7000 teenagers, lots of tents, thunder lightning and floods, great camping food, destroyed marquees and a whole lot of worshipping our sovereign God. It can only be Newday! Last week Verve youth group (part of Gateway Church Poole) travelled to Norwich showground to join with other teenagers from around the country and even greater from other nations.
Newday is Newfrontiers big youth event. This year was the eighth year that it has run, and God's hand has been upon it. Every year it seems to get bigger! I have gone for the previous four years as a member of Winchester Family Church's youth group, but this year was a big change as for you first time I was a leader!
For leaders, the weeks leading up to Newday are a mix of emotions. You are excited to see God transform the young peoples lives but are also anxious about the pranks that they are planning. Being one of the worst youth to ever grace the Newday campsite, it would have been justice for the youth I was in charge of to terrorise me. But God is gracious and he gives us what we don't deserve!
The Gateway Church group had a great time. We had late night fashion shows, late night farting competition (...leaders...), water fights, water slides with tuna on them (thanks Elsie Barnett) and morning sing songs. Camp morale was very high! I must say, this year was my favourite year of Newday purely because everyone got along, we had a great time together and you could truly see that we are a family.
Newday is well known for its bible teaching. As ever it was of the highest standard. Stef Liston kicked the conference off. He is really becoming one of the best preachers around. The man just oozes passion and humility. We were also blessed by having Steve Chong join us from Sydney Australia. He spent four mornings preaching to us and served us brilliantly.
If you have never been to Newday I would highly recommend it. Even if you go as a server, the experience is worth it. This may be the last year I go. We shall see. Thank you God for giving us Newday and for using it to raise the next generation of disciples and thank you Newday for giving us great memories and opportunities to meet with God.