How Xpression Shaped me - Kiara Mclelland
At my first ever Xpression in 2014, I became a Christian and I think this is one of the many reasons Xpression and all those involved in it have been such a major part of my life. I have now been part of Xpression teams for four years and have loved it every single time. Looking back there are a few lessons I have learnt which particularly stand out to me.
The first lesson comes from my very first Xpression, the year between leaving Clounagh Junior High School (the best of the three) and moving to PC. My time at Clounagh had been a roller coaster, to say the least, and I was as far from God as you could ever imagine. Xpression came along and God and Christianity were the last things on my mind, I was just there for a few days of banter. For years I had seen people rocking around in these black t-shirts, having a bit of craic and that’s what I wanted, but boy, I was in for SO much more. God showed me that week that His grace forgives all, and I mean all. No matter who you are or what you’ve done, at the foot of the cross we are all equal. It took me so long to accept this, at times we can all feel completely unworthy of God’s grace, but we must remember that it forgives all.
The second lesson is something I’ve noticed increasingly throughout my years of Xpression and that is the importance of teamwork. Anyone that knows me will certainly back me up in saying I like to be in control but Xpression has reminded me that it’s impossible to do it alone. There is very good reason that we are all split into teams that can go out into the communities together and this was very evident during Garvaghy Kids Club last summer. We had one day where our usual building was being used so instead of having no kids club we decided it would be a good idea to hold it in the Peoples Park. For any of you that have never been to the Peoples Park, it is very large with no real way to keep 30+ kids in one place and just to add another potential disaster into the mix there is a lovely stream going through the middle. This is where teamwork comes into play, the G-Road teams are always the best and this has never been truer than that day. It would have been impossible to do it alone, we had people doing kids activities, others making sure no one left the designated area and another few chasing the ones that still attempted to. It most certainly did not run like clockwork, but no kid made it to the stream, so I count that as a success. Through the team, God showed me that no matter what you are doing, teaching the Bible story or simply ensuring that a kid doesn’t drown, it’s all for His kingdom.
The final lesson is a follow on from the last, and that is that we’ve ultimately got to rely on God. Especially through my two years of having the privilege to help with Xpression committee, I’ve learnt that it would simply not happen without God’s hand above it all. Going into the week we often have no idea how some things are going to work, or if in fact, they will work at all, but somehow, by the grace of God, it does. When so many people are willing to put their trust in God and rely on Him amazing things happen. Throughout the years, Xpression has impacted so many lives within our community and that is most definitely not all the work of Xpressioners, but God working through them and showing us His way. Relying on God completely can be tough at the easiest times but Xpression has truly shown me that it is the only way to live your life and share Jesus with others.
I hope that Xpression continues to teach me many lessons in the coming years and, if you too maybe want to learn a few things why don’t you sign up to help this year? We’d love to have you.