Youth Winter Fest 2015 was absolutely incredible! It was awesome having 16 churches together in one place to meet with God and grow in our relationships. Best of all, we have heard stories of dozens of students who made decisions to make Jesus the leader of their lives, and that is what it is all about! Our theme this year was Honor, and our speaker Lamont O’Neil challenged us to be men and women who honor God in all we say and do. We had a great time of worship with Mitch Parks, Daniel Bashta, and the Fellows. We also experienced a powerful time of ministry by the Nubian Gents and Feminine Fire – the ministry Lamont O’Neil started 20 years ago to mentor and disciple students. Many reports have been coming in about the impact our morning seminars had on them. The three seminars were on Honoring God in our media habits, Honoring God through music, and Honoring God in our relationships. The prayer room was also a major hit with students. And, of course, we had tons of fun on Saturday playing football, table games, hanging out in the snack shop and playing volleyball, basketball, and dodgeball tournaments. Everyone’s already asking about next year. Here’s the recap video. Enjoy! #YWF15
This coming weekend we are taking our students away for the weekend for Youth Winter Fest – a weekend retreat where over 400 students from churches all over our area will gather together for an encounter with God, and to deepen relationships. I believe there is tremendous power is disconnecting from the everyday, ordinary to connect with God and others in an extraordinary way. A little over a year ago I shared 5 different types of retreats that I find are very significant and meaningful. Here they are:
In an effort to express our faith in and dependance on God, to be more intentional about praying specifically for one another, and to grow in encouragement this year, I came up with the idea to create Prayer and Encouragement Journals for each member of our family. The idea is simple. Whenever we feel led to pray for or share an encouraging word with one another, in addition to expressing our care verbally, each person is invited to write their prayer or word of encouragement in the journal of the person they are thinking about and praying for. My hope is that these books will be a way for us deepen our heart-to-heart connections, and that as we read them, the journals will serve as a resource to uplift, inspire, and infuse us with hope. Maybe you’d like to do something similar in your home this year.