Last week at IMPACT Dynelle led us in discussion about loving others because Christ first loved us. She challenged students to think about someone who is hard to love, a sibling, someone at school, a friend and try to have a different response. Instead of a response of annoyance or frustration, to take an approach of love. We see Jesus acting out of love time and time again while he was living on earth and even when he was being accused, mocked and hung on a cross. I've included the video we watched if you would like to take a look. Ask your student who they are going to approach/repond to out of love this week.
We reflected on the Gather Event, discussing boldness and bravery. How important it is to be honest with ourselves and the struggles we are dealing with in order to give them to God and allow Him to work through us to bring healing. We broke a pot to help students understand that we are all broken, that we all struggle but that God wants to work in those situations to help us grow and become stronger in Him. Students took a piece of the broken pot and wrote what they are struggling with on one side and how God is bringing healing. It was a pretty powerful representation and time to reflect.
The Gather Event last Wednesday was amazing! We joined hundreds of other middle school students from churches in Holland and Zeeland for worship, to hear speakers, to reflect and to take communion or consider what a commitment to Jesus could mean. The speakers shared about boldness, but from a different perspective than what we might normally consider boldness from. The speakers encouraged boldness with ourselves. The boldness not to hide things going on in our lives, to seek out people who can help us through the hard times. We were given signs to evaluate if we're hiding and time to reflect what we are hiding and how we are hiding it. The next speaker shared ways that we can choose to live bravely, to live boldly. To help us move out a situation that feels too overwhelming. To practice gratitude, to label our emotions, to ask ourselves if we can make a wise decision and then to make connections. The third speaker reminded everyone of how much we are loved and valued by our God who created us. That even when we see ourselves as broken and worthless, that God sees us as beautiful and whole.
It was a powerful night. Most students wrote their reflections on a note card and they may be willing to share those with you!
My name is Josiah from Grand Rapids Michigan and I follow Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Also middle schoolers are cool.