Sabbath Afternoons Transformed When UCA Students Give Back
Matt Smith, associate pastor and Upper Columbia Academy freshmen Bible teacher, has revitalized a program which is transforming the way students view Sabbath.
Smith came to UCA in 2006, bringing with him new enthusiasm for the program Sabbath Afternoon Activities. The aim of this program is to get students off campus and out into the community where they can share the love of Jesus. "Sabbath is a time for serving and helping people, as Jesus did, rather than just sitting around," says Smith. As soon as the school year was under way, Smith met with willing students to brainstorm ideas and plan some outings.
Activities this year have included raking yards in the nearby community, distributing information about an upcoming evangelistic crusade, singing for the elderly at a nursing home, shoveling snow, and feeding the homeless in Spokane, Wash. Students enjoy the program because it makes Sabbaths even more meaningful.
Smith's goals for the future are to bring people to Christ through the students’ service and to teach the youth that Sabbath can bring them joy through service to others. "The most rewarding part of SAA is seeing students grin from ear to ear because they just spent two hours with someone who lives on the street," says Smith.