One of my favorite times in youth ministry is the van ride to/from a retreat. The stuff is piled in the van – sleeping bags under the seats, luggage strategically packed like a game of Tetris. The music is on and folks are chatting and connecting. Usually, a song comes on that we all know, and we all start singing along! This is truly where I see God – this packed van of youth – a mix of energies, experiences, ages, anxieties, worries, hopes, dreams. And yet, here they all are. They’ve chosen to take a weekend out of their very packed schedules to go on a retreat to explore their faith!
January 10–12 we had 14 youth and 4 leaders head out on our High School Winter Retreat. We explored the theme “Another Way Home” – Through discussions and other activities we invited youth to find and claim their ‘faith home’. As life changes, and they grow, faith will shift and change, but what is the constant they can hold on to? Maybe it’s “God is love”, or “You are beloved” or “God is Mystery”? I thought I’d share with you, the congregation, some of the questions we gave them to reflect on to get to this “faith home”. You might be interested to reflect on this a bit:
What do you trust? What do you know? What do you hold on to?
Our high school youth explored this and made some beautiful collages depicting their faith center/home. So, I invite you, the congregation, to think about this… As you begin this new year, 2020, how might you hold on to your faith home? And how might you live this faith out into the world?
P.S. Special thank you to Pastor Todd Smiedendorf, Mike Zevenbergen and Cat Gipe Stewart for helping plan and lead the retreat!