We got back tired but very blessed, from our annual vacation on Deer Island with our Up Town/
street hope friends. The theme was “Child of the One true King” based on the song by Matthew West. The song begins by reflecting on the regrets and defeats that we can so easily let define us. “These are the voices these are the lies.” sings West . He continues “I have believed them for the very last time!” He goes on to aver that our identity is found not in “the wreckage” behind but in our relationship with God through the finished work of Christ. We are children of the one true King! During our study times together we looked at “Who I Am in Christ”. At one of our bonfires we had opportunity to write out and burn some of the lies we choose to no longer believe. It was a powerful time!
As important and powerful as these ‘spiritual times’ were the real miracles happen in the spontaneous events. There is so much laughter on our trips. A common complaint is “My stomach hurts from all this laughing!” The Bible tells us that a “A merry heart does good like a medicine.” God had a potent prescription for us these past few days. One of my friends asked me if I’d ever heard of “Holy Laughter” and when I said that I was familiar with the idea, she said “I think that is what I experience here on Deer Island.” I had not thought of that way but I believe she had really hit the nail on the head. So many of us have had very sad pasts and more than a few have been sufferers of depression. I wonder if our healing times on Deer Island aren’t God’s way of restoring ‘the years that the locust have eaten’.
As usual we ate really well (is it possible to eat too well?) Three of our number were with us for the first time. They had been a bit fearful and hesitant about coming but as we piled on the ferry to come home there was complete agreement that this was a most blessed time.