Don't get me wrong, but this has just been a long term. And to top it off, because of a late easter, and the fact that because study and extra work on all departments has been piled on, our Easter break was postponed until this weekend. But the last term has been amazing... and I want to share that here...
It started off in January, and straight back into Friday Night Chill, with a new logo, designed by one of the young people and Tristan, one of my fellow youth work interns. The group has been running for 3 years, and this was a very monumental moment in the life of FNC. We are hoping to really use the logo this term on t-shirts and hoodies, cost dependant, but I am very excited about this. Here is the final version of the new logo, designed by Ben Shannon!!
I was very happy with this, and the young people are coming around to liking it. But that is just the physical look of the group, how about the God part. I have gone on a journey this term, with giving the group over to God. When my boss put me in charge of FNC back in September, I immediately started to suffer from the well known sin of pride, and making the group mine, but I realised, through two of my volunteers who asked if we can worship during prayers before we open the doors, that this group really is God's and I am just looking after it for him, with Jeannie, my co-leader. And since then, we have seen God break through in a few ways.
Just after half term, we had 2 healings at the end of the night. I was walking down with a group of the 14 year olds, when one girl told told me her finger had started hurting, so I immediately asked her if I could pray for her. She shrugged her shoulders and said why not, and her friends gathered round. I prayed a very quick prayer, getting straight to the point, and asking for healing in Jesus' name. And then stopped, looked at her, hoping for something. She then looked at me and shouted 'no way, that is so weird, you're like the next Jesus'. I stopped her right there and told her that it was Jesus using me. Then on of the boys watching had badly damaged his fingers and said 'try it on me'. My immediate inner reaction was like 'Jesus I hope you're on a roll here, cos it's hard to explain the now and not yet theology'. So I did the same short prayer and again, in amazement (and the look on his face was a picture), all the pain in his fingers had gone... He kept shouting, 'i can't believe it'. I then explained a little about how it really is Jesus doing this, and the best friend of the guy I had just prayed for asked 'so, can we do this as well?' A perfect question to be asked right then. I told him Yes, you can, in Jesus' name you can do many things. And that is something we all need to remember..... In Jesus we can do all things.
This is why I am doing this. These moments are what I live for. Seeing a young person get a glimpse of who God is.
2 other huge successes of this term was the 14-18s Weekend Away, which was at St Marks College in Saffron Walden, near Cambridge. Here we saw God really challenge and move amongst the young people. With Guest speaker Nikki Marfleet and the brilliant James Brown speaking on changing the world, using the story of Daniel and his rebellion against worshipping the golden statue to inspire how God can use us, we expected a brilliant time. And it was. St Marks were very welcoming and the staff there were extremely helpful. We had an afternoon of Trampolining, Archery, and the incredible Assault Course, then some team building exercises followed the fun low ropes. I think my favourite moment was seeing Darren, one of our SEN youths completing the assault course and the low ropes before shouting "AGAIN"!. The weekend however wasn't all disaster free. One of the young leaders had gotten excited and poured her entire roast dinner on her own lap. A classic moment, and one not many will ever forget.
One of my big projects for this term was to teach and enable a group of 11-14s at a local school to light their school production of Bugsy Malone. Word had gotten out about my past career, and it was a golden opportunity for the church to become a bigger presence at the school, and also to promote FNC, which half of the young people who go to FNC attend this school anyway. This project was a huge success for both the school and for my ministry. A couple of the students have started coming to FNC, and one of the students requested that we pray before the show. Just after this, the spotlight which had broken the night before suddenly started to work again. God showed us his presence a lot during that time. The young people wanted to carry on the after school club after easter, so we shall see what happens. But a lot of potential there.
So that was my last term in a nut-shell. There was sooo much more that happened, and I will find time to share these stories in the near future, but these were a few highlights. ]
My plan for the next month is to start a series on role models, and looking at the people that our youths are looking up to at the moment. One thing I would like from you, my reader, is to let me know who you think our current culture role models are, good and bad. This would be a great help in starting me off.
thank you for reading, and I hope you have a lovely couple of weeks. I will, I'll be in Sweden :)
The Captain :)