they are gaining strength by the day. Janna's broken foot is a bummer but her resilient spirit is keeping her trucking along and fully engaging with campers and the team here.