How weird that I was back in the Midwest this weekend… at the same exact camp!

This time I was speaking to High School students. My friend Jeff Dart is the pastor leading a great ministry at Brookside Church in Omaha, NE called Oasis. It’s an awesome ministry and I was fired up to be part of it.

As Jeff & I talked leading up to the retreat, I felt led to rework some of the talks from the series we just finished at Journey on Worship. I actually knew as I was originally working on some of the talks, “this is going to be for the kids at Oasis”. That was especially true of the “I LOVE ME MY IDOS” talk. That kind of took over the retreat.

All the talks seemed to connect. But, there some fun points where in the midst of the talks God gave me specific words. How this works for me is that while I’m speaking I get this knowledge that’s pretty near certainty that a specific application of a truth is being revealed to someone (usually it’s something the Spirit is doing in several people) in the room. There were a couple of these during the Idol talk, which I did Saturday morning & then finished it that night.

I did a Q & A Saturday afternoon, which was really fun.

SAT NIGHT MINISTRY TIME – but the “raison d’être” of these retreats is encounter with God and that seems to happen on Saturday nights. The worship band was anointed & ON IT.
Here’s what I wrote to our Pastoral Prayer Team People about it:
– At least 8 of the 100 kids there came to a saving relationship with Christ
– I did the Idols talk that you heard 2 weeks ago at Journey. The Holy Spirit really moved. God was pointing out idols that needed to be laid down & turned from.
– It was cool to see God stir & revive the hearts of the kids there.

It was an amazing time of very sweet repentance & brokenness. I love it when kids who have been in Church for their whole lives all of the sudden GET IT! God shows them a little bit of how attractive and worth it He is.

They have an amazing group of ADULT VOLUNTEERS who are working with the students. I loved hearing about what was going on in the small groups after each talk. The leaders talked with such passion about what God was doing in the lives of “their kids”. Many of them were young couples with preschool age kids. They had to get someone to take the kids. They’ll come home Sunday night sleep deprived and sore from the games to kids and jobs that will be waiting for them. Yet they were joyfully giving themselves away. I absolutely love, love LOVE this picture of the kingdom of God.

PARENT DEBRIEF – O.k. I’ve lead a zillion retreats as a youth pastor, I’ve spoken at a million others, and I never thought of doing this: A parent debrief an hour before the kids get back. So, I did a little ditty parents and your kid’s significant spiritual moments. It was cool. Jeff is a genius.

It was a powerful weekend & I am powerfully tired as I fly home. Here’s what I wrote in my journal about 30 minutes ago:
I’m very tired, like gut tired, mental leading to physical kind of tired. But I’m also so thankful that You came through again, that You landed on that place… God, I know me. You know me. We both know HOW MUCH MERCY is involved here. Thanks that I am saved, sustained & blessed through Jesus Christ and HIS righteousness. It’s so fun to be a tiny part of what You are doing.

I do miss Journey. I can’t wait for this weekend.