2020 FIELD Blast has been canceled due to COVID-19 - we cannot wait for 2021 

Building Leaders and Sharing Talents (BLAST) is an event through which talents and leadership skills of youth are developed, encouraged, and used for Jesus Christ. The process begins in a local church setting, where youth are encouraged in their special gifts and abilities, continues through district BLAST events, and extends to the field event held each year at MVNU. BLAST is more than an annual field event; it’s a year-long emphasis on talent/leadership development at every level.

Personal development is an important part of BLAST, yet for who we can be for Christ, not for personal gain. Our talents are an indication of His grace, not our own “special-ness” (Romans 12:3), and are designed to help us serve Him and others. They unify us, and help both us and those we serve to mature in the faith. God expects us to develop our talents and gifts so that we become the best we can be, with His power flowing through us. There is no room in His kingdom for half-heartedness in the cloak of false humility; we must reach for the stars, knowing the One who made them!

 Training for leadership is a second vital aspect. In preparation through discipline and effort, in using their talents publicly, and in working with others in group or team settings, a teenager develops leadership skills that can be channeled in a variety of ways both in the present and the future. Their presentation may not always be great by certain standards, but what happens inside of them as they use their talents is! Whether it’s singing, public speaking, creative arts, math, preaching, Bible quizzing, or team/individual sports, they develop leadership abilities which “plug in” to the church for years to come.

Competition is part of the BLAST experience, but within a Christian understanding. When Christians compete, they compete against what they know they can do. When I achieve my best, I am a winner. Competing helps me work harder than I might on my own. A Christian attitude toward competitors should be one of companionship and gratitude, helping each other become better. If my competitor wins the award, I rejoice as part of his or her victory, having helped perform at a higher level; if I receive it, I feel the same about him or her.

Finally, participation should be validated at every level. Local churches should provide opportunities for teens to share their talents whether in church services or local events. Districts should organize their own BLAST events as significant times of sharing, emphasizing that everyone who participates is a winner, not just those who advance to the next level; a culmination of all that has happened in local NYI’s, not just a time to see who qualifies for field BLAST. May local and district youth be better equipped to make a difference in our world through our year-long efforts to build leaders and share talents!

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