Spiritual Development of the Worship Team
during a Summer Service Work Retreat
Our time of service together is not just about the work you will do to help people. As we serve together, we want all that we do to be an act of worship – mowing a lawn, talking with a widow, sharing a meal with a child, playing volleyball – all that we do is worship. And this is why we call you a Worship Team. We are worshippers as we offer our acts of service unto the Lord.
I urge you, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your spiritual act of worship. Romans 12:1
Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17
We structure Summer Service to accomplish this objective:
- Morning devotional time with Good Works staff/interns. This time is intended to help us see our service as an act of worship. The focus is educational about how God views poverty and the poor. On Monday, a GW staff will lead our conversation. Tuesday through Thursday this is led by the summer interns. On Friday, we would like to have your group lead our devotional time. This could involve something you have learned about service with people struggling with poverty before your time with Good Works or during your Summer Service week. We want to learn from you.
- Participation in Timothy House evening activities. The Timothy House serves people who are struggling with poverty and have found themselves homeless. On Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, two members of your group (two adults or one adult and one teen) will participate in the evening meal and activities that follow. They will go to the Timothy House with one of the summer interns, who will provide an introduction to you of who is living in the house.
- Use of Carter Cabin. We really want to see the members of your group use our retreat cabin, to help you get times of “holy rest” and to provide a time for prayer and Bible reading in solitude.
- Evening Gathering. Beginning at around 9:15 each evening you will gather for worship and reflection. Although the interns will initiate this time, you have the flexibility to put into place elements that you feel are important. This could include singing, group Bible reading, reconciliation among group members, testimony, or helping to process the events of the day. If the weather is nice, this can be around a campfire or you can use the amphitheater stage on the property. You can also use the Hope Center.
- The Good Works TALK. Most often this is the time that Keith Wasserman will be with your group, discussing how Good Works started as well the philosophy and vision that guide us in the work that we do today. If Keith is not able to do this, one of the other staff will share this story and their own journey with Good Works.
- Evangelism. We recognize that not all the members of your group that come to serve with us will be Christian. We encourage this because we want to create a context in which the Christian and the not-yet Christian can interact. It is our desire that something will happen to cause that individual to begin this relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ. We will also be seeking to make the most of the opportunities that God provides to lead someone into this relationship, but to do so with respect and permission.
The evenings (prior to Evening Worship) with Good Works are set aside for your use. We encourage you to develop activities that will balance the work of the day with recreational times that bring the group together again. Basketball, volleyball and a children’s play area are available to your group. We also have 2-3 miles of hiking trails on the property. Some of these trails are easy walks on flat ground. Others are in the woods with some steep climbs. It is a beautiful area and we encourage your group to take advantage of these.
On Friday evening we will lead the Closing Session. The intention here is to help your group process what happened during the week. Your involvement in this is critical and you should speak with the staff or the intern beforehand to express your priorities. This is a great opportunity to speak a word into the lives of the group and begin to have them think about what they will do with the experience after the get back to their home.
In summary, we are seeking to provide a discipleship experience for all who are involved in Summer Service Work Retreats. At times this can be quite difficult. But discipleship is not suppose to be easy. It is to be a catalyst for growth.