Posted by Billy Knieriem on Wednesday, August 3, 2016
This summer has been AMAZING! We have traveled all over the place-- making memories, building relationships, and growing in our faith! This is just a quick snapshot of our summer!
Mrs Janet Smith opened her home TWICE to us this summer for Poolside Chat! The first one had 31 students, and the second had 25 students! That's ALOT of teenagers to allow to raid your home and enjoy your pool! We cannot begin to thank Mrs Janet enough for hosting our crazy pool parties this year!
This was epic! Even though we had to reschedule it just a little because of that pesky Tropical Storm Collin! We had over 60 POUNDS of powdered paint, and 7 gallons of liquid paint to use for our slip-n-slide, elephant tag, sharks and minnows, dodgeball, and all out color fight! No one left dry OR uncolored! IT. WAS. AWESOME! If you are in High School, mark your calendar for November 10th- we will be hosting another Color night, JUST FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS!
Ok, so you didn't exactly drive in to this, but we had our first ever movie on the lawn! We had to wait a little while for it to get dark, so we played games inside while everything got set up and ready, and the sun finally went down! Then we popped a ton of popcorn and watched the movie "When the Game Stands Tall," a powerful story of commitment and faith when everything seems to be falling apart!
Service Project (Clean the Church):
We want to give back, and not just be consumers. We all pitched in and made a HUGE dent in some much needed cleaning around the church building! We vacuumed, moved things to storage, washed windows, etc etc etc. The church was very grateful for our willingness to help clean up around the building!
Middle School Camp:
We had our largest group of Middle School students for camp in YEARS! 8 of our Middle School students joined us for a great week at North Florida Christian Service Camp up in Keystone Heights! We went zip lining, tubing on the lake (being pulled behind the boat), flying off the blob, rocketing down the 200-ft slip-n-slide into the lake, playing human foosball, carpet ball ultimate frisbee, kickball and more! We made friends from all over the state as we joined with a total of 147 Middle School students! But MOST IMPORTANTLY, we worshipped and heard a powerful message about a God who WANTS us! It is incredible to know that we are WANTED by the Creator of the universe! He loves us, created us, and WANTS US!
Alot of times in the church, when you hear the word worship, they mean just singing. And singing is definitely a great way to worship our Lord, but there is much more to it than just that! So we spent a night worshiping through different activities- prayer, song, confession, and more!
We've all said it! But this summer we definitely were BOARD! We created and played a giant life-sized board game! We took elements from all kinds of board games and mixed them together for one giant epic challenge!
MOVE is an annual High School only conference we go to in Tennessee. By far, this is the trip that year after year has the most impact on our students! It is a chance to really dig in deep to our faith and grow in our relationship with God. It is also a time where we get the chance to grow closer to the other students in our group! The trip is PACKED with deep spiritual truths and the opportunity to wrestle with them. But also includes a whitewater rafting trip on the Ocoee river, sports tournaments, and hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park! This year we had 19 students join us for CIY MOVE!!! God was definitely moving in powerful ways during the trip! One student was baptized in the mountain river at Abrams Falls, and at least 3 other students are considering giving their lives to Christ as well!
WOW! This event was crazy! We joined together with First United Methodist Church, Trinity United Methodist Church, and Christian Church at DeLeon Springs and brought in bubble soccer! If you haven't seen this before, basically you are put in a bubble that covers from your waist to above your head. You are on teams of 5 people each, and you are attempting to score a goal with the soccer ball. HOWEVER, and this is where it gets crazy, the other people are trying to stop you by knocking you down! There were 67 students running around knocking each other down and completely taking each other out with giant bubbles! It was CRAZY! And was just as much fun to watch as it was to play! This was the first time we did this event, but it definitely will not be our last!
Middle School Retreat:
For 7 years we have taken time at the end of the summer and gotten away for a couple days with our Middle School students. There are a few purposes for this- 1) To get that one last hurrah of summer 2) To allow our new incoming Middle School students to get to know some of the older students and hopefully form bonds that will help them feel comfortable at youth group, but also help them while on campus as well 3) To intentionally take some time to study the Word of God and grow in our faith. This year, we returned to North Florida Christian Camp for two days filled with awesome activities! In addition to our group times of study, we enjoyed the blob, 200 ft slip-n-slide, tubing on the lake, paddleboards, playing manhunt, etc! We had 11 Middle School students with us this year and had a blast!
Cookout at the Springs:
Summer in Florida means that if you plan something in the afternoons there is a good chance that weather may cause you to have to change your plans! Due to a storm that was moving in, we have postponed our Cookout at the Springs temporarily and will be adding a new date for that soon!