It has happened a couple of times before…..SNOW at Spring Fling Retreat! Not that the children minded at all. They have a way of turning snowflakes into lots of fun! And that they did! And, add this spontaneous fun to the other activities (zipline, climbing wall, the gaga pit, bomb the pins, the eliminator, archery, and more…) and you know our children had a blast. It certainly was a weekend filled with new adventures and lots of joy.
But beyond the fun, and more important, the children and their leaders spent some great time singing to the Lord, hearing God’s Word, and discussing how to live out what they learned. And there was a lot that was learned.
This year the studies came from the book of Daniel focusing on the sovereignty of God. The phrase that Pastor Ron recited over and over again was that “sovereignty is God doing what He wants, when He wants, to whomever He wants, and IT IS RIGHT!” The children were challenged to remember that God is in charge, and that no matter what happens to them in life, they need to remember that He is still on the throne. When difficult times come they need to ask “What is God doing?” and then “How can I reflect or represent Him in this situation?” After all, that is the reason we all were created: to show the world what God is like in all situations.
Upon reflecting on what they learned, several children said:
- “I learned that we have a merciful, abounding in love, amazing God. I learned how much God is worth and how sinful I truly am and how pure He is. He is amazing!”
- “I learned that God is in control of everything, and that He is mighty and loving.”
- “I learned that I should never go against God.”
- “I learned that the world’s ways may seem easier, but God’s way leads to eternal life.”
- “I was amazed by Daniel’s friends who thought obedience to God was more important than life itself.”
One parent reported a conversation with a child who could not stop talking about all she learned about the Lord. Said the parent with a tear in her eye, “It seemed like a light went on spiritually over the weekend.”
It is our prayer that many lights went on spiritually over the weekend! That’s why we do retreats! We’ve seen God work throughout the years at weekends like this, and we trust Him to continue to form His children into His image. Please pray that the seeds planted this weekend will produce the fruit of eternal life in many of our children.
Click HERE to see retreat pictures.
Written by Ron Elwardt - Website
Ron Elwardt moved to Phoenix from Wisconsin (Go Packers! Go Badgers!) with his wife Ruth and daughters Megan and Becca in 1989. Recently celebrating his 25th year of ministry at Camelback Bible Church, Pastor Ron currently serves as Pastor of Families and Children. “That I may know Him [Christ] and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His suffering, being conformed to His death.” – Philippians 3:10