Summer Wake Group Recap

Published by Jonny Nelson on

Summer Wake Group Recap

This summer has been over the top awesome! I really wanted to challenge the kids to be open with where they are at in their relationship with God, because I wanted to figure out how I could provide space for them to encounter God and become more deeply rooted in their faith. Therefore, the theme of the summer was identity and testimony. Many of the kids that attended were searching high and low to “find themselves.” Think about it, everyday they are constantly hit with messages from media, celebrities, and other friends about what it means to live a rewarding life. Therefore, this summer I have been teaching the students about the importance of establishing an identity as a child of God. They have heard many testimonies from staff members at JSAW.

Towards the end of the summer I had them do an activity. The purpose of the activity was to help younger adolescents see trends throughout their lives. First, they all laid out their lives on a piece of paper, using multi-colored post it notes to mark the many significant moments of their lives, from the joyful to the painful experiences. I had no idea if they were going to take this activity seriously, but to my amazement the kids dove right in and started categorizing and labeling significant moments of pain, joy, experiences of God, and most importantly spiritual growth. The next week they brought back their multi-colored timeline and shared it with the group. This was a time of discovery for most of them as I asked them questions after they finished sharing like: How did your moments of pain affect how you saw God at that time of your life? How do you see God as a result of your many experiences? How do you want to continue to develop spiritually? Then I ended with a statement of gratitude for their sharing.

Many of the kids also progressed tremendously in their riding abilities. One of the 12 year old guys was learning back flips behind the boat by the time the summer ended. We also had many guys learn for the first time how to get up on a wakeboard and wake surfboard. Most of those kids now are learning to jump the wake on the wakeboard and riding behind the boat with no rope on the wake surfboard.

I have been blessed to witness the amazing spiritual growth these kids are experiencing this summer. Your generous support has allowed me access into the lives of these kids. Many of them have not stepped foot into a church but are interested in Jesus and his good news for humanity. There is a lot of work ahead, and the boat has become a familiar place of belonging and support for the youth of action sports. Therefore, please continue to pray for us as the ministry continues to grow and develop. Also, if you have or know someone that would like to offer up their boat for next years’ programming please contact myself (Jake Tastad) at (651) 335-3929. Have a wonderful day!


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