Helen, Matt Venn and myself set off on Monday morning with 19 members of the Youth (plus Barnaby) to Bernards Acre, the morning after the storm! So we left with prayers of anticipation that we would have electricity and for no trees to block our path, but praise God we all arrived safely and with electricity!!
For those of you who haven’t stayed at Bernards Acre, let me describe what it is like. Imagine a basic style wooden chalet type hut based on the edge of Dartmoor in a village called Belstone, nestled in a valley and sheltered by coniferous trees. There are 24 beds in small dormitory style rooms set around a large living room with a log burner. The garden leads down to a fast flowing stream backed by a picturesque amphitheatre type theme of rocks, however the rains the day before left the river looking like fast flowing rapids, which left us with a few concerns of safety which had to be addressed!
This was the 7th time Helen and I have taken a group to Bernards Acre and there is such a sense of the presence of God dwelling there, its a great environment to go deeper with God, eat, play wide games and chill out together. There is no or very little mobile phone signal, so that’s why we love it, no distractions.
During the 48 hours of our time there, we programmed in 4 sessions where we focused particularly on going deeper with God with Matt Littlewood and Joff leading us in some amazing worship. One of the things I felt God wanted to do was re-capture our attention again, so this was a strong theme of what we pursued: created in His image, our identity in Him and hearing His voice. On the Tuesday night particularly God really broke through and many of the young people freshly dedicated there lives to God, it was so amazing to see God moving and touching them in this way.
One thing I like the youth to receive is a personal prophetic word, so as Simon, Helen and Simon and Trish were helping with transport home I asked Simon to lead us in a prophetic time on the Wednesday morning. They all received a personal prophetic word which again was very encouraging to see Gods heart revealed for these guys. It was also very encouraging to see many of them moving in the prophetic gift, giving pictures, words and flowing as God was leading them.
As we were staying on Dartmoor we couldn’t leave without doing a traditional hike. So on Tuesday morning we set off on to the moor, with our packed lunches, hats, gloves and most of us waterproof boots!!!! Thankfully the weather was very kind to us, as you can see from the photos we had beautiful blue sky (for most of time anyway), and with no injuries.
So praise God for a fruitful time, thank you for everyone who prayed for us.