By Austin Cowan
Blog Content Contributor
In February 2017, I made one of the best decisions of my life when I attended the Crosstalk Spring Retreat. What is Crosstalk you ask? Crosstalk is the college ministry of Cypress Creek Church. Meaning it is a place where young people make memories, create community and point one another toward Christ. I love this ministry because I have been bombarded by friendly people throughout the entire three-plus years I have been a part of it. Spring retreat is the biggest event we have during the spring semester and I thoroughly loved reliving my memories of it while writing this blog.
Zach Fowler is the first person in Crosstalk who became one of my bros. I met Zach on the first day of school the semester of Spring 2016. We had a digital and online media class together and sat next to each other because we recognize each other from Crosstalk but had not met each other yet. (I was pretty new in Crosstalk at that time.) I started going to Zach’s small group and eventually made it to Spring Retreat. I know it was God’s plan to have Zach and I become friends that semester because I was going through a lot at that time and Zach helped me out by pointing me back to Jesus. Zach suggested that I should attend that years Spring Retreat to get to know other people in Crosstalk more, and as the extroverted person I am, signed up right away. During that one weekend, I met many loving people and made a lot of friends. I have been to other Spring Retreat’s since then and find myself loving everyone. This last weekend I actually went on another retreat and find myself having a dance party with about 30-40 other people while singing songs from The Greatest Showman. What’s not to love about that?
Every moment of Spring Retreat is filled with activities: speakers, canoe races, ziplining, sports, etc. Crosstalk people know how to have a good time. At my first retreat, we played capture the flag, spent time swimming in a creek and even competed in a obstacle course. The obstacle course was my favorite activity because I my team consisted of my small group members, my close friends. We all knew each other’s strengths and weaknesses which helped us on the obstacle course immensely. Those of us with good balance walked the balance beam, we had the cross country guy do the running challenges and I got ketchup squirted into my face during a food challenge. Team games at Spring Retreat help people bond together just as much as the worship and small group time. Last Spring Retreat before the group would listen to a sermon from one of our pastors the worship band will play some songs for everyone to sing along too. Worshipping and praying over one another helped my bond with my friends. However, it really does not matter what people do together at Spring Retreat; strangers always end up becoming friends!
How I Have Changed
I have changed monumentally for the good since going to my first Crosstalk Spring Retreat. When Zach met me in our digital and online media class a few years back, I was just a frat boy who was consumed in anger and hurt. However, my Crosstalk friends have faithfully pointed me back to Jesus whenever life gets difficult. I am no longer mad at everything but am joyful to be alive. If anyone is going through anything difficult, let me know. Nobody deserves to be unhappy and/or depressed. If anyone wants to have their own Spring Retreat experience then go to Crosstalk on a Wednesday night at 8:00 p.m. inside the Centennial Teaching Theatre at Texas State University. Then, sign up for the next retreat and receive healing from Jesus like I have.
Featured image by Austin Cowan.