It started off going to bed at 4 a.m. in the morning. Now that the cat is out of the bag, I stayed up that late because of my foolishness but also because I had to carve a pumpkin for Dean’s Tzobanakis’ engagement. Shout out to him for being a stud and for his lovely fiancé, Kelsey, for saying yes! Dean did have to trade his fattest calf to get her though.
Anyways, I got four hours of sleep, jumped on a plane and headed to Lubbock, Texas that morning; indeed, this was the first time I slept on a plane the whole time successfully.
As I drove into the heart of Lubbock with my newly acquired Nissan Note, I showed up to the Texas Tech BYX tailgate to meet the brothers. Later I was asked my first impression of these guys, and I can honestly say that everyone was really nice. I don’t know if it is the “small town feel” where everyone is normally nice, but I was really thankful for how receptive and genuinely happy guys were to connect with me.
I was a little nervous about going to the football game because the Red Raiders hadn’t really been doing so hot this football season, but the boys pulled out a win against Kansas and the rain had subsided to an off-and-on drizzle for most of the game. The bell ringer didn’t get into ringing the bell as much as I had hoped, but the Masked Rider was cool and Raider Red way less creepy than Pistol Pete.
I slept in a little bit on Sunday and then went to church with the Pledge Captain Bowie Tomlinson. The worship and message were awesome, and I loved seeing a bunch of other BYX brothers at church.
One thing to note: BYX does not replace the church. Yes it has a spiritual foundation to it, but it does not have the spiritual authority and eternal mission that the church takes. If you are a BYX brother and you think going to chapter or cell group enough can substitute for going to church, then you are wrong.
BYX is a place for brothers to come together and grow spiritually, but we are called, as Christians, to be intimately involved in the house of God with our local church body; that means attending, volunteering, serving and getting plugged in. Let’s encourage our fellow BYX brothers (and fellow believers) to get plugged into church and take the extra step to keep each other accountable to that.
I posted up at a coffee shop called J&B, had individual meetings the rest of the day with officers and members, then a fun dinner with the officers, followed by pledge meeting later that night.
Even though pledge meeting ended in the a.m., a few of the officers, APTs and I decided to explore the church that the meeting had been in. Moreover, this church was a lot bigger than I had expected, and creepy at night. There was a lot of hiding, scaring and unexpected girly screams coming from dudes. I am proud to say I was not one of them.
Monday morning consisted of pulling a “Robert Bember,” also known as Mercedes Bembs or Rebember the Titans, posting up at the Sub, one of the campus cafeterias. I talked to a few potential vice presidents, had some laughs, and ate a bomb sausage and egg biscuit. I shared a wonderful pizza lunch with President Nate Hardin, and had more meetings with members and a few pledges.
That night, I attended and spoke at chapter. The Eta Chapter at Texas Tech is a rowdy bunch. You can tell they love each other and love to have fun. Regardless of how rowdy they were, they still respected those who were leading and talking at chapter in front of them – something I’m personally dogmatic about. I enjoyed getting to share my BYX story in front of them and was thankful for how attentive and receptive they were to me also; I was really blessed by it.
Afterwards we went to the popular Little Rascal themed restaurant called Spanky’s. Yes, I got a burger and the famous fried cheese. Yes, I was bloated the rest of the night.
Tuesday morning started a lot earlier than I had planned the day before, but waking up at 5:40 a.m. to have a meeting with a member at 6 a.m., who couldn’t meet any other time, is worth it, especially to a stud named Marcus Henderson. I did cheat a little bit by sleeping in my Nissan Note before my next meeting at 8am, but the rest of the day went chipper, especially with a coffee in my hand and cool bros to meet with.
There were a lot of fruitful conversations had and a healthy lunch at Cane’s to end the trip. My trip out to Lubbock went a lot better than expected, to tell the truth. I look forward to visiting these brothers again and continuing to work alongside them.