NTC Day 5 Wrap-Up: Smells Like Team Spirit

May 5, 2018

Picking up from last night’s post, the middle portion of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. is one I always find the most challenging. It seems to be a time when team morale reaches a new low point, almost as if our attitudes and energy sink with the sun.

I think it’s important to realize that no team dynamic is ever going to be completely void of hiccups or tension, especially when spending 24 hours with competitive athletes. (For the record, I would certainly include myself in that mix of people who can get easily agitated during those times.)

It’s when those tougher moments come to fruition, though, that I find it very revealing of a person’s character.

Now, I’m not saying that every concept should be nailed down all the time, and losing your temper or failing to apply those principles equates to an unsatisfactory performance. Not at all. If that were the case, I would be doing the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. year after year and continuously fall short.

People are people. People make mistakes. People don’t always meet expectations. But at the end of the day, people need people who are chasing the same perfect standard set by Jesus.

Which brings me to Golgotha.

Translated from the Aramaic word for “skull” and referencing the site of Jesus’ crucifixion, Golgotha is also the name of the final event of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. It provides an opportunity for every participant to physically and spiritually lay down their cross and their entire being before God. It was breathtaking to witness people so visibly encountering God in such a delicately personal way, combined with the accomplishment of finishing the S.P.E.C.I.A.L.

That said, the event didn’t separate people in their individual journeys, but brought together every person and every team to honour and celebrate their presence. What transpired in that event was the most incredible display of team unity and support that I’ve witnessed throughout this entire week. I can hardly put the experience to any words, never mind words that would actually do it justice. I think the tears that consistently slid down my cheeks can vouch for that.

It was a powerful close to a powerful week. Some lives may have been radically transformed, whereas others may still be in a place of searching. And both are amazing, extremely important touchstones in one’s spiritual journey. Let’s just go back to that one word – journey. Let these moments not become a random, one-off experience restricted to the dates and locations of this camp, but something that can be nurtured to help people grow into the person God made them to be.

Wins and losses do not define who you are. ‘Soul-crushing’ does not have to be ‘spirit-crushing.’ Regardless of your emotional state, God is always present so that your faith does not fluctuate, but can rest in knowing who you are and Whose you are.

This is why AIA loves NTC so dearly.

For now, I just want to show you my gratitude for making it this far into my posts, and for choosing to follow along with these updates. I hope you have gained some intrigue and insight into the incredible events that happen during this incredible week. NTC has impacted my life in ways I could not have imagined, and writing down my experiences has been an interesting challenge, but nonetheless an absolute pleasure and joy.

Thank you. 🙂

Written By: Shayna Lewis


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