Sunday, July 31, 2011

When the Bible is Spot on... (which is always)

"He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand."  Psalm 40:2 (NIV, '84)

This past week (Wednesday through Friday) our church held an event for students entering sixth grade through 12th grade.  It was called Teen Madness.  Now, I don't know about you, but when I was a kid my youth group included sitting in someone's living room discussing the Bible.  I'm sure they never even thought about putting the words 'teen' and 'madness' together to title an event.  Times sure have changed.  Teen Madness is one reason I love our church.  They try to make the event as great as it can possibly be to encourage kids who don't normally come to church want to come for these events.  Once they get there, we feed them pizza.  They then head to the worship center for some LOUD music (all Christian, of course) and bouncing around as much as possible.  They then sit and listen to a message for about 20 minutes.  This year's speaker, Clay, was amazing!  He spoke in such a way that the students would be totally interested in what he had to say, and he shared a message that, I think, resonated with most of the students there.

The festivities began on Wednesday night with Blow-Up Night.  I am pretty sure it wasn't called that, but I can't remember the formal name this night was given.  However, 90% of the activities were giant blow-up sets the students could play on.  Inside the church they had a giant blow-up obstacle course the kids could go through and something else which I wasn't quite sure what it was.  They had someone making snow cones and someone making cotton candy.  They also had popcorn.  Everything growing boys and girls need, right?

Thursday night was a concert night.  I didn't attend this night but, judging by the attitudes of my two boys who attended, it was a success.

Friday night was the culmination of the week.  It is the favorite night for most who attend Teen Madness.  Early in the day, the lower grounds of the church are transformed into a slimy, muddy pit.

Fire trucks show up and make the ground even wetter and spray the kids from above while the slime and mud below makes them as dirty as can be.  Before they enter the mud and slime, however, they form teams and paint each other with a designated color of paint, from head to toe.

You can see one of the students hugging me.  She was on the green team.  :-)  I was a volunteer and mainly escorted students to first aid when they had so much slime and mud on their face that they couldn't open their eyes.  I decided before the night began that I wasn't purposely going to stay clean.  The kids think it's fun to chase you if you don't want hugged by them, but I let them hug me; and I got dirty.  That slime was gross, especially when I couldn't even hang onto the arm of someone I'd escort to first aid because there was so much slime on their arm my hand kept slipping, but I was glad to get in and get dirty with the students so they'd know they could count on me to not shy away from them but stick it out no matter how slimy and dirty things get.  Hopefully they'll understand the analogy now that Muckfest is over.

After most of the paint and slime was washed off by the fire hose

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