The question we get a lot with ice climbing is "how does it compare to rock climbing". The truth is, it just doesn't! The Ventures have discovered how different they really are. We are so proud of them for all their hard work that week. Each of them put forth the maximum effort in their climbs. I heard many loud shouts of victory as each of them made it to the top of a climb.
We taught something called the "E" zone during their rock climbing class, which was used to emphasis encouragment. When they climb, they enter the encouragement zone and they have to speak positive encouragement to each other as they belay and climb. During the week of ice climbing we re-emphasised that point with the words of Eph. chapter 4:1-13. We are to "dillengetly preserve the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace". He says God gave some as teachers, apostles, and pastors ect, for the building up of the body of Christ. We are to remember that to each one of us, a measure of grace has been given and in all humility, gentlness, patience, forbearance, and love we are to preserve the oneness of the body of Christ until we all reach the fullness of Christ in the end. During this second semester we have been going through a series called "Gospel in Life". The gospel should be working itself into every detail of our life to change us to be more like Christ. We have been challenged with thoughts on personal idols, serving the city, religion vs. relationship, and being a part of community. The gospel has challenged us in all those areas to lay down ourselves, and look at the ultimate example, who is Christ. Be praying that we would learn these concepts and put them to use because of our love for Christ and not out of a religious obligation.
In the next few weeks we will be doing some traveling to Seattle for a our Gospel in Culture class. Pray for our safety and for the students to glean as much as possible from the experience there. We will be doing a winter camping trip and they also have a class on Spiritual Warfare. Pray for their hearts to continue to be open to the lessons God is teaching them. We rejoice with them already in the ways which we see God working in their lives.
Thank you again for praying.