Praise the Lord, the Holy Spirit is alive and well at J.P. in Romney, WV!
For our first four days here, Monday and Tuesday were workdays, Wednesday we had off for “free day” and Thursday was another workday. The work is going fine. The jobs are getting finished, and the kids are working hard (most of the time) as the crews work to be the hands and feet of Christ. But it’s not the work or the jobs that I want to talk about here; it’s the presence of Christ’s spirit flowing through this place at night, touching so many hearts and moving many of the students to tears.
The staff and worship leaders do an amazing job with their evening program and worship music. On Thursday night of the trip, some of the families whose homes that we worked on were our guests for dinner and were also invited to stay for the evening program and worship time. As the week has progressed, the kids have gotten more and more into worshiping God. That night, they were really moved. Hands were raised, voices were lifted and tears were flowingespecially after writing our sins on a piece of paper and leaving them in a bowl at the front of the room where they were lit on fire and extinguished, representing how once we ask for forgiveness, Christ completely removes our sins as if they never existed. After this, the most appropriate songAmazing Gracewas sung by all. Then we closed in prayer and the kids left hugging and crying.
While outside, something very special happened; I was honored to pray with two Floris UMC students separately who both made the choice to pray and accept the presence of Christ and God’s grace in their lives. The first student approached me and asked to speak with me, telling me that they really wanted to thank God for His presence in her life and wanted to allow God to be a bigger part of her life. The second student was with another leader, and I was asked to join them in prayer. Before starting, I asked that student the same question. She too was ready and willing to more fully surrender her life to God. I believe that this is what this week has really been about. Not just the work or the jobs or the teamsbut getting closer to Christ in our hearts; acknowledging God’s presence in our lives and surrendering our lives to God.
God is so awesome, and these kids know it!
Submitted by Teri Taylor