When you take things for granted, you don't realize how much you appreciate certain events. High school retreat is definitely one of those events.
Pastor Nolan shares with us just how much-needed this retreat was for our students, and, although the weather forecast was undesirable, the Lord continued to work in new and breathtaking ways.
Retreat has always been a great time to lay school work aside, spend time with peers, and hear from the Lord. Thanks to the retreat center that hosted us, we were able to get away for a day with students and do those very things.
Although shortened in time, the retreat was a powerful punch of goodness during a tough season for our school family. We needed the time to laugh, play, and leave our worries at the campground's entrance gate. Thankfully the rain washed them away before we left, so we didn't have to pick them back up!
Rain, yes you caught that, it rained! I was so worried about the rain as the days of retreat got closer. The weather forecast called for a steady rain. And the temperature, not at all like years past, was to be chilly in the mid 60s.
Once all the high school students were checked in and dismissed to their first activity block, the rain started a little harder. "Oh no! Please hold off!" was all I could think as I walked up the hill, worried that our students would be bummed from the very beginning. But instead, what I was about to see would reset my attitude for the rest of the day: two young ladies, with huge smiles and not a care in the world, dancing in the rain! I suddenly realized that everything would be just fine and to stop worrying about the things I couldn't control.
Students had a blast, even though they couldn't play in the cold, dreary lake. The parent volunteers were amazing. They gave our teachers an amazing gift, and we are so thankful for each one of them. Between rock climbing, the high ropes course, the giant swing, archery, basketball, crafts, and the SNACK TRUCK, it was a great day. Thank you, Lord.
Our speaker, Jason McLeod, spoke a message from Luke 5:1-11 titled "Fresh Surrender." A point that stuck out to me so profoundly was how Jesus asked Peter to use his boat. He asked Peter to push the boat off a short distance so He could speak to the crowds.
Just as Jesus wanted to use Peter's boat, He wants to use our vessel, too. Jesus can use each of us, in full surrender, to speak His gospel message to the crowds.
Jason encouraged all of us to surrender the things that hold us back from being used by Jesus. What a perfect message for a generation that is occupied with so many things. I pray that we all surrender so our boats can be used.
Thank you, Lord, for a day of fun. Thank you for taking care of us when we need it. Thank you for our school family who supports one another, appreciates one another, and cares for one another. Thank you Lord for your message through your servants, and may it bring change in the lives of those who listen. And, from what I heard from many students on the day of the retreat, "Thank You Lord For The Snack Truck!" ~Pastor Nolan