So last week I selected to complete the challenge of Attend a Divisional/Territorial Meeting or Congress. The reason I selected this one and did not pull it from the hat as I have done is that these events do not happen regularly and this one was a big event. Regardless this is the task I had to do and so I best tell you guys all about it.
The task actually began the night before if I am honest with a conversation with my parents while we were cooking supper. The crux of the argument was from my Dad that I would not wear any clothes which had more than the normal number of holes in them. This for those that don't know me being a dig at my trademark torn jeans. These jeans of which there are many pairs are worn everywhere with the exception of work and general bumming round the house, they are very much a part of who I am. After giving a short but polite response that I would wear what I wanted as there is no dress code for meeting Jesus I retreated to my room. After a short conversation with a friend of mine it was decided that there was another way to express my individuality without upsetting my parents. There were a number of Biblical quotes thrown round to honour my parents and so it was settled that I would do nothing to begin the day on a bad note.
So on the morning of the Congress I surprised my parents by being dressed quite snappily and being quite bright and bouncy despite it being 6am, not a time I see very often. And so we headed off on the long drive to the congress in a minibus filled with members of my Church. This was a particularly boring section of the day which I chose to listen to my ipod and catch up on the news with a cup of tea. Probably not the best way to spend time preparing for such a big event but it at least put me in a very good mood, especially the tea.
Once we arrived I met up with some friends and left the people I had travelled with to spend time with my friend who has been invaluable to me in my spiritual growth. We found our seats and sat down and waited for the service to begin, happily enjoying the lolly pops I had pocketed before leaving the house. This service was possibly one of the biggest moments in my life so far, and definitely the biggest moment in my Christian life since becoming a Christian. It wasn't that this service was the best I have ever been to but it was the right moment for something big to change in my life.
During the service there was a period where the mercy seat at the front was opened up for those who wished to use it. Now the mercy seat is something I normally do not agree with, I feel it is often abused and used for the wrong reasons, that it is used by preachers and congregation alike as a symbol of public recognition of sins. But that is for another post. However on this morning I was sat there in my seat with my friend on their knees in private prayer knowing that I had to go to the front and talk with a particular minister. The minister in question is someone who I have talked and prayed with before about my past, present and future with God. The last time we had talked it was regarding my Dad and telling him about my future, and I knew that day was the day I must tell him. And so I went to the mercy seat to pray with said minister and asked for courage and strength to talk to my dad. The rest of that story can be found here.
Now the rest of the day was a great opportunity to meet up with old friends, catch up with people I had not seen in a while and generally enjoy the atmosphere of the congress. For the rest of the day I was a bit euphoric and nothing was able to dampen my spirits, not even running out of lollies before the evening service was about to begin. Although the evening service had a better preacher and was widely regarded as the best of the weekend I personally did not gain as much from it as I had the mornings session. However I did sit through the whole service feeling as high as I have for a long time.
The drive home was a little tense with my Dad sat next to me, but he did not want to talk about our earlier conversation and my Mum was more concerned about the outcome of Strictly Come Dancing. However although my Dad did not want to talk about our conversation he was strangely talkative for my Dad. I know that the news I gave him was quite a bit of a shock and that it will take him some time to get used to it, I can see that in time he will come round to the idea and support me.
So all in all I believe that it is another successful challenge completed. And so that leads me on to what my next challenge will be. As it is remembrance Sunday today I will be completing the challenge of Attend a service of remembrance for this weeks challenge. As usual you can catch up on all the previous weeks challenges and the challenges yet to come on the Soldier's Challenge tab or by following the link. Check back next week to read about this weeks challenge and see what is in store for me the week after when I will again be pulling out one of the remaining tasks from my hat. Hope you have a great week and feel free to visit any time to catch up on my daily posts through the week.
This blog is supposed to be, as much as I can, my daily journey through life as a Christian. I hope it to be my thoughts and feelings on life but be as grounded in the Christian message as it can. My intention is not to create a daily readings or bible study guide but to look at my life in terms of a Christian trying to find and follow God's mission using his Life User's Manuel AKA the Bible.