From the Pastor's Desk A Very Fun Youth Retreat

A Very Fun Youth Retreat

On Saturday, Central Youth had our first ever one day Youth Retreat! It was a great (and long!) day filled with games, laughter, and conversation. The leaders and I took 9 kids to the American Dream Mall for indoor Snow Tubing and an epic photo scavenger hunt. The students bonded with one another and the leaders got to see their personalities shine. We didn’t only have fun though, we also spent time together in Small Groups, sharing about our lives and asking some pretty tough questions that reflected the talks we had. 

Over the course of the day we talked about feeling lost and having ‘landmarks’ to help guide us back to safety. I spoke about three stories in Scripture that have been my ‘landmarks’ over the years. Stories that I can come back to again and again to feel less alone or to figure out how to get back to God. Before we looked at these stories we broke down three different ways we feel lost: 

  • Relationally: When you don’t know who is a safe person and who’s not 
  • Emotionally: When you feel kind of like you’re in a fog or you are really sad and depressed. 
  • Spiritually: When you feel like God is far away from you.

After developing these definitions we spent time talking through stories where the characters experienced feeling lost – and what steps they took to find their way. For relationally lost, we looked at Mary and Martha in Luke 10 and spoke about how Mary sat and built an intentional relationship with Jesus. We need to have intentional relationships with one another and with God. For emotionally lost, we continued with the characters of Mary and Martha, this time looking at John 11 when they felt emotionally lost at the loss of their brother. We talked about how they both were unabashedly honest with God and how Jesus wept with them. Our pain is not what God had intended for us, so he takes action to bring us new and restored life, as he did with Lazarus. 

On Saturday night, we turned to Matthew 26 and spent time in the Garden of Gethsemane with Jesus and his disciples. Here, we see Jesus experience being relationally and emotionally lost; betrayed and overwhelmed. And then this story leads us to Jesus himself feeling spiritually lost, crying out “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” But in this saddest moment we find a pivotal ‘landmark’ for our faith – because what we have is a reminder that God will never abandon us, will never turn away from us, will never be separated from us because he has only ever turned his face away from Jesus. It grieves him to see us weep. So he conquers death and sadness, and as we move into this Easter season, we can remember that he brings forth new life. 

We then shared in the ultimate ‘landmark’ of our faith – the communion meal, which is done in remembrance of all Christ did for us. This Sunday we invite you to learn more about this meal and remember alongside us that no matter how lost we feel we are offered new life. 

Thank you for supporting and praying for Central Youth!

-Rebecca DeLucia
Next Generation Pastor

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