Session 4, 2015 is actually the second time I have attended Summit in Colorado. The first time, when I was 16 years old, my parents pressed me to go to Summit at the recommendation of a close family friend. Wanting to appease my parents and enjoy the two-week long “vacation” in the mountains of Colorado, I boarded a plane to Colorado Springs not knowing what was in store. What I wasn’t expecting was the two weeks to radically change my faith journey for the better.
Three years later, I decided to come back. Now 19 years old and one year of college under my belt, I definitely came to Summit this year with a different level of spiritual maturity and came more prepared for the onslaught of information than before. This second time has not disappointed me in the slightest. In fact, my time here at Summit has majorly exceeded my expectations.
In terms of academic learning, Summit offers an insanely good lineup of speakers. Literally all the speakers were engaging in a modern and intelligent way. Through listening to amazing speakers, such as John Stonestreet and Scott Klusendorf, I learned a wealth of knowledge that had major application to my life. Not one speaker that I saw shirked from a tough question; all speakers tackled issues with reasoning, intellect, and backed it all up with the Word of God. Both times that I came to Summit, speakers from around the world, many of whom are considered the leading experts in their field of study, gave presentations that were engaging and informative.
Many speakers at Summit Colorado stay at the Hotel and invest in students, such as myself, during open Q & A and individual meals. In my experiences with speakers, the extent of this interaction is rarely publicly seen.
I think the most refreshing time I experienced was the community I became apart of through my small group. Not only was it encouraging to hang out, have deep conversations, and live life together, the issues that we tackled during our small group time brought me deep encouragement and tough challenges on how to be a godly man. With our small group leader Justin’s gentle guiding, our group of five guys both encouraged and built each other up in ways all of us found to be very powerful.
Overall, I can be completely honest in saying that the academic and community side of Summit has grown me as a man and expanded my view of the cross in my life.
To sum up my time at Summit Ministries is near impossible. The things I learned and experienced within the community of godly men and women will stick with me for the rest of my life. This student ministry has played a major role in growing my leadership skills, apologetics knowledge, and most importantly, my spiritual health. This place is and will continue to hold a special place in my heart as being the environment that God used to make my faith more real and evident in my life.