Sundesmos Winter Retreat Details…Don’t Miss It!!!!!

30 10 2008

Hey guys,


Drum-roll please….!  You are all officially invited to the annual Sundesmos Winter Retreat Jan. 2-5, 2009 here at the WYM Hospitality Center in Plainfield.  We’re alternating every other winter with our Winter Retreat and a Mission Trip and since we went to Alabama last January its time for our Winter Retreat.


I’m super stoked about this Retreat.  Some of us had the chance to go to the FUM Triennials this past summer and some of the comments after returning from Triennials were that sometimes its hard to figure out what it means to be a Quaker.  There are often many voices out there talking about what a Quaker is and sometimes its hard to figure it out for ourselves.  So we’re going to do just that.  This event is open to college students and young adults in WYM and our theme this year will be “What does it mean to be a Quaker?”  We’ll have special guests joining us including: C. Wess Daniels, Tom Palmer, Della Stanley-Green, Pat Byers, and Marlene Pedigo.


I’ve seen and heard a lot of talk and discussion coming from a more Liberal Unitarian perspective about what it means to be a Young Adult Quaker, but very little from those of us who feel more comfortable calling ourselves Orthodox Evangelical Christ-centered Quakers.  So that’s what we’re going to do.  Our goal will be to look at Quakerism through the Christ-centered lens of Western Yearly Meeting’s Faith and Practice, the Richmond Declaration of Faith that was recently re-affirmed by FUM, and our own post-modern worldviews. 


How many times have you had to explain who Quakers are?  Do you always know what to say?  Do you have a clear understanding of why you are a Quaker?  Or would you even call yourself a Quaker?  Do you know why you are a Christian?  And do you know how your Christian faith and your Quaker practice fit together?


Don’t miss this exciting discussion.  Oh and we’ll have some fun too…and some worship…and a service project…all jammed into a few short days.


You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. 

1Peter 2:9


I attached a copy of the most recent Western Work newsletter for you to keep up-to-date with what’s happening in WYM and I attached the brochure for our Winter Retreat.  Its only $25 if you get registered by 12/1/08 so do it now before you forget about it.


Your time in college is often when you figure out what exactly it is that you believe.  Not what your parents believe.  Not what your church believes.  Not what your friends believe.  What you believe.  Its important.


Praying for you!  Hope to see you at the Retreat. 


To the King!



Check out the brochure: Sundesmos Winter Retreat 2009 Brochure


Faith Decision

23 10 2008

Hey guys,


Just another reminder that we’ve got our Trunk-or-Treat event coming up next Friday (Oct. 31st) at Second Friends.  This is your opportunity to do ministry in WYM.  God is showing the possibility, we simply need to respond.  Contact Jessica Thornburg to help or 317-750-0152.


I’ve been thinking this week about what happens when you just don’t want to pray anymore.  What happens when it’s hard to choose to have faith?  When, for whatever reason, your head tells you to believe but your heart doesn’t want to?  I came across this devotional by Steven Case called “Faith Decision” that I wanted to share with you all.


The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle. (Matt. 17:20 MSG)


God’s blessings come from living a life of faith.  Make no mistake – God will put you to the test.  You can construct your life out of blocks balanced carefully one on top of the other, and stand on top of the pile and say, “I am a servant of God.”  But God will occasionally reach down and give the bottom block a kick.  Your life crashes.  You fall and God says, “Do you still have faith in me?  Are you still my servant?”  Or you may stand on a tower and scream, “I am your servant, God!” and get no response.  You may get nothing but silence to the point where you wonder if you’re just shouting at the wind.  Do you still have faith that God is there, and knows exactly what he’s doing?  A life of faith is not an eternal picnic.  It hurts.  It hurts a lot sometimes.  It is also capable of giving you indescribable joy.

Faith by its very nature must be tried, and the real trial of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God’s character has to be cleared in our minds.  Faith in its actual working out has to go through spells of unsyllabled isolation.  Never confound the trial of faith with the ordinary discipline of life, much that we call the trial of faith is the inevitable result of being alive.  Faith in the Bible is faith in God against everything that contradicts Him – I will remain true to God’s character whatever He may do.  “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” – this is the most sublime utterance of faith in the whole Bible. ~Oswald Chambers


Just between you and God: God can give you faith, so ask for it.  You may be tested when you least expect it.  You’re going to need all you can get.  Asking is not weakness; its strength.


Have faith. Keep faith. Use faith. Don’t lose faith. Have faith.


Praying for you this week!


To the King!


What’s Truth?

16 10 2008

Hey guys,


Hope you’re getting a chance to enjoy our brisk fall weather that has finally decided to join us.  I’m guessing that the fall is flying by for many of you like it has been for me.  I can’t believe that October is half over already!


Last weekend, while we were experiencing our balmy summer weather, we had our Fall Impact Retreat with the Young Friends of WYM.  It was a great time to have some crazy fun and look at our theme for the weekend: Truth.  In preparations I had asked our speaker to talk about post-modern relativism and its relationship to our faith.  He thought that was a little too deep but he attempted it anyway.  So I thought I’d reflect a little bit on this idea of Truth and Knowledge with this devotional.


Knowledge; just what is truth, anyway?


You may have heard this one: A man, blind from birth, comes across a man named Jesus.  This Jesus uses His own saliva to make a clay paste, rubs it on the blind man’s eyes, and tells him to wash it off in a nearby pool.  When the man does, he sees for the first time in his life.  The local leaders grill him about what happened.  Most are ticked that this healing was performed on a holy day, while a few wonder if the man named Jesus is a messenger of God.  In an uproar, they finally throw the once-blind man out.  But the man, when he meets Jesus a second time, has no doubt.  He worships Jesus. (John 9)


What does this story have to do with truth?  The religious people were frustrated by the account of the blind man.  They couldn’t fathom that a man of God, let alone a Savior, could or would perform healings on the Sabbath.  It didn’t fit with their previously established definition of right and wrong…of truth, so they rejected the evidence altogether.  The man, on the other hand, trusted his new experience.  Though it didn’t make sense according to anything he’d known before, he accepted the “impossible” and expanded his definition of truth.  So do we define truth only by what we personally experience or did the religious people have the right idea by trusting what had been written and had been practiced in the past?  Where do we find truth?  I propose that it can be both.


When we experience life-changing faith in personal experiences with Jesus Christ, we see truth.  He is the Truth.  Jesus said “I came into the world to bring everything into the clear light of day, making all the distinctions clear, so that those who have never seen will see, and those who have made a great pretense of seeing will be exposed as blind.” (John 9:39 MSG)  And yet these experiences will never contradict scripture or the spiritual truths of the past.  It’s amazing to see how Jesus fulfilled some many prophecies written about in the Old Testament.  He didn’t contradict those truths, instead He enhanced them by providing an opportunity for all people, all sinners and saints, to experience first hand God’s Truth.  The truth of His love for His children…His sacrifice of His Son for our sake.


Anyone who examines this evidence will come to stake his life on this: that God himself is the truth.  (John 3:33 MSG)


That’s Truth.


Don’t miss this great opportunity to help out at our first ever 2nd Friends Trunk-or-Treat!  This is a fun chance to minister to a low-income community in Indy.  You can get dressed up, hand out candy, play games, and have a great time with the neighborhood kids.  Contact Jessica Thornburg to help or 317-750-0152.


I’m going to start coming around for campus visits in the next few weeks.  Stay tuned for free food!


To the King!