I have just come back from a YAYP camp in Johor and this is by far the camp that has impacted me the most in recent years. What I wrote in the YAYP wall after the camp was a summary of my experiences.

I’m happy I actually made new friends at the retreat. So in a way that passing thot of ‘maybe I can get to know more people’ really came to pass! And in future I’ll be more intentional in knowing others, because the YAYP community really is so special and precious! There were so many moments I can remember and reflect on thru out this retreat.

This retreat is poignant because it was so unpretentious; it wasn’t living on a hype and didn’t try to anyway. We probably knew of that famine, that presencelessness of God in our daily lives as well, but to hear that in a corporate setting really rung a wake up call to everyone.

Day 1 was really as many around me felt, dry and uninspired. But Day 2 came, and I really heard the most powerful sermon in YAYP for me, and then followed the breaking of hardened hearts and of healing. We were suddenly all so vulnerable towards one another, those barriers that we carried week after week didn’t apply anymore. The old order of things have passed on. In our confessions and imperfections the presence of God was so real; that liberation was unmistakable. Day 3 came with a simple call to take the step towards God, and I personally did.

As individuals, as a cell, as a community of young people, we are Liberated, so we may worship Him… the words I won’t forget! So blessed to have come to the retreat, I didn’t expect anything, but I received everything! Amen.

And yeah, so in a way, I feel that this retreat is really different from the previous few ones, even better than the Grace retreat in some way, because this time around I feel more rested and able to take the message in, the people who are running the camp are people that we know, and the things that were taught were introspective and made me consider the things I have done in the past.

During the final day I stepped forward to the altar to respond to the message of the four lepers. I felt that I really need to be closer to God to hear His voice so that I can know His direction for me. I am back from Taiwan already, I am not exactly raring or sure in doing anything related to design as a ministry. I have scattered wishes and dreams like to take care of a bunch of young people again, to lead them, to be emotionally investing in another person’s life and to just be part of the ministry of a wider body again. But I am particularly sure of how I am supposed to move on from here.

I feel that first of all, I want to get back into the radar of The Lord. That decision wasn’t all that easy because to journey with The Lord means to experience all the highs and lows that come with it.

I was thinking that I want to meet my cell kids once more, just to catch up with them, to know what is going on in their lives, to make a mental note of them and to just be connected to them once more. I am not their current CM or their mentor anymore, but I want to be able to show them that I still care about their lives and issues, that while the visiting hours are over, the doctor is always in. Something like that.

And that seems like an okay direction to be heading to right now. It sure beats doing nothing. And I intend to start from the most difficult case. Someone whom I once mentored and was so close to, but even in this retreat I was not able to talk with. I feel that these barriers have to be removed. Roadblocks will have to CONTINUE to be liberated. The liberation is not an event, it is a process and that camp, is viewed most objectively when it was seen as a starting point for greater things and not as a destination unto itself. If relationships continue to be liberated, the devil will have lesser and lesser hold on us. This process has been birthed and is destined for continuity and I will begin with the the person who really made me feel like I have to do something about it. Even for myself I will do it. And then followed by everyone else in the cell, and the 1st cell. I will try to meet everyone eventually, then I will meet everyone collectively.

I may do design. I may not. But that is no longer the question. I WILL serve God, and I will through my ministry, be a mentoring influence on lives around me. This is what the YAYP retreat has accomplished in my heart, and henceforth will never be the same again. Amen.


About jiromaiya

Largely popular with a few exceptions, he doesn't love the whole world, and doesn't try to either. A typical Singaporean epicurean, he enjoy

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