Let me just say first that I love Bob Smith and I don't care who knows it. Bob is one of my co-worker's older brothers and he helped me clean my computer of its viruses and saved me $120!! But don't worry, he's in his 70's and very married. You don't need to worry for Kanyon.
Anyway, I mentioned last week that I was going to go on a retreat with the youth group from First Baptist Church (where I work but don't attend church .. not because I don't like it but because we already had a church home before I started working there). I had been really excited about it for as long as its been since Harris (the youth minister) asked me to join in!
I was the oldest girl sponsor along with two freshman in college who just graduated from this youth group. Along with us, there were about 16 or so jr high and high school girls. It was a big group for a new-comer like me to meet! It was a lot of fun, though.
We went up to Floydada to Plains Baptist Assembly camp ground where Harris and his wife actually lived and worked when they first got married. It sits in the middle of a canyon and is very pretty, although not great for cell phone reception when you need to call your long-time best friend on her birthday.. :/ Sorry, Camille.
I won't go into too many details but just wanted to say that I had a really great time. The kids were really challenged in their faith. I mean, really challenged. The staff at Refuge Retreat (the name of the weekend) jumped right in. The speaker was phenomenal, one of the best I've ever heard speak to youth groups. A lot of speakers I have heard, and I've heard a lot being in youth group myself and being a Young Life-er and leader, either try to focus on one aspect of the gospel in an attempt to not bore the youth or they over-complicate it all in an attempt to not miss something. This guy (Leighton Flowers) didn't do either. He presented the gospel in a simple and interest-keeping way, but didn't skip over the hard parts either. He spoke for about 30 minutes each time but I didn't feel over-loaded with information as I am sometimes when a speaker goes that long. The worship band was also so good. Their name is slipping from me right now but I have their CD in the car. They had teaching sessions a couple times each day on different topics, some lecture-style on topics like gossip or prayer, and others more hands-on like prayer stations.
Personally, I was very challenged spiritually myself. I can never hear the gospel too many times and always came away thinking hard about what I heard. One of the session times, though, a few of the high school girls asked if I would lead something for them. So the four of us went and sat outside and just talked about having a relationship with God. It felt so good to be back in ministry talking about God with high school girls.
I've been so anxious to get back into some sort of youth ministry since I left my Young Life girls in Abilene but I've felt God telling me all this time that I needed to wait. Its so exciting to be on the brink of something that could lead to ministering to these girls again. I talked to Harris this weekend about possibly leading the girl's small group on Sunday nights and he's excited about me doing it too. We'll see what happens!
While I was at this retreat, Kanyon got to take a break from harvest to go hunting! Him, his dad, his uncle, and his cousin all met up at their deer lease for the weekend. Zeb even got to go and had a ball running around and "helping" Kanyon :)