HS Retreat Recap

For Freedom (Galatians 5:1)

A couple of weekends ago, September 20-22nd, we had the opportunity to take a group of our high school students on a retreat. We were able to partner along side Owensboro Christian Church's high school ministry for this retreat. It was a great opportunity for our students to see the bigger body of Christ in Owensboro. Their brothers and sisters in Christ that they have right in their schools.

Our retreat was hosted at OCC on Friday night and then we traveled to Graceland Baptist Church in New Albany, Indiana for the rest of our weekend. We had the pleasure to have Ryan Brown, Graceland's Ministries Pastor, as our guest speaker. He lead us through the freedom that we have in Christ and how we can stay in that freedom. For us to live in the freedom that Christ calls us into, we identified four things we must do to live free.

1. Identify Our Captor (Luke 8)

In our worldly life we have many things that take ahold of us and keep us trapped in sin. These things are our natural barriers that keep us for the fullness of God's grace. To live in the fullness of the Freedom that God is providing for us, we must identify our captor. We need to consciously know what is keeping us tangled up in our sin. I don't know what your is but it could be: Fear, Guilt, Addiction, Depression, Anxiety, Shame, Pain, Unforgiveness.

2. Live a Life of Worship (John 12:1-9)

We continued our conversation through our Freedom, we see that we are called to live a life of worship. Martha was so caught up doing things that she was missing quality time with Jesus the Messiah. One the other hand, Mary is sitting at His feet soaking it all in. She does something irrational and puts a very expensive perfume on Jesus feet. These seems bonkers those around to see it, but Mary is tuned in to her freedom. This word does not compare to the savior, so she lives a life of worship of the one that deserves all of our heart.

3. Stay Even When it is Dark (John 20:1-16)

In this passage we are walking along with Mary Magdalene. Jesus just died, the person she had following for some time. He is dead! What now? Mary doesn't just run off when all seemed hopeless, instead she approached the tomb to honor her teacher. To her surprise the tomb was empty and she ran to tell the disciples. If she had not stayed, and trusted in her love and loyalty to Jesus, she might of missed this moment. God is a redeemer, even the saddest moments in our lives, He can redeem them for His glory. We see this in Jesus death and resurrection. So when it gets dark and stormy, we need to live free by sticking to our faith even when that darkness comes.

4. Share Your Freedom (John 20:17-21 & Acts 1:6-8)

As we continue with Mary Magdalene, we see that when she embraces Jesus she does not want to let go. Mary loves the Lord, but Jesus had more to do and knew that His leaving would be better for us. Jesus trusted Mary to go and tell the disciples what He had said, to share the news. On their arrival, we see that Jesus tells them "Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you." (John 20:21 NIV) Jesus mission was coming to an end, and It was time to pass the torch to those who have been redeemed through His sacrifice.

In Acts 1:6-8, we see that Jesus is rebuking His disciples. We are not called to have all the answers or to be perfect. By the Holy Spirit, we will become witnesses to the regions around us and all around the world. Jesus may have ascended but we inherited the Holy Spirit, God's spirit dwelling in us, guiding us along God's will. We might not know the how or when but we are called to share what it is that God has shown us. We need to share the Freedom that we have in Him, so that others can experience the same Freedom that we all need.
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