A Guide to Life at BSSM: 2013 Edition – Part 2

Welcome to Part 2 of ‘A Guide to Life at BSSM: 2013 Edition’.  Let’s recap:

Part 1: Housing, Jobs, Finances, Food

Part 2: Getting Around Town, Things To Do, Keywords & Phrases, Making A Revival Group Map

Getting Around Town

In the housing section we touched on having a plan on how to get to key points in Redding.  Here we’ll look at some of your options in more detail.

Getting Around by Car: Buying a Car

I didn’t buy a car myself, but the DMV website is full of useful information.  You can also go to the DMV in Redding and pick up a brochure on almost any topic.

There are two mechanics I can recommend for getting the car looked at, based on testimonies from other students:

Getting Around by Car: Car Owners

There are pros and cons to having a car.  As I said I did not own one myself in Redding, so I had a friend who did shed some light on the subject:

Having a car requires boundaries: If you’re anything like me, you love to help people out.  Arguably, the number one way you will be able to demonstrate that is by giving rides to those not blessed with a car.

Rides to school, rides home, rides to a party, rides home, rides to the grocery store, rides home again.  Are you getting this?

It may feel good the first or second time you help a brother or sister in Christ out to say, “don’t worry about gas money! I’m happy to help!” But what about the third, fourth, tenth time?

Let’s face it: as much as we would all love to say God will miraculously fill up our gas tanks every time we give someone a ride, it won’t happen (trust me, I actually tried that a time or two).  You have to be brave and let people know you are not a free taxi service, because you’re not!

You are NOT this person.
You are NOT this person.

You need to pay for that gas somehow, and yeah, your friends are probably broke, but chances are so are you.  If you can give them a free ride because you love them, they can open their wallet and hand you a couple bucks for the same reason.

If they literally do not have the money, there are other ways to pay you back (my two favorites: dinner and back rubs).  Chief author’s note: I have also offered to wash and vacuum my benefactor’s car, you have no idea how much appreciation that can bring.

You are not obliged to say “yes”: It’s your vehicle.  If you’re tired, heading in the opposite direction, or too busy to make an extra stop, just say “no.”  Your friend will find another ride, I promise!

Getting Around by Car: Non Car Owners

You will be borrowing or bumming rides, so listen up.

Have a list: Try to keep a shortlist of people whose car you can borrow, one of whom has a truck for moving and such.  See the bottom of this post for more information on making a good one.

Have some cash on hand: Always have a couple bucks in pocket to cover their gas/maintenance.  In Canada, $0.40/km or $0.60/mi is what a company would shell out to an employee, and you like your friends more than their boss does right?  Offering $2 for a grocery run or errands is fair.  If they refuse payment, you tried, though I’ve left money in a person’s car while they weren’t looking before.

Stay close: If you aren’t going to have a car, then get yourself close to where you need to get on foot or by bicycle.  Do not make yourself a burden on your friends by living out-of-the-way.

If you live in the following areas then you should be, most of the time, close enough to someone to bum a ride.  This list isn’t complete, but “close to the Civic and cheap” are the basic criteria for student housing, and where drivers live.

  • Clay Street
  • Hilltop Drive
  • Ridgecrest
  • Browning/Churn Creek
  • Mission De Oro

Be ready: Set times and places for pick up and drop off, and stick to those times.  When your ride wants to leave, either stick with them or tell them you’ll find another way.  Don’t make them search for you, or wait around forever.  Respect your driver!

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Getting Around by Bike (Bicycle)

Since people don’t generally borrow bikes this’ll be shorter.

Terrain:  There are some killer hills in the area but apart from that bikes are a quick, cheap way to get around for short distances.

Bring spare clothes: Unless you bike in the cool, early morning, or are incapable of sweating, have a plan for cleaning yourself up for a day of close quarters with classmates.

It's hot in Redding, don't be smelly at school.
It’s hot in Redding, don’t be smelly at school.

Stay on the pavement: Word of warning, avoid going off trail unless you have very durable tires.  There is a weed grass around town that produces sharp spiny seeds.  In the fall, I met someone with a flat tire almost every week.  So stay in the clear, paved areas unless you have puncture-proof tires.

Keep a pump on hand: Have a bicycle pump with you when you bike.  The seeds end up everywhere, and if you spring a leak, pumping up as a temporary fix is the fastest way to get on with your day.  As a bonus precaution, have a tire repair kit at home to fix the bike at the end of the day.

Offer to pay for damages: If you do borrow a bike/car, and you get a flat, or worse, offer to pay at least half, if not all, of the cost to repair it.

Things To Do

There’s too much awesome where you are right now to ignore it.

“Don’t hide!” ~ Alumni Advice.

Hiking

“Tucked away in Northern California’s Shasta County is the charming town of Redding, which over the years has worked diligently to become one of the premier trail destinations in the West.”  ~ TrailLink on Redding

Redding and the surrounding area is a model for beautiful hiking and biking trails, as well as access to rivers and lakes for swimming.  Most parks have an entry fee, check before leaving.

Sacramento River Trail: This trail has multiple access points along the river, and runs past the Sundial Bridge, outside the Civic, all the way to the Keswick Dam.  In general, the area around the Civic is full of beautiful trails for walking and biking.

Whiskeytown: A short, 15 minute drive from downtown Redding, Whiskeytown is home to a man-made lake (great for swimming or kayaking), and a host of trails.  I recommend Brandy Creek Trail as a starter (I don’t recommend hiking the full distance).

I love a beautiful lake.
I love a beautiful lake.

Lassen National Volcanic Park: This state treasure is roughly 2 hours East of Redding.  See boiling mud and steam geysers, or hike to the summit of the dormant volcano itself!  Note: park access subject to weather and season, check before going.  I recommend the Bumpass Hell Trail, the elevation of 8000 ft (2500 m) gives you a certain breathlessness that is quite exciting.

Lava Beds National Monument:  On the topic of volcanoes, this park features numerous caves, some filled with ice year round!  You have to book in advance.

This is an ice cave, outside it was 85 ºF (29 ºC)
This is an ice cave, inside it was below freezing, outside it was 85 ºF (29 ºC)

Castle Crags: Near Dunsmuir, a moderate hike with amazing views and rocky crags.  Mounting points for rock climbers can be found along the way.

You can climb to those peaks in the back. I'm the guy in white!
You can climb to those peaks in the back. I’m the guy in white!

Henderson Open Space: I’ll be talking more about this place in Part 3, but for now I’ll say that it’s a beautiful example of riparian savannah, and it’s in the heart of Redding.  Great for walks and picnics.  I should point out that this place has had vagrancy issues, so don’t go alone on a prayer walk there.

All Trails.com: An amazing site for finding places to explore and hike.

Restaurants

A great way to spend time with people is eating together.  If you don’t want to do a potluck (where you all bring a dish to someone’s house to share), here are some great places.

restaurant sign

Chipotle Mexican Grill (Chipotle): This place is a delicious food maker for a good price.

In-N-Out Burger: The owners are members of Bethel Church, which gives the place a lively atmosphere.  Besides awesome food, a secret menu, and the fact that you almost always will find Bethel folk to hang with, it’s a great place to work.

Razzlicious: Another fro-yo place, there are at least three in Redding, one in the new downtown.

Spoon Me: A delicious frozen yogurt (fro-yo) place in Redding’s old downtown.

Westside Pizza: Another Bethel-member-owned establishment, this place fast became a Bethel favourite after Friday night service last year.  Why? $1 slices after 10pm on Fridays.

Yaks Cafe and Eatery (Yaks): A popular destination for small group meetings.

Tipping: For all non-Americans out there, you should know that tipping is how many servers get by financially.  Use these rules:

  • 10% – The minimum
  • 15% – Good job.
  • 18% – Great job!
  • 20% or more – Blessings upon you!

Also note that if you don’t order while in a restaurant, you are not blessing them.  You are using the restaurant’s space and atmosphere, and you should pay for it.  Freeloading in restaurants give Bethel students a bad reputation.  Consider leaving some money if you didn’t order anything.  Tip your servers!

Day Trip Destinations

Redding isn’t the end of civilization in northern California, or “Nor-Cal” as some call it.  Here are some great day trip destinations (within 2 hours drive).

Chico: It’s the nearest city, lots of stuff to check out.  The Naked Lounge is well-known for its great coffee, and not nakedness.  There’s also a Sonic Drive-In you can stop at on the way there with tasty milkshakes.

Dunsmuir: Cool little shops, train stuff, antiques, and some hiking, a great historical town for walking around.

Mt. Shasta City: Near the base of Mt. Shasta, and you can skate in January!  I had no idea how much I’d missed skating.  There’s also a ski hill.

Here’s a pretty map for you, including some of the ‘around town’ stuff.  See the bottom for instructions on making your own.

Entertainment

There  a lot to see and do, but what about besides eating and hiking?

Dollar Theatre: There’s a cheap theatre that plays movies about six weeks after they premiere at the main theatre.  The tickets are $0.75 to $2.50 depending on the time and if it’s in 3D.

Love Lounge: Monthly live music/coffeehouse all put on by BSSM students.  They have a Facebook page, which is a good place to look for the month’s “dress theme,” which of your friends will be going.  The location has moved so check the page for details.

Dancing

I’m a dancer, mostly swing, but I’ve done salsa and ballroom in the past.  One day I’ll write a post just for dance, but until then I’ll quote ‘Take The Lead’.

“You see… if she allows me to lead, she’s trusting me.  But more than that, she’s trusting herself. Now, if your 16-year-old daughter is strong and secure and trusts herself, how likely is she to let some idiot knock her up? And if your son… can learn to touch a girl with respect, how will he treat women throughout his life?”

~ Mr. Dulaine, defending his program to his student’s parents

Besides those awesome reasons, it’s fun and social.  Here are three places to get your dance on:

Let’s Dance Redding!: My personal favourite, I worked with these amazing people, you should really give it a shot, September is Salsa month, no partner needed.  Weekly lessons, and you can learn California’s state dance (West Coast Swing)!

A Step Ahead Ballroom: These guys are all about the more formal dances.  You’ll know what to do at the next wedding you go to.  Which you may find to be often.

Ceilidhs (pronounced cay-lees): These are Irish/Scottish (different students argue) festivals with a dance as a centerpiece to the event.  Outside the UK, ceilidh refers to the dance.  If you’re interested in putting one of these awesome things together, leave a comment, and I’ll connect you with some people.  It’s something that can be done for all ages and physical abilities.

Keywords & Phrases

Many of the people, and the speakers, at Bethel and BSSM have a condition I call ‘Professor Syndrome’.  When I was in university, I’d run into professors who used expressions or phrases I had no context for, because they’d been teaching this material for longer than I’d been alive, and they would forget that I didn’t know it all yet.

If you’ve already read all the assigned books for the year, you’ll be fine.  Or you can read some that I came across.  In general, Google can help a lot with this.

“Five-Fold Ministry”   This phrase wasn’t explained until October but they used it like everyone knew.  It refers to the five offices of the church and their order of importance, as described in Ephesians 4:11, and detailed in Danny Silk’s book ‘Culture of Honor’.  Here’s the list with some examples.  This list is not exhaustive, and many of these people fill more than one of the categories.

  • Apostle (Bill Johnson, Heidi Baker, Randy Clarke)
  • Prophet (Kris Vallotton, Stacey Campbell)
  • Evangelist (Chris Overstreet, Kevin Dedmon)
  • Pastor (Danny Silk, Jason Vallotton)
  • Teacher (Dann Farrelly)

“That’s a good word”  Originally meant like saying ‘amen’ as a sign of affirmation over a prophetic word or declaration; it is also used in joking suggestion that the previous statement was a prophetic word, and God’s with him on it

“Pull out the gold”  A call to find the best in people and call it out through exhortation and encouragement.  Think about it, in a gold mine, which is easier, to dig up dirt or pull out gold?  Be a gold miner with people.

“I need a Sozo”  A sozo is a spirit led inner (emotional/psychological/spiritual) healing session, one which you can learn how to do while in Redding.  People will use the term to indicate they’ve been exposed to something ‘yucky’, or been ‘slimed’.

It is also used in a jocular tone to indicate a false trauma.  “I just spent four hours watching 12 preschool kids on sugar by myself; I think I need a Sozo.”

“What’s your Love Language?”  There are five principal love languages, or means by which a person communicates emotionally.  They are listed below, and you can take a quick test to see what your mix is.

  • Words of affirmation: compliments, sincere statements
  • Acts of Service: washing dishes, doing laundry.
  • Receiving gifts: a thank you card, made you cookies, “got this cause I thought of you”
  • Quality time: hanging out, going out for coffee or on a date
  • Physical touch: hugs, cuddling, pat on the back

There is a lot of hugging!  You will get used to it, and you will learn all about various types of hugs; which are deemed appropriate and which ones are not.

~ Alumni Advice

“I’m processing”  This has two important meanings.  The first you see after a meaty, deep, or densely packed talk.  It means something to the extent of, “my spirit got ahold of everything but my mind has yet to catch up.”  In other words, “processing” was getting alone, going through the day’s notes and scriptures, and letting your mind soak in more of the day’s revelation.

The other meaning is means emotional processing.  Maybe they are going through a crisis of identity, or a crisis of faith; confronting deep-rooted issues is a lot of what BSSM first year is about.  If you are close, politely ask if you can help.  If they say no, give them space until they figure it out.

“Truth in tension”  A favourite phrase of Dann Farrelly, a brilliant teacher.  We have all met people who say, “the Bible is full of contradictions.”  There is a reason for this.  To quote “Hermeneutic Guidelines” from your binder:

“The Bible never contradicts itself unless it intends to do so, as this might be the best way for the infinite mind of God to communicate truth to finite humans.  In holding to both sides of the “contradiction” we find more complex truth.  For example, we are told to honour and hate our parents.  The drive to solve or wrestle with this idea leads to understanding.”  ~ BSSM Student Guide

As a side note, you should read that entire section now, as well as “The Bible Jesus Read, Phillip Yancey”.  These are indispensable for keeping the right perspective with the Bible and God moving forward.

“RG” or “RGP”  Revival Group, or Revival Group Pastor

Making A Revival Group Map

Welcome to the bottom, where I promised to help you with making a shortlist of drivers.  Last year my brother’s RG made a map of all the people in his group and where they lived.  I thought it was cool so I did it too.

This is probably the fastest way to figure out who has a car and lives close to you, especially because all the road names aren’t clear yet.  Once I’d done this, it was also way easier to find people to hang with or ask for a ride.

I used Google Maps to do this, here are the steps:

  1. Get this info for each person: address, name, phone number, and if they have a car.  I used a spreadsheet, but whatever works for you.
  2. Open Google Maps and make sure you’re signed into Google (note: you will need a Google Account to do this).
  3. Read this and watch the video.
  4. Use the address to pinpoint the spot to add, use the name for the name, put the number in the description, and change the icon of the point to a car if they can drive.
  5. Ok, now if you are clever with technology, you should have a map.
  6. The last step is sharing it.  In all likelihood, your RG has a Facebook group, which you are a part of.  Read this and watch the video.
  7. I recommend selecting ‘Get short link’ and posting that URL to the Facebook group.

4 thoughts on “A Guide to Life at BSSM: 2013 Edition – Part 2

  1. Westside Pizza has $1 slices every Friday night after10pm (not 11pm). Perfect place to go after Friday night Bethel service. The pizza is very good.

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