Too often we think of time away as when teenagers make a commitment, but they’re by no means the only ones God is at work in
My son, Jacob, would have called himself a Christian. We had brought him up believing in Jesus, we read the Bible and prayed together a bit and he went to Sunday school.
We went to Word Alive at Prestatyn and he went to his kids’ group. Towards the end of the event one his leaders said Jacob wanted to pray a prayer of commitment. So the three of us talked for a while and then in a noisy Pontins restaurant with plates clattering and lots of chatter, Jacob prayed to follow Jesus.
Later that day he talked about it, almost musing to himself. He said: “I feel different, I don’t know what it is. Yes, I do. I used to believe it. Now I feel it.” He went on: “It’s amazing — God loves us. I don’t know why he loves us, when we are so bad. But he just does. And Jesus died for us to forgive us.” It was very special and I thank God for that time, that event, and those children’s leaders.
The power of prayer
Our Spring Harvest theme in 2019 was Unlimited: When You Pray. My family was confronted with a difficult issue recently, and my little girl simply said: “Let’s pray! No rules, no limits!” It was what she had learned in her children’s group and it continues to help her navigate life.
Praying across the ages
I’m in my 80s. The highlight of my week at Spring Harvest this year was three young girls asking if they could pray for me.
Inspired by the leaders
I was so looking forward to going on Kepplewray Venture because I’d never been on a Venture holiday before. I didn’t know anyone else who was going, but I was excited about meeting new people. It was one of my first holidays away from my family, and although I missed them everyone was super nice and helpful and made me feel right at home.
My favourite activity during the holiday was rock climbing. The morning and afternoon teaching seminars were great fun and the Bible teaching on the book of John was amazing! It made me think about how God connects with us, and how he speaks to us through prayer. I particularly liked how all the leaders shared their personal experiences and stories with us. I found that this really helped me to understand the passages better. Since the holiday I have had a much better understanding of what it means to be a Christian, and I’ve enjoyed church more.
Part of something bigger
For the last couple of years we’ve taken time as a family to go to the Hillsong conference in London. It’s great for our kids (who are 5 and 2) as we go to a small church, so to get them alongside large-scale kids’ work and allowing them to be invested in for a few days has really helped our family. Our kids come back enthused by God and inspired to serve in church. The investment is worth it when we see them run through to kids’ church on a Sunday because they love it and love Jesus.