A few weeks ago, I had the joy of taking my family, joining with Bayside Kids and thousands of others to the NW Nitro Conference in Seattle. We had a blast! Literally, the theme this year was Demolition! They didn’t technically blow anything up, but it was Dynamite!!!
Nitro is designed for kids and kids at heart. It’s a way to get closer to God while jumping, screaming, dancing, watching, playing and singing. Now that is an odd statement but let me explain. Nitro is two days of high energy, adrenaline pumping, organized chaos and excitement for God. I don’t know of many places that you can go and just yell at the top of your lungs in worship. In general worship services are not wild and crazy. But at Nitro they are! Wild. Crazy. Full. Open. And lets not forget, Joy-filled! Everyone smiles at some point.
Nitro is a place you can go and let yourself fall into the arms of God and just be His kid. If you are already a kid then you just get to be. No barriers. No judgement. No this or that. Just be. With God. On a massive scale. There were about 1400 people there and even though I don’t know this for sure, I think about 1,000 of them were under the age of 12.
There is magic, because the house is filled with the Holy Spirit and it shines in the faces of those around you. Have you seen unbounded joy? Have you ever been to a place where everyone smiles back at you even though they have no idea who you are? (ok sure Disneyland, but Nitro has shorter lines and no over-bearing heat). Have you seen God reflected back to you from innocence? Multiply that by 1,000 and you have one of the experiences of Nitro. God is there in a BIG way.
I cannot describe to you the words ‘big way’, it is more of an experience. You are taller than most folks there, but you feel small in a warm, comfy way because it is so BIG! The house is full. To the rafters. There is so much happening, your soul is filled, your happiness is filled in a BIG way. Everything I am putting in this blog is only a part of Nitro. There is just so much-its BIG!
Big-not just of kids, adults and God, but also inflatables. I’m not joking.
After lunch, the kids get free time and that free time is more organized chaos. It is full of free abandon, that is constantly chaperoned. We split up the kids between leaders and off we GO! Bouncy houses, slides, laser tag, rope climb, log roll-I’m telling ya, it’s all there. Free time is crazy! Free time is awesome!
There is more. Between worship, lunch, free time and smiles there are skits, prayer and a message.
This years message was all about Demolition. Knock down those walls that are keeping you from God. Why? Because He has so much to give you. There is much you can do. There is much you can receive, give and be. Demolish those walls that are holding you back. Knock em down and walk forward. Because when you do, you will know the fullness of love, joy, glory and peace. Mmm…don’t you want to live there? Sounds like a place of imagination doesn’t it. Not real, not possible. But there is such a place. It’s wonderful, exquisitely wonderful. You just start by knocking down that wall or two that is keeping you from seeing it. It’s right there, just over the wall. You don’t need a key. You don’t need a bribe. You don’t need money. Just push over that wall. Knock it down. Demolish it and walk on!
That is exactly what Nitro lets you do. You get to knock down a wall to see what you were not seeing. Then, my friends, you walk on. If you knocked down that wall during Nitro, believe me you weren’t walking. You grabbed that wrecking ball, smashed that wall and ran! Ran all the way! Woohoo! Nitro pumps you up! The excitement is touchable. Nitro is magic made real and we’ll be going back next year to get some more!
We love Nitro and can’t wait to go back! My kidlets made their “I’m gonna invite…” lists in the car on the way home. The excitement, fun and sheer joy follows you all the way home! Here it is a couple weeks past and we are still talking about it. Still excited about it! The next Nitro can’t come soon enough! Come with us next year-you’ll love it!