Replay: 30 Hour Famine & Summer Retreat

Wow, things have been busy the past few weeks for Element!  On Saturday, 6/20, we had our 30 hour famine, and many of us went hungry so that hungry children around the world can eat.  We had a yard sale at Lincoln Middle School and some of us went door-to-door in the neighborhood to inform our neighbors about our cause and ask for donations.  We raised over $1600 that day!

This past weekend (6/25-6/28) was also our Element Summer Retreat!  We kicked off our time together by welcoming all the 6th and 7th graders joining us for the first time.

We did something new for this retreat-- we formed teams made up of students of various ages, led by a high school team lead.  Each team competed for points which could be awarded for helpful behavior, volunteering to answer questions, etc.  We fostered some friendly competition, and by the end of the retreat, each team got to know each other very well :)

The theme for the retreat was "Image is Everything."  Pastor Will and Teacher Dan Chiang gave messages on how we were created in God's Image, which is what makes us special and valuable in God's eyes, but that the world sells us a different image that we need to live up to.  None of us could forget the illustration of the "physical image" that everyone can see, and "God's image," our heart that is not visible. When we buy into the world's lies, that image gets crushed.  It is only when we accept God's invitation to come home that this image can be formed to become more like Jesus.  Praise God for our brothers and sisters who accepted this invitation at the retreat-- Taylor Lee, Jackie Kim, Jackie Quan, and Josh Jeng!  And many others made significant rededication decisions.

We also made sure to have plenty of fun-- we made 2 lake trips to go kayaking and rafting, and "Game Master Josh" led us into many... "creative" games to say the least.  Each team had the chance to build a shelter out of newspaper and tape, become a human appliance, choreograph dance moves to "Joy to the World," and much more.  And of course, our retreat wouldn't be complete without a time of singing and toasting marshmallows around the campfire.

Special thanks to Teacher Emily and Ellen for preparing our wonderful meals and to the praise band who came up to lead us into some rockin praise.

As Teacher Kevin would say:  God is good... all the time, and all the time... God is good!