The first weekend of December was a very different weekend to what I had experienced before. We were asked to lead worship at Sussex Christian Union’s weekend away which meant we travelled to Carroty Wood, Kent on the Friday and had a weekend full of worship and learning ahead.
In the new year, the CU are aiming to run some outreach events which will hopefully attract many non-Christians. They spent the weekend with us looking at the importance of mission but also growing closer to God and to eachother through their friendships. There was a large number of them and we all stayed there during the weekend in the dorms on site.
We had been invited to lead the worship by Summaya who was in Taste the year before me. She has a big role within the CU Committee and she felt we were the right people to ask along to lead the worship, which was a great privilege to be working with such amazing students! The first meeting on Friday was great; we led them in worship, they had a time of teaching and then prayer. Everyone was really up for getting involved and wanting to be experiencing more of the Holy Spirit.
On Saturday we had a reasonably early start, as we shared breakfast together and had a morning session together. We had Josh with us this weekend which was brilliant because he was really responding to the Holy Spirit during the worship and the worship time was really special. On Saturday morning in the session, we had some students from Oxford University who came and spoke to us about Evangelism. The three of them were brilliant at explaining, and it was so interesting to hear their experiences of evangelism in their lives.
After lunch we had a time where we could play a wide game; however the rest of us went and rearranged the venue ready for the evening session, and also had an epic game of the Mexican train game ! (Me and Josh won twice, of course, GO TEAM! )
The evening meal was interesting! We had offered for Taste to serve the meal so the CU committee could have a break. However, it actually transpired that we ended up serving AND cooking it the bangers and mash. A slight issue with this was that the oven was proving to be difficult, and we had to do everything in a slightly longer way! This was a perfect way for the team to bond! Josh and Andy were mashing the potatoes, Simon and Joy were frying the sausages, the rest of us were running about with gravy and serving the meals when they were ready. It was all hands on deck but it was HILARIOUS ! We were running slightly late, the apple strudels were not cooking in the oven, it was taking AGES! But we managed and it didn’t matter massively that it had been a problem, they appreciated it and we all had a good meal!
The evening session was supposed to be with a speaker, however, they pulled out at the last minute so they decided to change the session to something slightly different. We began with our wonderful game of Jammin’ which was requested by Summaya. We then heard some testimonies from various members of the CU, which were all so encouraging. Arnold, the CU president wrapped it all up and we then spent more time in prayer ministry, and we led some worship around that. They gave the opportunity for people to be anointed with oil and prayed for too.
The late night activity tonight was a campfire! We took a few guitars outside and sang some covers of songs, and also did some more worship songs for them. It was rather late and reasonably chilly, but it was a beautiful evening with them!
Our final morning had Arnold speaking and a final praise party. It was sad to say goodbye to them all, we had gotten to know some of them well and I had some good discussions with some of the girls about life at Uni—they didn’t manage to put me off!!!
It would be great to continue to pray for this CU as they look towards their mission week in Feb/March time. I believe God will really honour their sacrifice and bless them through their time of outreach.