NTC Day 4 Wrap-Up: Battling the Elements

To say that it has been a crazy day here in Guelph would be an understatement.

DJ opened up the morning with our final teaching of the week, focusing on God’s great plan that far exceeds the world of sport. He explained how we were all created with a special set of talents – including sport, but not limited to that realm – and the importance of stewarding those gifts entrusted by our Master. He encouraged us to be responsible in faithfully using our talents, thinking about the message we will eventually have etched in our epitaphs.

And then came the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. preparations.

Cody Lind, AIA staff member at Simon Fraser University, led the group through a chapel prior to the big event, discussing several athletic and biblical heroes. Soon after, the athletes shifted into their teams, wearing their coloured bands with the upmost pride, and made their way to the first event.

While I can’t delve into too many details of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L., I will say that it has become one of, if not the most renowned events within the ministry. A truly unique experience, the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. is an intense, 24-hour sport marathon, designed to allow students to apply the principles they’ve been learning all week. Athletes must rely on the power of God and support of their teammates to endure the grueling trials they will inevitably face.

If that wasn’t already enough of a challenge, a slew of various weather conditions has been coming our way thus far. Temperatures have been dipping below 10˚C, and felt even colder than the numbers being reported. At one point, my phone declared that there were 50 km/h winds, but in all honesty, I wouldn’t be surprised to find out if there were gusts at a much faster speed.

The weather conditions are just one example of the “trials of many kinds” that the athletes have been facing, as noted in one of their memory verses (James 1:2).

But there have also been some pretty cool “Praise God” moments through these conditions. One that stands out to me occurred while participants were finishing up an indoor activity, and a torrential downpour absolutely smothered the outdoor field. This had caused me to wonder how the next (outdoor) activity would pan out; Guelph was under severe wind and thunderstorm watch at the time, causing some trepidation as to what we would have in store.

Then, in the span of about 5-10 seconds, the rain completely subsided, and the sun began poking out of the clouds. Just minutes after that, the athletes had started making their way to the next activity, without any pockets of rainfall.

Yes, the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. is not easy; dare I say, it’s actually really hard. But in those moments when all hope seems lost, God will reveal His Magnificence in the most incredible of ways. In this case, He came in the form of the sun.

Keep pressing into Him.

I’m writing this post as we close in on the 12-hour mark. It has been a long day. But this is only half-time.

By |2018-05-05T23:07:56-04:00May 5th, 2018|

About the Author:

Shayna is a fourth year student studying Communication at the University of Ottawa. As a former competitive swimmer, she spent twelve years racing anywhere between the regional and national levels, spending her final two seasons as a varsity athlete. Shayna discovered AIA during uOttawa Clubs Week in the first week of her first year, and has not looked back since attending her first meeting. Shayna has been a student leader on campus for two years and completed a summer internship with our national Communications team. She has gained a wealth of experience in the field through her school's co-op program, including her time as Swimming Canada's intern during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.