We're home from camp, and what a great week it was! We got home Friday afternoon, absolutely worn out, and I immediately started on laundry. I got quite a bit done, but it's built back up again now, of course. Today has been a slow start, but after I get this post done it will be back to the laundry, cleaning (how does a house get into a huge mess when you aren't even home?), cooking, and getting ready for school to start again. The fun never ends! ;)
We had about 45 teens at camp this year. I had 7 girls in my cabin, all 13 years old or thereabouts. I was pleased to find them all sweet-spirited girls. I didn't have a minute's problem with any of them. I did have to ask for a change of tops for a couple of them, but they changed with a sweet attitude and were fine after that. Each cabin had a work time each day. My least favorite was cleaning the showers, and I think that might have been the girls' least favorite too! LOL But they worked hard and we managed to get them done with a little bit of "ewww" and "yuck" thrown in. I finally said, "No more ewwws! Just get it done!" Our other work details were just helping with kitchen/dining room cleanup, so that wasn't too bad.
The thing I love about our camp here is the sense of relaxation. It's a lot of work for the adults, yes; but we aren't driven. At other camps I've gone to, there is constant activity every minute of every hour. Bad attitudes abound because it's so driven. Here it feels more like a family environment. Our days are structured, but there's plenty of time between activities, there's a mandatory rest time in the afternoon, and there's a free time scheduled after the rest time, when the kids mingle among themselves, playing games or just talking. All of this time is supervised by adults, so there's no wandering off to trouble, but it's not so structured it's overbearing. Even with all that free time, there are 2 hours in the afternoon of structured team games, one team game in the morning after chapel, and then another hour of team games at night after chapel. There's also Happy Hour, a time after chapel for skits and maybe a game, which is a favorite time for everyone - much craziness ensues during Happy Hour! So plenty of structure, but some free time too, which makes for a very enjoyable week for adults and kids alike. We counselors get to know each very well during the week as we visit together, and that's a treat for us. Many of us are pastors and pastors wives, so we are usually so busy with our ministries or live so far away that we rarely get to visit. Camp is when we can do that - praying together, playing with the kids, going to chapel together, and fellowshipping during various free times.
The chapel times are the most important times of camp. This year, Pastor Greg Adams, youth pastor of Greater Portland Baptist Church, was our guest speaker. He brought his wife and two youngest daughters with him. During morning chapel, we had split sessions, with Mrs. Adams teaching the girls. She was a blessing to me, and I'm not even a teenager! At night, Pastor Adams preached messages that focused on commitment to Christ and holy living. It was great to see teens pouring out the doors of the chapel to pray and make commitments to serve the Lord more. I prayed with one girl who wanted to become more consistent with her devotions - what better place to start a closer walk with the Lord?! Wes and I are thrilled at the growth of one of our teen boys. He gave testimony of how the Lord has helped him learn how to be a real Christian in the past couple of years, and how he would like to go to Bible college when he finishes high school! He loves going to camp, and each year he has gone has shown more and more growth in his life. We praise the Lord for His work in this boy's life!
The best thing I have to report from camp is that three teens were saved during the week! One of them was a girl in my cabin. This was her first time at camp; she had come with a friend. All week I prayed for this girl, and on Thursday, Pastor Conner had us ask the Lord for a way to be a help to one camper. I thought of this girl, and asked the Lord to give me a chance to talk to her privately. I was really a little unsure that I'd get that chance, because she was always with her friend. But on Thursday afternoon, when the bell rang for snack shop, all of my girls swooshed out of the cabin . . . except this one girl! I am not always very quick-thinking, so I started down the field to the snack shop when all of a sudden it hit me that she was alone! I could talk to her! I hurried back up to the cabin before she could change her mind and come out, and started talking to her a bit. I finally asked if she'd heard of "being saved" and was she saved? She said she wasn't sure she was saved, and didnt' really understand what that meant. It just took me a second to get my Bible off my bed and begin to show her how she could be saved. After about 20 minutes, she looked at me and said she wanted to ask the Lord to save her, and she was sweetly saved right there on her bed! What a blessing! It never ceases to thrill me when I have the opportunity to show someone how they can know for sure they are going to Heaven!
So that was our week, in a very small nutshell, although it looks like a huge long story. I could go on and on! I did find out that a pastor friend reads my blog, because he made fun of my menus! LOL Pastor Hallmark, I'll have to write up a good one just for you!
It's a busy two weeks till we leave for California. The week after we get back, I plan to start homeschool again for my two younger kids, so I'm busy planning for that and getting everything in order so that all we have to do is start. So the busyness of life continues. Isn't God good to give us a lot to do? LOL I don't like to be bored, and this summer has been anything but boring!