Youth gather for weekly evening of faith, fun

Posted January 24, 2019 at 6:00 am

j A-W JAM session.tif

By Julie Ann Madden

On Jan. 16, more than 80 high school youth attended the first event planned by Akron-Westfield students who have come together to form “Jesus Alive in Me,” also known as JAM.

JAM is weekly gatherings filled with faith and fun. The Wednesday night events include hanging out with other high school youth, playing games, eating supper together and participating in an activity.

The first event was a faith presentation by RISE Ministries founder Rob Roozeboom of Sheldon with musicians Lee Stover and Ellie Waring.

Roozeboom, who has suffered from Muscular Dystrophy since he was a child, shared not only is his disease relentlessly pursuing him, taking more and more of his mobility daily, but God is just as relentless in the pursuit of his heart.

Based on the Biblical story, Jonah & The Whale, found in Jonah 2:1-9, Roozeboom told the crowd of more than 100 people that “we all have things at home relentlessly pursuing us…We can worry about our fears, our concerns, our circumstances. We can be upset because we aren’t tall enough, not fast enough, not built right. We don’t have the right color of hair. We don’t have the right home. We don’t live in the right town.”

“We can worry about all that stuff.” he said. “We can say all that is relentlessly pursuing us but there’s another side to that coin.”

“Almighty God is pursuing you,” said Roozeboom. “…God is staring you in the face saying I’m here. I love you. You matter. You are valued.”

“Isn’t it time to get out of the belly of the fish?” Roozeboom asked, explaining it took Jonah three days inside the whale before he chose to listen to God and do what God wanted. “No matter what is staring you in the face. No matter what you’re wrestling with. Just hang on — it will get better.”

“God wants a relationship with you,” he said. “He hasn’t given up on you. He doesn’t think you are worthless.”

“God has a purpose for you,” Roozeboom concluded. “Just be you and let God speak to your heart.”

Comments are closed.