Retreat reflections

If you’re wondering what the proper reaction is to the above photo, I’ll clue you in: EPIC WIN.  It’s not a pose – he was flying by on a zip line and managed to high five both girls in the canoe!!!  I’m not saying it’s a recommended or encouraged course of action – but it’s definitely waaaaaay cool.

We had an amazing time at the retreat.  Our theme for the weekend was Sacred Spaces.  In other words worship, with an attitude of communicating that God has actually wired us for true, heart-felt worship all the time, everywhere and that we can make any place a sacred space.  My short definition of worship would be giving God glory and honor – something that can be accomplished through the most mundane of tasks or the most extraordinary.  On the first night I gave a talk focused on the heart behind worship, and giving honor and glory to God outside of church and home.  I spoke about how we can use our schools, workplaces, sports and more as places in which we worship God.

On the second night, Matt O talked about worship inside; having a heart of worship.  Using our quiet times, our homes, our alone time as a time for worship.  He laid out a challenge with the verse where Jesus says He stands at the door and knocks … and we literally had a door at the stage for kids after the talk to come and open to symbolize letting God in.  It was amazing to see the God moment that we had; with the lights dimmed, soft music playing and a time of prayer, teen after teen got up and prayed at the door, opening it.  You could hear people crying all around the room as they connected with God in a powerful way.

On Sunday morning, Chris Z spoke about worship together as Christians, in church, small groups, and more.  Giving that true worship when we gather.  He challenged us with the idea that church and gatherings of Christians should be something we’re excited to go to … not something we do out of obligation.  We closed that time with a worshipful time of communion.

Along with our theme of making any space a sacred space, we had our worship times in multiple places around the camp, with different student leaders planning each time of worship.  It was really exciting to see how each of them brought their own unique flavor and heart to worship!

Meanwhile, on the excitement side of the retreat … wow.  EVERYONE agreed that we had the best activities in years (this was our first time trying out this camp)!  Paintball, zip line, climbing wall, low ropes course, the Summit inflatable on the water, the Blob, water tubing, canoeing, swimming pool, ultimate frisbee, and more!  None of us had enough time to do everything we wanted to do – which is awesome because every good camp should leave kids wanting more!

All in all, it was an amazing way to kick off the new school year, reconnect with kids who have been gone for the summer, and explore what God’s word has to say about worship!

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