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Tel Hai September 2018
News for 09.18.18
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This past weekend, 15 students in grades 6-12 traveled with Youth Leaders and Youth Associate Barry Harvey last weekend to the annual Tel Hai Fall Retreat to launch the school year. The theme of the retreat was “Reconnecting with Jesus” (or connect with Him for the first time). As expected, fun and games, and enjoying God’s awesome creation, were sprinkled in between.

God put it on Barry’s heart to share and analyze the Gospel of Mark with the youth and share his story of coming to faith 5 years ago. With tremendous help from the youth leaders (Rebecca Pennock, Brandi Henry, Kyle Bohn, Luke Megonigal, Nick Sheridan and John Deaton) the students discovered who they are, why they are here and what life is all about.

Through God's miracle story in Barry’s life and the countless miracles illustrated in the Gospel, God's Word revels to us that we are all sinners who need to be reunited with God (i.e. become His children again) via "The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world". Within our small groups, the leaders did a fantastic job sharing their stories and asking probing questions to help the youth gain understanding to some of their sinful thoughts (ex. impatience, hurtful thoughts/actions to family and friends) and what they should do instead.

Saturday evening, the group looked at the seriousness of God's plan for salvation, and for us, and the suffering, like no one has ever suffered before, that Jesus had to go through for us to gain access to the Father. Barry shared the story of his mother's battle with cancer and how the Lord alleviated all the fears, and selfishness, he had during that time; to reveal to him that she is well taken care of. The leaders highlighted that our biggest Calling in life, (i.e. why we are here) is to be Called to the Lord, and to "go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation" (Mark 16:15). This led us into an opportunity to cry out to the Lord, maybe for the first time, and let the Holy Spirit dwell within us.

Sunday morning was an opportunity for the group to begin to look towards the future and see what we are to do now (i.e. what is life all about), and it was pretty simply. How simple God's instructions are, yet so hard to keep: To "love the Lord our God with all are hearts and with all our soul and with all our minds and with all our strength... (and to) love our neighbors as ourselves." (Mark 12:30-31). Throughout the weekend, the group talked about ways they could do that (i.e. loving our siblings more, talking to classmates that we wouldn't normally talk to), and heard prayers for wisdom, patience and guidance.

Using this new knowledge, please pray that the students are called to the Lord and filled with the Holy Spirit to do God's work of spreading the Gospel; as well as, glorifying the Lord and loving their neighbors as themselves.