Over the weekend 27 Salt and Light students experienced fun and fellowship as they traveled to Caberfae Peaks ski resort near Traverse City, Michigan.
The group left West Lafayette after classes Friday night, and braved the cold, wind, and snow as they drove to Immanuel Baptist Church where Ben Whipple is an associate pastor. Immanuel graciously provided the group a free place to stay, complete with rooms to sleep in, hot showers, a kitchen, and a welcoming committee, which consisted of Ben getting up in the middle of a very cold night to usher the students into the warmth of the church.
The next day the group hit the ski slopes, some harder than others, and enjoyed picture perfect skiing weather. For several of the students, this was their first time skiing, while others took to the slopes like they had been born with skis on. The more advanced skiers from our group were especially helpful to the beginners, by showing methods and explaining best skiing practices. They encouraged the beginners, and often helped the new skiers up after they would fall. Some of the students tried their hand at snowboarding which seemed to be significantly more difficult than skiing. At the end of the day everyone seemed to have improved their sport of choice as well as enjoyed the fellowship that took place. The group was blessed with many fun stories to tell and no injuries. The best wipe-out award was given to Jake, who was able to accidentally take out three other people on his way down the slope.
At the end of the day the group packed up and returned to Immanuel Baptist Church for dinner, followed by a time of singing, prayer, and devotions. Abraham led the group in many songs that filled the room with praises to the Lord, and Sam gave a devotional. After the devotional the group was asked to share what had been on their hearts or minds. Some students opened up and explained hardships that had been going on in their lives, while others asked for prayer. One particular insight that struck me was when a student shared what she had learned from her mentor. The lesson learned was about friendship and how just because we may not "click" with someone doesn't mean we shouldn't put effort into becoming their friend.
The next day, the group attended the morning church service at Immanuel Baptist before striking out for home. During the return trip the students discussed and challenged each other in ways of spreading the gospel. Some of the discussions included our nation's history and the godly men who shaped it, how Christians are to approach homosexuality, the opportunities that Salt and Light students were given to speak with local Michigan residents about Salt and Light, the earth’s creation and the science behind it, and many other fascinating topics along the way.
For me, it was a wonderful time to learn from the students and invest time in getting to know them. This trip left an impression on me from witnessing the Christ-like attitudes of the students, seeing the students get up early to do their own personal devotions, watching the students help others around them, hearing their testimonies, and experiencing their servant-like hearts and attitudes. I was truly impressed by the group and glad to see many good ambassadors for Christ.