For the next two weeks beginning this Sunday, I will be hanging out with our youth. The first week I will be attending the Montreat Youth Conference with our senior highs. The next week I will be going to The Great Escape with our middle-schoolers. I am really looking forward to spending time with our JCPC youth. At last count we had 27 going to Montreat and 17 to The Great Escape.
It has been a few years since I went to the Montreat Youth Conference, but I have been there many times. I actually began my ministry as an Associate Pastor for youth. The youth group at my first church did not yet go to Montreat, so I started the tradition with two youth attending. By the time I left five years later, we had almost 30 youth going and it was the highlight of the year.
Over the years the Montreat Youth Conference has been the best thing our Presbyterian church does. Montreat is a beautiful town in the mountains of North Carolina. For that week, the town becomes a great place to be if you are a teenager. The speakers are outstanding and the fellowship is amazing. This year Rodger Nishioka, who has spoken at JCPC, will be the keynote speaker. Rodger is one of my favorite preachers and I can't wait!
The next week I will be heading up to Lee University for The Great Escape. While I have heard about The Great Escape, I have never been there before, so this will be new for me. Linda Benson, our Interim Youth Director, will be there both weeks to help keep things in order, along with a few of our youth advisors.
I want to ask you to start praying daily for our youth now. Pray that God would be at work in their lives so that each one of them can deepen their relationship with Christ. Pray that our speakers would know how to inspire, motivate, and challenge our youth. Pray for those of us who are in charge, that everything will go relatively smooth. And pray that everyone comes home safe and sound.
Prayer for Today
Gracious God, we pray for each of our youth getting ready to go to Montreat and The Great Escape. May your spirit work in their lives so that they deepen their relationship with you, enjoy the fellowship with each other, and have a great week of safe fun! We pray this in the strong name of Jesus the Christ. Amen.