By Paige C. Roper
In an effort to share God’s Word with their youth, the Canaan-Sand Hill Charge launched a Youth Bible Study program. Now in its second year, the program is bearing much fruit.
In the Christian race, it seems obvious certain winners should advance through the finish line. However, in Ecclesiastes 9:11, the author states, “The race is not given to the swift or the strong.” When we ponder these words, we are left to wonder who will rise to be victorious in a world inundated with uncertainties. In times perplexed by unpredictability, United Methodists of diverse backgrounds have one who is faithful, unchanging and sure—God and his eternal Word/son, Jesus the Christ (John 1:1; Hebrews 4:12). As Jesus said in Matthew 24:35, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”
As God’s Word will never cease to exist, the Canaan-Sand Hill Charge embarked upon a mission to give God’s Word as spiritual food that will never spoil or perish. It is the goal of the charge to help young persons develop the perseverance needed to finish life’s race as a victor in a world where true winners are not always evident.
To share God’s word with their youth, the Canaan-Sand Hill Charge started a Youth Bible Study Program in 2022. Participants in grades six to 12 just completed their second year.
Students met monthly for seven months from March through September 2023. Their studies focused primarily on topics outlined in Lifeway’s Gospel Foundation Series and were centered on Old Testament accounts concerning creation, the Abrahamic covenant, Joseph’s adversity, the exodus story as well as God bringing his people into the promised land of Canaan.
Students culminated their studies with a Youth Bible Study Quiz Bowl on Sunday, Sept. 24. This was a fun-filled event held in Canaan United Methodist Church’s Family Life Center, and it gave participants an opportunity to demonstrate their learning, comprehension and application of biblical knowledge and content.
A total of 55 questions were asked from various categories reflective of subjects taught during Bible study, and after a contested battle of brilliant minds, the Canaan-Sand Hill Charge’s Green Team emerged as the clear winner.
The Green Team comprised the following members: Ethan Mitchell, Franklin Fogel, Isabella Dos Santos and Gavin Spells. Ethan Mitchell, the son of Gervis and Kwamina Mitchell of Canaan, and the grandson of the Rev. Mark D. Mitchell, an ordained UMC elder and current pastor of the Lake City Circuit, was the grand-prize winner who answered the most questions correctly.
Although every race and competition has champions who emerge, members of the Canaan-Sand Hill Charge congratulated all student participants for a job well-done. The charge considers every young person a winner who is willing to undertake a disciplined and in-depth study of the Holy Bible. Every parent, guardian or mentor who has supported them in doing this is also considered a winner.
For God said in Isaiah 55:11, “When my word leaves my mouth, it will not return to me void, but it will accomplish all that I desire and shall prosper wherever I send it.”
Knowing that God’s word reaps success, let us continue to plant its seed into our children, and let us continue to read, study and apply it to our daily lives as well.