As part of our year-long biblical focus, the day began with a fun and interactive walk through the Old Testament. Students and leaders learned hand motions and themes for all 39 books of the Old Testament to help them remember and visualize what God was doing in every book. Chapels this year will continue building on what they learned at the retreat. After all of their hard work, students had the rest of the day to swim, paddle board, canoe, swing, rock climb, play archery tag, and volleyball, or simply sit and fellowship with classmates.
Meanwhile at Camp Highland in Ellijay, our high school students had the chance to listen to speaker Carlos Fernandez, who presented a challenging message, “Be Real."
They also enjoyed building relationships, worshiping, and participating in outdoor adventures. While the retreat was a time of fun, it was also intentionally set up so that students would have time to grow closer together and closer to Jesus.
One student in particular had a testimony we couldn’t keep to ourselves!
“I thought that retreat this year was going to be just like any other church camp. I never really cared about the spiritual aspects of camp but rather just to have fun. At the previous high school retreat, I saw God working through my friends and colleagues, and it was an amazing and positive experience, but I knew that I was not a Christian.
This year, I came into retreat dealing with a lot of sin in my life. I didn't care about the sermons, worship, and God. I slept or tuned out the sermons, and I sang during worship just to fit in with my friends. All of a sudden, during worship, I was thinking about my life and how empty I felt. I felt an enormous amount of conviction by the Holy Spirit. I saw my life and how broken I was without God. I left the worship and sat down in the back. I decided to truly pray to God, which I haven't done in a long time. I told God I am a sinner and I have abandoned you all my life. I asked God to change and forgive me and accept me into His kingdom. I asked God to soften my hardened heart and allow the Holy Spirit in. That night, my life changed dramatically. It was the most important moment of my life. I accepted Jesus as my savior, and I have a whole new perspective on life. Retreat will always be a special place for me now. Retreat means more to me than just having fun. It's about experiencing salvation and growing closer to God.”
-Graham Wannall (11th)
Each year, students look forward to these retreats because their experiences are so transformational and unique, and 2019 was no exception. Please join us as we pray for these secondary students as they return home with a renewed energy to seek and serve the Lord.