March 03, 2017
1. Hearing a message from Rev. Telley Gadson.
At WOW17, speaker Rev. Telley Gadson had the crowd shouting “WOW!” in awe of what God has done; and what an awe-filled weekend it was. In late January, youth from the state gathered in Springfield for a WOW weekend focused on the word “Represent” and 1 Timothy 4:12. Here are five things that “represent” the wonderful WOW weekend:
Rev. Gadson took to the stage three times throughout WOW, delivering keynotes that grew in fervor and ended with praise and hallelujahs. In session one, Gadson invited everyone to catch the F.E.V.E.R - faith, energy, victory, engagement and redeemer - and to take the fever of the Holy Spirit home with them to spread and share. Later in the day, Gadson, tuning into the national conversation about facts and fake news, reminded the crowd to not miss the truth when looking at the facts; that the truth of who we are and who God says we are rings true no matter the facts of the situation.
2. Rocking out with I Am They.
After getting snowed out last year, I Am They lead WOW17 in worship throughout the weekend and put on a concert Sunday night. The folksy contemporary Christian band led the crowd in popular favorites as well as some of their own songs.
3. Learning and exploring in breakout sessions.
Conference leaders hosted a variety of in-depth options during two Saturday afternoon time slots. Rev. Melissa Dodd invited youth to explore their call to ministry. The camping ministries crew offered an hour of gaming, complete with Gaga Ball pits made from conference room tables. Big Al Cherry held attention as he shared his testimony. Rev. Angie Olsen offered conversation on being a leader for mission.
4. Sharing powerful testimonies.
During Rev. Gadson’s keynotes, she invited Youth Leadership Team members to come on stage and share their testimonies. The teens told stories of joyful realizations, hard times and questioning God - all pointing back to and recognizing the larger story He is writing for their lives and the work He is doing.
5. Busting a move with Big Al Cherry.
Intrepid favorite Big Al started each session with bumping beats and an invitation to get moving. Al taught the crowd his signature “switch it up” routine and invited several youths on stage to show off their dance moves.