God's Witness Revisited
The Youth Encounter Weekend just ended today and I am quite hesitant to go back to the workplace and leave the wonderful experience of solely focusing on the one thing I love doing the most. Youth Ministry. On the drive back home a couple of us have been talking about full time youth ministry and how we can make it happen in this apostolate's generation. For some of us this has already been a long time vision. But it remains a dream. So tonight, I find myself lifting up this dream and hoping for God to bless it and be the Maker I need Him to be.
This is an excerpt of a post I wrote in my old blog. It was written on October 4, 2005 after the 3rd Youth Encounter (the first one I served in).
Given that my writing has been cooperating with me lately, I reminisce about what I wrote back then and find myself feeling the same things tonight. It's been 7 years. I cannot believe that it has been that long and yet the wonderful blessing of loving what you're doing has resurfaced in me. It's a passion pursuing me. And as I reminisce, I pray that one day I will understand the cause I am indeed witnessing to.
October 4, 2005
I witness for God's glory tonight. Witness His fire in the Youth Apostolate. Witness His fire in the Youth Praise Ministry. Witness His fire in each of the people in the Youth I have closely worked with for the past 3 months. Witness His fire in me. And I am moved. I am changed. I am ignited with a passion that burns to see the youth of His church move forward and claim their places as God's warriors in a battle for souls.
The long preparation for the Youth Encounter Weekend has ended. And a new journey begins. I am melancholy about endings and I am again melancholy about this one. I will definitely miss the practices that have filled most my nights. For it has not only kept my life focused on the prize but it has kept my demons from robbing me of what I thought I lost. Myself.
I don't think I had much of an experience when I was young. I was lost. Blind. Troubled. The idea of being part of a group during my younger days scared me. I feared that thought of being an outcast. But being invited to play for the Youth Ministry has given me back an experienced I missed out on. And that's being part of a home filled with people who are filled with so much zest for life. So much thirst for God. And maybe sometimes their passion seeps out in the wrong places but the passion I saw at work during the weekend was definitely right. And though crooked their paths may be, the zigzag ways of each person who contributed to the outpouring of heaven's grace upon 60 young lives that have been changed these past 3 days displayed a bursting of fireworks against the dark night that's been long draped upon their souls.
I have not come to know each one as closely as I would've wanted to. But those few that I have been drawn to are enough to show me that the Youth's Spirit is indeed worth fighting for. Each character intricately defined. Each quirk. Each crazy antic. All cacophonies of personalitiesjust merged and though seemingly chaotic, I felt a profound sense of energy that comes from a longing to be heard, to be seen, to be acknowledged, to be loved...to be set free. And GOD DID IT ALL that this weekend.
I am amazed. I am humbled by how God has shown me that though I have walked life's journey ten years ahead of them...having a youthful heart gives you a strength that can push forth any obstacle that you may have in worshipping God as He deserves. And sometimes it may not be perfect, but I realize that God does not look on our perfection. He looks at our persistence. Youth persists.
I have so many memorable moments that I hold so close to my heart with these people now and I will treasure it and cradle it forever.
Seeing Louanne make her battle cry that freed her from her own bondages to exhort Youth Praise into raising the level of their own worship experience. Seeing Carlo's heart keep on beating and burning with desire to let his guitar's song fly even through a moment of breaking his strings. Seeing Gian come back to the heart of worship after a long absence. Seeing Chris' soul thump to a rhythym that did not break despite the melody he could no longer hear. Seeing Jacy's commitment to the music despite groping for the right bassline. Seeing Gians' face exude with bliss as she let's the Spirit in. Seeing Leo's passion seep through by always being there on call. Seeing Ina grow in God's love despite her heart being broken. Seeing Kaisie's eyes tear up as she hears God's call for her to stay and be the songbird she is. Seeing Carlos' brows meet in an intense expression of uninhibited prayer.
If only everybody could see the way the Spirit has let me see that the fire that burns inside the youth is not of destruction...but of a deep yearning for rebirth.
They are God's gifts to me. Maybe some I have connected more closely than the others but yet God has allowed me to see His glory despite the different levels of connectedness I have with them. I at awe.
God definitely is a Creator because from nothing...from chaos...from differences...that make up the substance that keeps this ministry together...He gave us sound. He gave us music. He gave us song. But most of all, He gave us EACH OTHER.