So I had the third lock-in for the year at Redeemer Lutheran Church and it was something else!
It was not a bad night, on the contrary it was a very reflective night. We started the evening at 9pm and got the 7th and 8th grade students engaged in a game of four square, only to realize 20 minutes later that they were bored with it. Then we entered into the "rules" part of the evening and that took maybe two minutes before they were bored with it. And then we dove into baking cookies.
We made a game out of it, split into three teams and whoever got the batch mixed and the first tray in the oven first won. Just won. No prize here. Once all the batter was mixed, the students got bored and then invaded the gym area. Some went to grab the wheel chairs from the narthex, others raided the basketball closet to shoot hoops and others just ran around and did what kids do best.
I was glad to have some helpers to keep an eye on folks cause I cannot be every place at once. This craziness is how the first three hours of the evening went. There were some organized activities but for the most part it was hard to keep their attention for more than 20 minutes. Then I put in Star Wars. And that was a good transition because it got the kids calmed down and focused. Again, ten minutes later kids were roaming. But at least they weren't going crazy and had great respect towards the giant glowing screen.
As I got closer to the morning, I could see the end. I was super tired and my feet were really sore (no thanks to breaking in a new pair of shoes). It got me thinking... life is a lot like a lock-in. We are super excited and ready to do everything when we are younger. Then later on, we are ready to settle down and watch a movie. In the life analogy, the movie is middle ages when your kids are starting to become independent and even moving out of the house.
And then as it gets closer to the end you get more and more tired and weary. Things that happen tend to irritate you with more ease. That is the one scenario if you do not have the hope that we have in eternal life. If the lock-in has a Christ-centered focus then those leading it will never grow irritated but always live grace-filled lives. If your life has a Christ-centered focus, you will never grow irritated or tired or weary when you grow old. Christ will give you strength and He will carry you up on wings like eagles.
My last analogy, eternal life is a lot like the day after a lock-in. Sleep. It is so glorious after a lock-in and you can never have enough of it. The only difference is that in Heaven we will not be sleeping, we will be praising God for ever and ever and it will be so glorious after this long stretch of night on earth.
Pray you all have glorious sleep someday!