So the second part of my trip recap comes from the other side. Once we came back every afternoon we had time to shower (I will never again take for granted a 10 minute shower) and eat dinner before worship time. I enjoyed the time between dinner and worship, as I was able to really get to know people on my team as we sat and chatted and enjoyed the sun setting on the mountains. It got chilly, and by chilly I mean I had jeans and a sweatshirt on each night and was still cold. And it was only around 85 degrees. I miss that weather, no joke. Each night had a different theme during worship. I’ve shared about the night of restoration. We also had a war stories night from the field. It was awesome to hear about what God was doing on other sites and in others’ lives.
More than anything though, in worship, I was struck by the openness of all those teenagers. It really shook me to my core. They worship God with such abandon. They came broken down, hurt, carrying so much baggage from so many sources. They laid it all down to allow God to use them and the Holy Spirit to fill them. I’m not around teenagers much, but I know from my work with college students that kids these days are facing so much more pressure and struggle than before. It really moved me to be more open in my worship. God used them to show me that I’m not giving Him everything in my worship…I’m holding back my praise because I feel that I’ll be judged. That is wrong, and disobedient. God commands our all and I cannot withhold that based on what others may think of me. He’s the holy, just, and righteous God on His throne…who am I to keep any praise from Him? I was very convicted and found myself fully worshiping Him in the remainder of the services. It was one of the most life-changing things for me and I will carry it with me forever. Hands raised, tears flowing, singing my heart out to my God who loves me and my Savior who died for me. I was made for nothing more than that…glorifying Him.