Wow! If only you could have been there (some of you were!) at Youth In Mission in Germany, April 21 – 25.
We often hear that Europe is post-Christian. Don’t believe a word of it. In fact, what I experienced there was anything but.
…though I know these emotions don’t tend to last long, I know that this will.
It was a life-changing experience for me to see these young people united through their love of Christ and passion for spreading the Three Angels messages. I came back so invigorated, and though I know these emotions don’t tend to last long, I know that this will.
This year marks the fifth YIM convention. They’ve sold out every year, with more than than 1800 registering this year alone. But perhaps even more exciting was the fact that no one who registered was over thirty-five years old!
Elder Ted Wilson preached. His passion, sincerity, and vision for the church, message, revival and reformation was powerful and contagious for all of us youth. It means so much, especially for the youth over there, to know that their world leaders are on fire for the message and mission. We all, especially young people, need a purpose in life. The call to preach to every nation, kindred, tongue and people (Revelation 14:6) can give us, at any age, a real sense of purpose and meaning.
The program was fantastic. Everyone who organized and led out was younger than I am. Despite the age (or, probably, because of it) this was one of the best run programs I have ever seen.
I had the privilege of sharing a seminar on leadership. It was an absolute delight! We packed into a classroom and learned how to lead out in a local congregation, youth movement or even a business. The young people in Germany are passionate about getting things done.
Speaking of which, everyone went on outreach on Sabbath afternoon; an entire train was rented! The city of Mannheim will never be the same.
Breakfast was bread, water and jam.
Each day the program began early in the morning and ended late at night. The young people slept in classrooms – about thirty per room in sleeping bags on the floor. Breakfast was bread, water and jam. Lunch was meager. Supper was bread, water and jam. No question, this wasn’t five star lodging – but no one cared. They were there to have an experience with God, not an experience at a convention. The enthusiasm was electric.
Best of all, I had a chance to meet with youth leaders from 12 different countries. We are working on developing a plan to reach all of Europe. And from what I saw in Germany, we might very well reach so-called post-Christian Europe before we reach Christian America.