Ducktown 4: Resurrection…

Coming into night #4, I was not as nervous as I was before night #1. But that doesn’t mean I was as cool as a cucumber. Definitely not. My palms were sweaty. (For those who know about my self-diagnosed and self-proclaimed disease, SPS was still in full effect.)

“We’ve talked about some really important things over the last few days. Thanks for staying so tuned in. Tonight we’re going to start from where we left off last night. After Jesus died, he was buried. Three days after that, God raised him from the dead. Anytime you hear the word “resurrection” you can now equate that to the time when God raised Jesus from the dead three days after he died and was buried. Jesus suffering and dying on the cross as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins and to restore our relationships with God was one phase. The next phase was God resurrecting him from the dead to give us, all of you and me, eternal life. But it doesn’t stop there! Now I want us to all turn to our Bibles to Revelation 21:3-4.

See guys, Jesus will one day return to earth to finish the task of creating a world where there is no more mourning, crying, and pain. He will come back to make a world with no more evil. Peace, love, and justice will reign. So what does that mean for us today? Well, first off, I think it means that we should live our lives joyously and hopefully, having the faith that Jesus will come back to fix all of the world’s and people’s problems. We should not live in fear because we as believers all need to trust that we will all receive a better future. I also think that in living our lives with joy and hope, we should serve Christ in our daily lives and live to love. Let’s turn to Philippians 2:3-8.

I have to be real for a couple of minutes now. I came into Ducktown a nervous wreck. I knew one person from this group and that was it. I really had no idea what to expect. But I have to say that you all are one of the most welcoming, energetic, high-spirited groups I have ever known or been a part of. I have sincerely loved watching y’all play together, worship together, “blob” each other, and pray together. Over the last four days, I’ve also noticed one particular thing. Y’all love to dance. And that is awesome. I mean, y’all are good singers, but let’s just say that if y’all were on America’s Best Dance Crew, I’d definitely pick y’all. It seems that there are also a few particular songs that take the front seat when it comes to group dances.

I want to propose something to you guys. Now, I hope this isn’t the only thing y’all take away from the Ducktown messages but if it is, then so be it. I think we should…[show slide]…wobble for Christ!
(At this point, I heard gasps of excitement, a few YES’s, chairs rustling, and saw a couple kids stand up real quick.)
Alright y’all what I mean by wobble for Christ is…walk onward, boldly believing in His love everlasting.

I see a couple of parts to this sentence. When I say walk onward, I mean the “doing” part in being in a relationship with God. We should serve Christ, and that could be anywhere from braiding your friend’s hair because you braid better or lending your basketball to a friend because he doesn’t have one to helping volunteer at a food pantry or going on your church’s mission trip to Birmingham, AL. Another example of the “doing” part is loving others, and this goes back to what we talked about two nights ago. Also, we can and should pray. And I want to challenge y’all to walk onward outside of Peachtree Pres. Try and think about if your faith community is just with these people sitting beside you or if it’s just inside the walls of Peachtree Pres.

The second part, boldly believing in His love everlasting, refers to the “faith” part in your relationship with God. When it comes down to it, we also need to have faith. Like, having faith that Jesus will return one day to entirely rule out all sin and evil. Or having faith that God is always with you no matter where you are or what is going on in your life.

So let’s wobble for Christ, y’all. And never ever forget that nothing in life or death, nothing, can separate us from the love of our Heavenly Father. Let’s pray before we close in song.”

That was the fourth and final message given at Camp Ducktown 2012! Let’s just say that I had kids show me what they wrote in their student Bibles: “Wobble for Christ.” I felt like God’s word reached the kids not just last night, but the whole week. It was also evident during the bonfire later that night when the kids had an opportunity to stand up and reflect on their favorite worship moment or where they felt God’s presence, etc. It was unbelievably moving to witness these rising 7th and 8th graders profess their newfound or rekindled relationship with God, or their urge to keep their faith life extend beyond Ducktown. Many kids also reflected on seeing the beauty in God’s creation while being at camp. It was a special moment there by the bonfire.

In reflecting over my experience at Ducktown, I’ve witnessed personal growth in my relationship with God. He showed me that I am capable of sharing the Good News to complete strangers. He’s also showed me the importance in Youth Ministry, and I have the utmost respect particularly for Mary Beth, Josh, Jennifer, the interns, and the volunteers who have so strongly and beautifully influenced those kids’ lives. (Props to everyone involved in Youth Ministry!) Anyway, what a great last four days it has been. I’m so thankful I was given that specific opportunity to grow and to be challenged simultaneously. Thank you to all of you who have been supportive and encouraging as I was walking onward in unfamiliar territory.

Peace! And wobble, y’all!

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