Well we’re back and while we had an awesome week, we’re really happy to be home! Here’s how our week at Teenscene played out:
We arrived on Saturday afternoon and pitched camp on a class-room floor! At least the kids were on the floor while we had the privilege of a double bed (thanks Cookie!) I preached the first of my 7 Cries From the Cross series on Saturday evening to 100-odd young people and officers, and it wasn’t my best sermon ever, which I was gutted about. In reality my head was in a shed as I was struggling to distance myself from some troubling pastoral situations I’d left behind. However, my good friend Cookie (the camp leader) prayed for me that night and I wasn’t ready for what happened next! He put his hand on my shoulder and I was conscious of a hand on my shoulder for the whole prayer. It was only when I opened my eyes that I realised that his hand wasn’t on my shoulder at all, and had only been on there for about 30 seconds. I honestly believe it was God’s hand on my shoulder (and I’m not the sort of bloke to sensationalise stuff like that!) Either way, it was a turning point for me and I knew God’s Spirit with me in a powerful way for the rest of the week.
Both of my sermon series were well recieved. The Best ‘But’s In The Bible was a series of short morning devotions – a kind of thought for the day – which the kids seemed to enjoy. The 7 Cries From The Cross was preached each evening and was far more meaty and challenging. The Sofa Sessions were again really popular and I spent most evenings tackling question after question from the young people til late into the night. I also spent much of my meal times explaining verses in Mark to one young lad who was so hungry for truth that he spent most of his meal times reading his Bible (the food was awesome by the way!)
The worship was led immensely well by my mate Rhys Jarman and his band of merry men and they introduced us to some fantastic new songs. The team of officers was also first class with no in-house stress all week and a lot of grace and commitment shown. I was privileged to play in the Officers vs Campers football match as a hefty striker. Seeing as I hadn’t played for over 18 months I played pretty good, though we still got thrashed!
God was doing awesome stuff all week with several youths getting saved at different stages of the week, and many dealing with their sin and refreshing their commitment to live for Jesus.
To top it all off my son Josiah started walking for the first time! It was beautiful (though trust me the novelty’s already worn off!!!)
Thanks so much to all who prayed – we had a fantastic week and one we’ll remember for a long time to come. I’m already booked to preach at the Teenscene weekend away in February.
God bless the whole Teenscene family!