Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Retreat Lessons

Youth Camp is always incredible - especially when you come expecting God to move in a special way for YOU, personally. As usual, the Lord met with us and our faith was encouraged.

Sometimes, as the months pass and the "daily grind" takes it's toll, you forget what God spoke to you in those special moments or how He dealt with your heart. Thus, I'm just writing down a few of the things that spoke to me, or stood out in the services. Thought you might be blessed by it, too. :)

  • "How do you know God loves you? Because He said He does." There are so many arguments about "If God were real...If God cared...If God was so loving...then, Why?!" The above statement is also the perfect answer for Satan's reasons why "You don't deserve God's love anymore." It's true, we don't. But Christ makes us worthy.

  • I was reminded not to be so lackadaisical in my walk with the Lord. We're supposed to be watching the signs of the times and preparing ourselves - zealously waiting with great anticipation. Plan for a thousand years - but don't turn a blind eye to the hour we're living in!

  • It was incredible to me how the ministers who were preaching not only spoke about some things that I had been asking God about, but they were using the exact phrases I had prayed in my quiet, "prayer closet" conversations with the Lord. Who says God isn't mindful?!

  • "He heard you the first time." Sometimes we don't feel anything when we pray; no mighty rushing wind, no ray of light piercing through the darkness, no audible voice - And we feel deflated and worried, like something isn't right and God refuses to listen to us in our time of need. Have faith. If there's no besetting sin to hinder you and your heart is clear, don't think He isn't listening. He heard you the first time.

  • I've always thought it was so sad to see all the girls these days who mope that "I'm never going to get married. Nobody likes me. Nobody could ever want me. There's no guys in my church. Here I am, just graduated high school, and nobody's interested." (Yeah...the syndrome of desperate 18 year olds). I've never quite gathered the courage to write a post about it, but I've always wished I could tell them: "Hey! We trust God for salvation, for a job, to keep our family members, to make a way for us, and is He not faithful?! There's no way He's incapable of bring the right one, at the right time."

    Yup, you guessed it - that was brought up in the sermons, too. (And I was equally encouraged.)

  • Never, ever give up on the loved ones who have "gone out into the world."  All of our faith was raised a notch (and I'm pretty sure there wasn't a dry eye in the whole sanctuary) when Brother Jonathan got up and testified of how the Lord had brought Him back to the truth. One of Jonathan's friends (and I'm sure, his parents, youth group and church) had refused to give up on him and continually brought his name before the throne of grace. It took three years, but at Winter Youth Retreat 2014, God honored those prayers. If God could do it in his situation, I know God can do it in mine.

    Okay. Before I write a whole book, I had better cut it off. In summary, I was so blessed and encouraged at retreat this year. God's not dead - and He cares about young people and their questions. Never let Satan tell you that your too far gone, too small or too despicable for God. God loves you because He said He does, and there is no repentant heart that God won't cleanse and make whole again.

    God Bless.

No comments: