so I just came back from one of my most amazing weeks of being in youth ministry (for almost 6 years). You see, it was my first time leading students in a mission trip, and can I just say I was BEYOND amazed at the transformation that took place in each one of their spiritual lives. I had students that were so touched, so changed, and so in love with the forgiveness that Jesus brings to each of us.
Something Sharon (my “boss”- she hates when I call her that), any way, something that Sharon and I do while on our trips is “cut off” the students from outside things, like secular music. I know that sound so extreme, but it really does have an effect on the students, the positivity of it all, but more so the lesson of how to worship through song. It’s awesome. I have to say, by our last night, the kids were having so much fun praising God, that they were jumping around and screaming “Blessed be the name of the Lord” (by Matt Redman.) no- we didn’t turn them all charasmatic–we are presbyterians, but they were dancing, they were joyful- they were mad for our King!
It was just so cool, so cool, to see Jesus at work and His love being revealed not just to the people my kids were serving, but to themselves as well. and through that, He revealed His love to me too. A-MAZING!
The theme of the week was “reveal.” And with that, the students were challenged to give hope to the poor, release for the captives, sight for the blind, freedom for the oppressed, and the Lord’s favor. It’s from the prophet Isaiah which Jesus read in the synagogue, He said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He has anointed me.”
On the first night, the kids got (well actually they probably got it before then), but they got it. GOD’s SPIRIT is upon THEM to go and reveal His love. But I don’t think they were expecting to have His love and forgiveness revealed to them.
Here’s a picture of where we spent our devotions each night, I love it, you just see our silouettes and this beautiful cross and sunset in the background and this is what I looked at as I spoke to the students each night. A-MAZING!
And each night, as I looked into this beautiful sunset and saw each one looking at me and hearing the lesson, I thought, these are MY kids. Lord, you have anointed me to reveal your love to them. That’s just so amazing to think of, that He chose me to speak to them! (and then I think– I almost gave that all up! and that is a terrifying thought, pay check or joke of a pay check). But it made it all worth it to see 32 transformations.
There is nothing better to me than to look in the tearful eyes of my kids and see the grasp of His forgiveness of their sins. To look at me, with hope and understanding of His sacrifice for them. And these tears, they bring me a beholding of Jesus, and His work in their lives. They bring me hope that this won’t just be another emotional night, but a night that the students would be changed for LIFE to live for Him, in gratitude of what He did for us!
I wish you could have been there. There are just no words to describe it. no words. well maybe one. LOVE. it’s all about love– and that’s all I got for my kids.