Winter Retreat Recap: A Weekend of Loving the Lord and Having Fun!

Winter Retreat Recap: A Weekend of Loving the Lord and Having Fun!

This past weekend on March 1st and 2nd, a group of SNU students set out for Salyer Lake for the Winter Retreat, a retreat that was to be filled with worship and a lot of fun activities. I will give my personal account as well as the accounts of other students of the exciting events that took place during these few days.

We arrived at the lake at 5:30 to eat dinner before we started worship. On the menu were tacos and nachos with a variety of toppings. After eating dinner and having great conversation with our friends, we moved into the middle of the room for worship. This started with students leading in incredible worship songs. Afterward, the guest speaker, James Smith, came to the front and gave his sermon about the importance of loving one another by using the illustration of the Good Samaritan. Smith explained that a man was beaten badly by robbers and left on the ground to die. This man was passed by two other men, one being a priest, and the other being a temple assistant. Then, a despised Samaritan came along and tended to the hurt man. James Smith explains that this story shows us who our neighbor is, which is the person we often look past. 

After a time of silence and prayer, we moved into the activity portion of the retreat. This was highlighted by a laser tag game which involved both teams racing to capture a flag and bringing it to the opposite side’s tent. Along with the laser tag game, there were board games going on inside the lodge as well as a s’mores-making station nearby. After the evening’s events were over, the students went to their cabins for the night. While some went to bed as soon as they got back, some decided to take a hike and enjoy the nice weather.

photo by carson shirola
Photo by Carson Shirola

The next day the campers got up and went back to the lodge for breakfast. The breakfast included delicious eggs, pancakes, and sausage. After the students finished eating, there was another service in the lodge. The service followed a similar structure to the previous day’s service, capped off by James Smith talking about building our faith even though change can take time. After the service was the SNU games, a series of smaller games that would crown one champion. Some of the games included a laser tag free-for-all, a cornhole throw, a pirate ship game, as well as many others. Eventually, one person, Karston Keene, was crowned the champion. The games were followed by lunch, which included chili dogs and french fries. After lunch, the students helped clean up the lodge, and then everyone

photo by josh mora
Photo by Josh Mora

headed back to SNU.

I asked a handful of students about their experience at this Winter Retreat. Commenting on this, Van Taylor said, “This was such a powerful and memorable weekend. I grew closer to so many people through worship, prayer, and fellowship, and I just felt overwhelmed by the peace of God.” 

Seth Spruiell also adds his testimony, saying, “I had a blast at Winter Retreat this year! From getting close to winning the games to enjoying fellowship with my friends, it was a great getaway from the stresses of school and a great time to just be disconnected for a while. The messages were great all weekend, and it felt like the mood created was one of love, just like James Smith talked about. Overall, it was a great time that did an amazing job of mixing fun with some impactful messages!”

As Spruiell states, this Winter Retreat was a great time for students to have fun and hear some impactful messages. If you did not go this year, I, along with several other students, would recommend that you join us next year!


Featured Photo by Carson Shirola