You might be wondering what the MYC is; it is Mid Year Conference. MYC is the annually event held by UNSW Campus Bible Study (CBS) that has been running for more than 20 years, if I am not mistaken. MYC is one of the spectacular events held by CBS because lots of students will be taking part and not rarely change the direction of their life after knowing ‘the truth of life’. I was blessed became someone who could participate in. However, that was still my first MYC and hopefully not the last. Before going back to Indonesia next year, I wish can join this event for the second time and probably will be the last MYC for me.
There were around 450 participants taking part in this event that was running for 5 days, 21-25 July 2008 in Richmond, NSW. These participants consisted of several groups under the Campus Bible Study (CBS) and individuals. To make it clear, it might be better if i explain about the CBS. the CBS is one of the Christian fellowships in UNSW. In order to accommodate all Christians in this uni, CBS spread upon all faculties so that every faculty has their own fellowship. Besides in each faculty, CBS also tries to facilitate overseas student fellowships united in what is called Focus. Focus again consists of four groups which are: Pelita (where i join in), Mandarin, Cantonese, and IBF. All the participants attending this MYC was from faculty groups, overseas groups, and individuals, but again they all are under the CBS.
Honestly, I didn’t want to attend this MYC when a friend in Pelita invited me. Besides the cost was not cheap (particularly for students), 5 days event would be very boring, i thought. This MYC is just like a ‘retreat’ in Indonesia, however, retreats that I’ve ever experienced were usually only in 3 days or on weekends. However, after considering many things, I decided to participate. By joining it, i hope I could build better relationship with friends in Pelita.
In the very early morning on 21th July, we, Pelita’ers, gathered in Central Station as announced. Because we had to catch a train to reach Richmond, every body had to be responsible to come on time. Fortunately, most of the pelita’ers kept their promises although there were some people coming late. While we were waiting for them, some volunteers bought tickets either for those who had been there or who were still on the way. As usual, it was very crowded in the station. Ticketing looked very busy and people should make a long queue to buy tickets.
The train was not as full as we Imagined. Yups, we travelled the other way around of the peak traffic. In that morning, most of people travelled from suburb to CBD while we were from CBD to suburb. So, everyone of us could get a seat without competing with other people like the phenomenon that usually happens in every peak hour. It took around 1 and half hours to reach Richmond. But it didn’t feel long because some people were busy with their interests; some were chatting, some playing games, and some even sleeping. I myself chose to sit and enjoy the beautiful view of outside.
After reaching Richmond, we were picked up by buses taking us to the hostel. that was the beginning of this memorable experience,,,
The schedule was very full and compact. In the morning after breakfast, we got seminar, bible study, and reflection. After lunch, we had electives, and after dinner talks and question time. Simply, daily activities were from 7.30 am – 11.00 pm nonstop. However, there were free times after lunch for 1 and half hours to be used to play games or take rest. If you don’t enjoy your days, you will definitely feel exhausted and want to go home!! Instead, I very much enjoyed my time, just like others, and felt time run very fast.
The Topic of this MYC was ‘so you think you can worship?’ therefore, all activities talked about ‘worshipping God’. One thing that I like most from this MYC is that activities whether they are seminars, bible studies, talks, etc, relate and support one another. So, you won’t get lost. Things that we learnt from seminars and bible studies, for example, would be explained in more detail and deeper in talks, and vice versa, things that we got from talks could be searched in the passages of the scripture in the seminar times. Therefore, more and more new knowledge i got from every activity. One more thing, if we still got some questions, we could rise them in question sections that would be leaded by experienced full-timers. Very very well scheduled!!
There are 5 things that I learnt from this MYC about worshipping God. First, instead of questing what worship is and why we worship Him, we should understand first about who we worship, in other words, Who God is. I was reminded that He is the Creator who does not only create and leave the creations, but also takes care and loves His creation. He is loving but at the same time is just. The One who doesn’t promise His people to live without suffering and sadness but The One who promises that the world is not a home for His people. The second thing is ‘we are failed worshippers’. God is Holy we are sinful, so we cannot enter the presence of God by ourselves. Only ‘the True Worshipper” who is Jesus that can be a perfect sacrifice for us to make us able to come to God to worship Him. Remember how Israel should sacrifice unblemished animals to worship God. But in Jesus, it all changed. Jesus’s blood is once for all so we don’t need to sacrifice any imperfect sacrifices anymore to worship God. That’s why we are not under the law but under the grace which is Jesus Christ. The third thing is ‘a heart of worship’ that does not only involves emotion but also mind. Simply, all of our life including our body, emotions, feelings, thoughts, and mind should worship Him. We cannot rely on our feeling to worship God. When we feel dry spiritually, no other things we can do without coming to Him and listening to Him though the scripture and praying. The Spirit of God will be always with us. The fourth thing is ‘how to worship Him’. In this part, we searched in more detail about how in our daily life we worship Him. How do we behave and how do we consider God more than earthly treasures. Do we serve God or money? moreover, the faithful worshippers are not those who know about the Law of Christ, but those who do them. The last thing is ‘call to worship’. This part pressed that this life is not our life but God’s life because God can take our life anytime anywhere. So, the only thing that we should do with this God’s Life is to bring glory to God the owner of life.
Time really run very fast, 5 days seems a day. With the reluctant heart, we the participants had to go back. what we had learnt is not easy to put into practice. We know that we are weak, but for sure, God will always help us to be better people to grow in Him.
After final talks, we prepared everything and got into the buses that took us to the Richmond station. Because too many participants, we were divided into two groups. I and several friends of Pelita were in the first group. Because I was late to get the ticket, I was separated from friends and sit in the different coach. However, that was the right time do the final reflection of all that I’ve experienced and learnt in those 5 days.