By the time you all will be reading this post my youngest children will be home again in my safe embrace, but as I sit here right now in this moment I am mentally preparing for them to go to their first year of kids camp. We packed their bags together in the living room with everything they would need to include an extra pair of underwear just in case there was just too much fun going on. I had them gather their swim gear, shampoos, soaps, tooth brushes and all necessary items for them to still be clean while mom is not there to remind them (thank goodness for great staff and counselors to guide their little hearts).
I remember the first time I went to camp; it was also kid’s camp. I had the best time of my life, but I remember being scared and excited all at the same time. I didn’t want to leave my mom, but I knew that my dad would be there to help with the staff and I was also going with a bunch of my little friends. I remember all the new friends I made and was able to pray for. I still have pictures of my cabin mates from way long past. To say that camp was a highlight of my life is an understatement. I longed for summer camps and when they came to an end I was so utterly blue.
(My brothers and I after the summer I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. I once was taller than both my brothers, but it was brief and they still kicked my booty!)
I can honestly say that I would not be as strong a Christian today had I not attended. Oh, I’m not saying that you have to go to camp to be a good solid Christian, but for me camp was a way for me to learn what living the life of a Christian meant in terms I could understand. I was raised a pastor’s daughter and my sight was always from the view of how our family was loved and not so loved by people in our churches who called themselves Christians. It was skewed a bit, but at camp no one treated me like the pastor’s kids. I was just like every other kid there, ready to have fun and love Jesus.
Camp is where I felt called to serve Him in ministry. Camp is where I found the Holy Spirit, or rather He found me. Camp is the place where long lasting friendships were formed and diversity meant not a thing. I was born again at camp and was baptized in our home church not long after that. My heart was overflowing with the love of worship from camp chapel and I knew that I would serve God through my music; and I have for many years. My eyes and my heart were opened to a whole new world when I experienced camp.
So, as I sat and helped my kids prepare for camp I silently prayed for their little souls; that they would hear the voice of Jesus while they are gone from me for a week. I see excitement in their eyes for this time and that excites me as well.
Lord, you have given us a great responsibility as parents to seek out the hearts of our children and teach them about your love and grace and mercy. What an awesome charge! Lord, may I be ever ready for this bond and I pray that you will quip me for this duty at every stage my children are in and will be in. Speak to them, Lord, in ways that they will only understand and use their lives to further your kingdom. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Tell me about your experience at camp. What do you remember most? Who did you go with? What were some songs that you learned or what did God reveal to you?