Hey peeps, the following entry is from our RidgeStudents blog and contains my thoughts about our recent camp experience. My hope, prayer and passion is that our students would live their lives for something more than this culture offers them. I pray that their faith would be increased on a daily basis and that their desire would rest in something far greater than what we can see. Our experience of worship and teaching is all for loss if not coupled with action. We must display the kingdom of God and choose to act in the name of Jesus Christ. Here are my thoughts:
With a 13-hour van trip ahead of us, it is difficult to gather my thoughts about all that has taken place. Camp is always that undefinable event where any number of things can happen. It can be encouraging and distressing, uplifting and unsettling, ground-breaking and heart-breaking all at the same time. Needless to say, worship and teaching have been outstanding this week. Here is a quick rundown of daily occurrences:
- Each night was spent on the beach, worshiping through song and reflection
- Each meal was shared together and everyone pitched in to share the responsibilities
- Every session coincided almost perfectly with our personal study and group study
- Each student was able to hear a true Gospel message and experience amazing worship
- Each student was challenged to evaluate the direction of their faith
- We had some great bonding opportunities through recreation and small group
We’ve had the privilege of two camp pastors, David Nasser and Darren Whitehead. Its so hard to pick a favorite, and its probably not necessary to do so. Overall, I believe the students connected most with Darren. I’m sure the Australian accent helped. Aside from that amazing factor, Darren’s message of a call to action and a Gospel-centric substance truly left an impression on the hearts of our students. Most if not all were visibly stirred to one degree or another. Whether it was a re-focus on what is important or a fresh dedication to the faith, every student responded in some tangible way this week.
Here are some highlights from the week and I’ll close this last camp entry with a few final words.
- Beach walk encounters and being able to share the Gospel and pray with people
- Being able to celebrate birthdays together
- Dodgeball mayhem
- Low amount of combined sleep
- Meeting believers from other parts of the country
- Celebrating the honor of “Youth Minister of the Day” (thanks guys)
- Rained out day and Toy Story 3
- Mini-golf and go-karts
- Receiving the hospitality of fellow believers from another church body
- Decisions for Christ and decisions to serve with the body of Christ
Overall, I leave camp with a burden to grow. I desire that we would know Christ more and become active in the calling that he has placed on our lives as believers. We are called to display the kingdom of heaven here on earth by setting things right within the world and sharing the awesome power of God’s word. I leave here with a refreshing view of students and their ability to perceive truth and apply it to their lives. I leave here with a renewed dedication to be on my knees for the faith of our students. And lastly, I leave here with hope. A hope in Christ, yes, but a hope in the possibilities and potential for our students. These young men and women have so many special gifts and talents and its our job as older leaders, parents and mentors to expose those gifts and encourage these students to use them for God’s glory and the advancement of his kingdom. Thanks to all who have supported this cause and a special thanks goes to our incredible leaders who gave up time and family to join us this week. Take care and have a great week in the Lord.
Peace in Him,