by Bethany Wouters, Senior Editor/OTE Worship Leader
This past week, the On The Edge staff went on a retreat at Twin Peaks Christian Conference Center. Each year, we’ve gathered together for a few days of bonding, refreshment, and preparation before the five-week discipleship program begins. Through fellowship, daily group devotions and meetings, games, and worship nights, each of us not only grow closer to one another, but to the Lord, as well. The majority of our staff this summer is new, either to the program entirely or as a student-turned-staff member, so it was a different week from the previous retreats I’ve attended. I love getting to know new people, especially those who are joining a ministry like OTE, and it’s a sweet time for those who don’t live and serve with us year-round to come and hang out with old friends.
First-year counselor Amber Escalona said, “The staff retreat was an incredible time for us to really wait upon the Lord and understand His heart for what He wants for the kids this summer. Being open for the Holy Spirit to speak was such an awesome thing! Also, the fellowship and friendships made were super sweet!”
Photos by Aaron Sabio, Rainier Fajardo, and Em Faatolo.
Every night, the staff gathered together for an evening of worship and prayer. I think out of everything that we did during the retreat, the worship nights were the most powerful and meaningful event. Seeing the Spirit move so quickly and mightily was amazing, and being encouraged by each other and the Lord, brought a renewed sense of unity. This is the closest I’ve felt to the staff out of the three years I’ve served with OTE.
Delanie Testerman, returning staff member, said, “The staff retreat was probably the most Spirit-filled one we’ve had yet. The unity of the group this year is unlike what we’ve had before, and I feel like the Lord has anointed a staff that’s ready and willing to do His work, and are excited about it. “
Assistant director Ben Brown thought it was “refreshing and needed by all. It was definitely what God wanted us to do, and I believe everyone got something out of it, whether or not they think so. Because of the staff retreat, we are more prepared than last year for what God has in store.”
If this summer is anything like the staff retreat, we are going to be incredibly moved by the Spirit. All of us are eager to see what God is going to do these next five weeks, and are expectant of a mighty revival in the hearts of all who come to On The Edge! Pray for us as we minister to a hundred students, that we might exemplify Christ in every situation, and for the students to be open and willing to receive the work of the Lord.