Weekly bulletin article by Mike Johnson

“And the winner is…!” I and my co-MCs said that more than 100 times this past weekend at the Lads-to-Leaders convention! Each time it generated a flood of emotions from winners, family, and other competitors. The convention hall was electric with emotion and anticipation that rose and fell with the announcing of each successive new event category.

As with all competitive events, students finished 1st, 2nd, or 3rd and received trophies, plaques, medals, paper weights, or ribbons to mark the accomplishment. And, there were many who did not receive one of these but that does not mean they received nothing. Lads-to-Leaders stresses this important fact. Everyone who participates is a winner! The experience is, itself, a reward!

One of the categories that illustrates this principle well is Art Says It. There are hundreds of art projects entered into 6 categories from which first, second, and third are awarded. Since there are only 3 awarded places, many do not receive an award. That does not, however, mean they received no reward!

Each art project represented talent, time, effort, and cooperation. Each project honored all the student who did it as well as all the people who encouraged, supported, and advised in its creation. This same principle is true across the board with every single category and event.

The Lads-to-Leaders convention is the wrap up event of year-long work. The real reward comes from the year-long work not the two-day convention. Lads-to-Leaders is one way to help young people “…continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast…” (Colossians 1:23)