Back in September, we had our first Diamonds event of the academic year and entered a very exciting third year of Diamonds Scotland.
I have been involved with Diamonds since its beginning year and have loved the transition from young person to volunteer. As a volunteer experiencing the planning, setup, worship practice and the pre- and post- event briefings are always such a time of encouragement and a time to really press into God before the girls arrive; praying that he will totally be with us through the night.
I love welcoming all the girls and seeing how excited they are to come back, or watching how new girls become so settled by the end of the night. It is such a great opportunity for Christian and non-Christian teen girls from all over Aberdeen, the Shire, and now Glasgow and Inverness, to come together, hang out and make friends with girls they would not otherwise encounter. I really love watching girls who have never met before chatting as if they had known each other for years – I know this is helped by how relaxed and homely the events are. The Diamonds events are always so much fun and there is always something new to try out. This time it was a chocolate fountain – which was messy and super tasty! – and I think all the girls went home having had a really great evening.
In September the theme was LOST and we looked at the parable of the lost sheep, which is told in Luke 15:1-7:
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbours together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’
From this passage, I took away a powerful truth; we are lost people but God always searches for us. God wants to cleanse us of our guilt and shame, we just have to let Him find us and carry us back to the rest of the flock. His love is and will always be unconditional. We have to remember that Jesus can carry everything that we are carrying but we have to give it to him.
I think it is so reassuring to know that even though we may feel distant from Jesus at points in our lives or go through really, really hard times or we feel that God has left us; He will always come to find us, and He will be the one carrying us back to be with him. We do not have to walk behind Him or next to Him, but instead, He carries us and takes our pain and our troubles.
Hearing these biblical truths is really important for all the girls who come, and I am so glad to be part of something that has such an impact in encouraging all the girls.
Hayleigh Mathers, Diamonds volunteer.