Reboot 2014 – The Report

For those of you who haven’t heard, ‘Reboot’ is an apologetics training event for teenagers.

(yep, you read that right!)

You can find out more about Reboot – who runs it, etc – here.

(And if ‘apologetics’ sounds like a foreign language, check out the definition here)

The lowdown:

Myself and two of the teenagers from The Bay (Katie and Bex) went along with some our friends from Emmanuel.

The day was pretty full on!  It consisted of:

  • talks from the front on some big questions of life;
  • testimonies;
  • Q and A sessions (both from the front and in small groups);
  • seminars;
  • plenty of time to browse a MASSIVE bookstall;
  • opportunities to ask burning questions (e.g. via text, or twitter, or good ol’ fashioned paper and pen…);
  • an opportunity to have a go at answering questions;
  • lots of singing;
  • lots…and lots…and lots…and lots (you get the picture) of sweets, doughnuts and all kinds of sugary goodness.  And tea/coffee for the teenagers…I mean, leaders.

The questions:

You name it, it was asked!

The benefit:

What was so encouraging about the day, from my personal perspective was this: over 700 teenagers (yep, you read that right!) voluntarily giving up an entire Saturday to find Biblical answers to the tough questions they have, and their friends have.

Our friends, our family, our society – they all have questions.  WE have questions! One of the most valuable lessons I’ve ever learnt (far too late in life) is not to hide my questions from the sovereign Creator of the universe – but to go to Him with them.  Amazing to see so many teenagers aware of that truth now.

The feedback:

You’ve heard enough of my feedback.  More importantly, this is what the girls had to say:

The best bit?

  • Freedom of being able to go up to pray
  • Everyone open about talking about their faith
  • Other Christians my age
  • Enjoyed the music and having so many people singing
  • Intimidating at first!
  • Michael Ramsden – great speaker, straight to the point with some good examples
  • Liked the atmosphere, felt very open and welcoming
  • Generally very encouraging
  • A nice place to be

Would you go next year / how would you encourage others to go?

  • YES!
  • Lots of talks you’d find interesting even if you’re not a Christian
  • Encouraging as a Christian
  • Good music
  • Loads of people same age
  • Free food!
  • Very helpful
  • I’d talk about the topics from this year
  • You can ask any question you like

The most encouraging bit?

  • Story about the archbishop in Africa who continued to preach even though he was being beaten – and when his life was about to be taken, he prayed, and his captors fled for no ‘apparent’ reason
  • Knowing that everyone who was there WANTED to be there
  • Helped remind me why I believe the gospel

A takehome quote or memory?

  • “When you break God’s law, you prove God’s law and break yourselves and others in the process” – Michael Ramsden
  • “God wants nothing more than to be in relationship with you”
  • “Don’t reject the real just because you’re disappointed with the fake” – Michael Ramsden (e.g. don’t reject Jesus just because Christians mess up or false Christianity / other religion lets you down)
  • The talk about OT / NT “contradictions”
  • People’s enthusiasm – how much they love God and care about the gospel
  • Relationships seminar
  • It was all amazing and really helpful!
  • Vince Vitale – how can we be sure God exists – universe is fine tuned to life, just right for us to exist

Anything else?

  • Always answer a question with a question!
  • Shouldn’t argue the gospel for the sake of debate
  • Surprising the amount of people who turned up
  • Great to know that so many other Christians have the same questions as me
  • Asking questions is a good thing
  • It was way better than my expectations
  • Helped me think about how you spread the gospel to others
  • Can’t wait for next year!

The conclusion:

So, there you have it!  Please, be encouraged.  And, please, continue to pray for our teenagers and young people.

And if you fancy some of that fun yourself – have no fear – I understand that an adult’s version will be held in 2015…watch this space!