Metanoia ~ “What was once done out of obedience, is now done out of love.”
Oh hey there! Greetings from Team 11, serving at Providence Academy in Plymouth, MN. As we come close to our last few weeks here, our hearts are warm and spirits are joyful, even though it is still snowing in April! With just about a month of ministry left, we are pouring everything we have into our team and our ministry.
While the school was on their two week spring break we traveled around Minnesota putting on a total of seven retreats. After one of the retreats a young girl approached a NET member and shared that she had been wanting to get more involved in her faith but hadn’t known how. She said that the retreat came at the right time and completely changed her life. We all agreed that it was such a gift to be able to step out of our normal routine of ministry and have the opportunity to meet so many young people. In addition to that, we also said that it helped us appreciate our ministry here at Providence so much more. We have the honor to see these students every single day. After their retreats we can talk to them at lunch the next day and see how they’re still doing, and again in a week, and in a month. The relationships we get to build with the students are amazing and we can see them grow throughout the year.
We’ve learned so many things through serving with NET this year. One of these lessons is to forget your pride, it is pointless. We are constantly humbled by our schedules, by being pushed to do things we may have never done before, and by standing up for what is right, no matter how that makes us look. We have also learned that rejection is not the end of the world. We cannot let ourselves be discouraged when people turn their backs, in fact it unites us to Christ and His suffering on an even deeper level. Rejection has also built our team up on a deeper level because no matter how difficult our day is we know that our team is behind us and the love of God is within us. We cannot let fear dictate our actions. Being intimidated by students that are years younger than us is sometimes a legitimate fear, but always putting off conversations until tomorrow will never bring about conversion and is definitely not the right response to Jesus calling us to get out of the boat and follow Him. For we did not come and serve this year to be loved, but to love.
“Conversation breeds conversion,” is something that we were taught during training. We have seen this to be true in a special way. Daily prayer, aka conversation with God, has brought about conversion in our hearts and the hearts of those around us. One team member shared that before NET she never knew how much grace played a role in her life. She just tried her best to serve God and that was all. Now she understands that any and every good she does is made possible by the grace of God. Our imperfections are nothing to God in the ocean of His mercy and grace. Growth in vulnerability with each other and the Lord is another area in which we have all grown. Another team member shared that he has changed a lot this year and his biggest change would be in now knowing how to put faith into action.
Thank you for all of your support this year, please keep our team in your prayers as we come close to finishing off the year.
Alayna, James, Theresa, Tyler, Lynsey, Jeremy, Kaylee, and Mark