Pastor Patty started off our Morning Prayer time in the office with a Scripture from Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice.” My honest, initial reaction was…Woohoo our last night of Confirmation with a group of eighteen outgoing and energetic youth is tonight! But the reality is, I LOVE the Confirmation process. Getting to know the youth and watching them grow in their faith and their relationships with each other over the eighteen weeks is amazing. Yes, there were times that we may have gotten very off topic, but “flexible” is a word we say over and over again in student ministry. The truth is I have enjoyed every minute with this Confirmation class through the serious times and through the downright silly times. I rejoice because I had the opportunity to study Scripture with youth. I rejoice when the light bulb goes off or the shy person begins to open up and discuss what the Scripture means to them. I even rejoice when they ask a difficult question which requires me to answer them later. I know, I have taken Confirmation 7 times and I still don’t have all the answers. This week, though, I am truly rejoicing and praising God that eighteen youth are confirming their faith, have recognized that God is alive and at work in their life, and are responding to God’s grace publicly. We are rejoicing that their journey of faith is just beginning, and we are excited to watch each of them continue to grow and mature in their faith. Tami and I feel we have the best jobs in the world, and we are truly blessed to experience this journey year after year. Confirmation is not ending, it is only beginning.
During this journey, several adults volunteered their time to make Confirmation meaningful through being a mentor, teaching a lesson, or being a small group leader. We rejoice and appreciate the gifts they have brought to our youth. The mentors have been meeting with their Confirmands throughout this journey; praying for them, answering questions, and learning and growing together. On Confirmation Sunday, the mentors will present to their Confirmands a cross. This cross then gets placed on the wall upstairs in the Ministry Activity Center. The cross remains on the wall until the youth become seniors. At the Senior Banquet, the youth are presented with their cross to take to college, the military, or into their working world. This cross is a reminder of their journey of faith and God’s unconditional love.
We would love to see you all at the 9:30 service to support our youth in their journey of faith and take a peek at their crosses that will soon appear on the cross wall.
My prayer for each of the Confirmands comes from Paul’s writings in Philippians 2:1-5, “If you find any comfort from being in the Annointed, if His love brings you some encouragement, if you experience true companionship with the Spirit, if His tenderness and mercy fill your heart; then brothers and sisters, here is one thing that would complete my joy – come together as one in mind and spirit and purpose, sharing in the same love. Don’t let selfishness and prideful agendas take over. Embrace true humility, and lift your heads to extend love to others. Get beyond yourselves and protecting your own interests; be sincere, and secure your neighbors’ interests first. In other words, adopt the mind-set of Jesus the Annointed. Live with His attitude in your hearts.”
Written By: Christie Erwin,
Cypress UMC Youth Director