This weekend, I pulled some of my High School Youth out of school on Friday, we loaded a van, and headed to Virginia Beach for the High School Zone run by Youth Encounter. I have been attending Youth Encounter events for 15 years now, first as a youth, now as a leader. I know the speakers, I know the musicians, and the spirit really moves when Youth Encounter puts the elements into play. This weekend was no exception. We got to listen to the wonderfully hilarious stories of Bill Yonker and hear music by Captive Free and Echelon.
Sometimes the cost of these weekends is a little hard to stomach. But then we attend. we have conversations that we might never have had at church. Our hearts and our minds our made more open by what we have heard. Along with my youth, I am renewed, opened to words I have never heard, and am experiencing these things with them, along side then. Through this, I am made their equal in the experiences we have. We talk on the same levels. It opens up doors to our relationships and conversations that were previously blocked. I’m glad that we went and spent the money. I’m glad we prayed together. I’m glad we discussed have hope amidst broken homes, amidst broken lives. I’m glad that Christ gave us the opportunity to experience the things Bill had to tell us together. I’m glad Youth Encounter is so dedicated to bringing the gospel of Christ to the youth of the church.