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  • Writer's pictureJonny Nelson

Summer Wake Recap

As a kid I remember standing on the dock watching the cool wakeboard boats out on the lake. I longed for the opportunity to go out and ride, but no matter how much I smiled and waved, there I was, stuck on the dock by myself. This summer JSAW provided 120 riders the opportunity to get on the boat and go ride. 1 Peter 4:10-11 says, "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms." Over the summer JSAW's staff and volunteers invested just over 375 hours on 3 different boats transforming action sports culture.

JSAW hosted camps to teach riders at different skill levels. From someone just learning how to get up and ride, to landing flips our coaches serve and offer encouragement to help riders progress. One first time rider got his wakeboard on and after we helped him into the water, he became overcome with fear. Choking back tears JSAW's coach helped him out of the water offering him loads of encouragement. The next day he came back and after a quick coaching session on the boat, he was determined to overcome his fear. JSAW's coach helped him get up on the wakeboard his second try and he absolutely fell in love with riding. He literally rode 4 laps around the lake and went 3 more times. His confidence and joy exploded that day. One of the highlights of the summer was seeing the faces of kids when they learned something new for the first time. They have so much excitement, joy and energy shared.

This puts our coaches into a unique role in a riders life. They have an incredible opportunity to share their faith and invite riders to JSAW's small group Bible studies that happen every week throughout the summer.

This summer JSAW hosted 3 weekly small groups on 2 different lakes. One week at small group we were having a discussion about baptism and what it means. A couple of the riders shared that they were saved because of their baptism when they were younger. Another rider argued that he was saved because of his faith in Jesus' death and resurrection and that baptism was a symbol, publicly declaring his own faith in Jesus. The debate was loving but heated. I was most impressed by how each of the riders shared scripture verses to support their position. They were shocked that there were such differing beliefs and that they themselves felt misunderstood. We concluded with the importance of studying God's word everyday to know what we believe and why... and how it impacts the way we live each day!

JSAW's wake program is transforming action sports culture by making riders into disciples. Serving 120 riders through weekly small groups, camps and lessons is no small feat and I'd like to thank everyone who was a part of making this summer happen.

I'd like to thank our volunteers who gave of their time to coach and drive the boat. They often don't even get time to ride themselves, but they are just happy to be there and serve the riders on the boat. I'd also like to thank the donors who sponsored our 3 weekly small groups on the lake and the donors who provided the 3 boats for the riders this summer. I'd also like to thank MN Inboard and Phase 5 Surfboards for hooking up JSAW's program with the best equipment. Without each of you this program could never happen. Thank you!

PS - JSAW's 2023 Malibu Wakesetter LSV 23 is now for sale: Click here!

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