August 15th // Jeremy Stebbins

Posted on by SpokaneYFC

July 31st, we embarked on the second annual 10/10 Trip. Our mission was to share an experience of God’s abundant life with 20 skater kids and a crew of volunteers. I am still catching my breath in awe of God’s goodness in the seven day road-trip style camp where we lived the theme of John 10:10 that “the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I came that they would have life and life abundant.”

One of the ways we saw this theme of abundance was in how God empowered our activity. I encouraged the group at the onset of the trip to practice praying before each attempt at the skatepark. Our volunteers taught and demonstrated seeking God’s direction in all things (yes, even in how we skate!), and many of our young skaters learned how to see God as their “go-to” as they make decisions, finding their courage in Him.

One example that really impacted me was a kid named Ray, who almost let the massive Lincoln City skatepark intimidate him, but after talking it over with God, decided to skate the biggest obstacle in the skatepark. I was dumbfounded by his bravery and impressed by his encouragement to other kids who were sizing up their own challenges at the skatepark. “You can do it, just pray first, that’s what I did”. These other kids did end up taking Ray’s advice into action, and making great progress in their skating.

At night we sat around a bonfire and laughed about how awesome each day had been. Conversations and questions about God would strike up after a short teaching from The Word. God brought into the light where kids hearts were at with Him, and drew them in to His love. After one of these conversations one young man sought out a leader to ask about God, then gave his life to the Lord!

“Life abundant” can be a hard concept for skater kids at home and at school. I know because I’ve been a skater since fifth grade. I remember not fitting in, being dismissed as worthless and being labeled a troublemaker. These kids don’t have high hopes for themselves; they are too busy trying to survive. On this trip, there was a unique moment in time where these kids didn’t have to focus on their basic needs, and could accept Gods love for them and purpose for their lives. It was in this context that we took them to the ocean and gave them opportunities to consider how vast and great our God is, which is reflected in the immensity of his creation.

Moving forward with this group we now have a clearer reading of how to minister to this rag-tag tribe of misfits over the next year, and even greater; they have a new sense of belonging. One of the main points we will continue to focus on is that they need to belong, be noticed, and be loved. We tell these kids they are valuable, and that they don’t need to believe the lies that are just attempts to tear them down. God loves his kids, and he uses his followers to show his smile.

 

JEREMY STEBBINS

Unified Underground Intern
[email protected]

 

READ MORE ABOUT JEREMY AND HIS WORK AT YFC HERE.

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