I don't even know how to start this post. You know when you feel like you've been experiencing something that just really can't be explained? Like putting words to it almost seems to cheapen it all? That's how I feel...maybe I should just end the post here.
....I don't know. God is just way too much for me sometimes. Like He's so big...I'm so small. He's so mighty...I'm so weak. One of my favorite worship songs ever:
The ONE TRUE GOD.
Strong, yet beautiful.
Just, yet merciful.
Never changing but still mysterious.
The infinite yet intimate GOD.
He is all things good. All things perfect. Just when I think I've seen it all, He comes in and blows me away again. Just when I think I love Him and I know Him, He comes in and reveals Himself in a whole new amazing way...I don't know. I'm getting frustrated even trying to explain it.
This weekend was crazy. I got to spend two days at the lake with seriously 20 of my favorite people in the whole world. We had our first annual Youth Leadership Retreat and it was so much more than we could've asked or imagined...suffice it to say that these students just inspire me. They make me laugh. They make me cry. They make me proud. They encourage me. They're some of my best friends in the world. As I said to my sister when we got back, " I seriously don't think it's possible for me to love a group of people more than I love them...." They are already being used in incredible ways and I cannot WAIT to see what God is going to do in them and through them this year...and beyond. They're gonna change the world.
I love to hear the dreams they have for this youth group. I love to see the way they love each other. I love to hear their desires to be nearer to God, to know Him more. I love that in them, I see pictures of Jesus with skin on.
...I love making a 30-minute drive with all of them to the nearest Walmart at 1:00 AM just because we're all craving ice cream. I love the fact that I'm going to get to spend eternity with them. They make my heart full.
It was just an awesome two days. A few more pics...
So we get back from the lake about an hour and a half before youth group is supposed to start. And by this time, I didn't know if I had anything left in me. I was SPENT - emotionally, spiritually, mentally...and definitely physically. But how easy it is to forget that God says He's going to be strong when we're weak. He just decides to go and blow us away after we thought we'd experienced it all for the weekend!
There was an insane energy around youth group....from everyone! From the leaders all the way to the visitors...you could feel the Spirit! And there's something crazy about that feeling... students who have been far from God are being drawn to Him. There is NOTHING that gets me more pumped than that. Wait, yes there is: seeing a combination of students who are from God being drawn to Him AND students who know God getting excited about seeing the other students who are being drawn to Him! dang...that's amazing. And that's what we witnessed last night. What could possibly still be to come?!?!
4 (maybe 5...) students are giving their life to Jesus and getting baptized on Sunday. It's going to be a party.