This past week, Darla received an awesome opportunity to speak at the ‘Grace Brethren National Youth Conference’, which is now referred to as “Momentum.” This conference happens once a year for the Grace Brethren denomations high school youth groups to gather under one roof, at one 4 day conference, to praise God! There were about 2,000 youth that attended, plus their youth leaders and volunteers. Darla was asked to be a power track speaker, which was a time for the high schoolers to break away from the main sessions at the conference, and break off into smaller, 1 hour sessions, with various speakers of their choice.
Darla did a 3 day power track on the more simplified version of, “Returning to Joy When the Pain is Too Deep,” which she named, ‘Stuck.’ She had one hour a day to really reach out to these kids during her conference, and it was very effective. Although the kids have the choice of who they wanted to spend their hour with every day, the majority of the same kids returned everyday to Darla’s conference. We averaged about 100 kids per day! It was a great atmosphere of teenage kids on fire for our God, and the energy in the room was unbelievable.
Darla did a good job of presenting some materials, and talking about our emotions, but she also incorporated ‘play.’ As per her other conferences, when she teaches a principle, the audience then has an opportunity to practice it. The teenagers really had a great time with some of these activities, such as singing the ‘Hallelujah, Praise ye The Lord’ song, building paper towers, and placing their four basic emotions into buckets.
Our hope is that the residing theme of this conference for them will be to go to the Lord with their overwhelming emotions, and let Him help them return to joy. Above all else, He is the only one who can help us through our emotions.
All in all, we had a great time, and God’s work really showed through. We were very blessed with this opportunity.