Camp Building

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                     July 21, 2013

 

 

     Yesterday about a dozen of our kids, young people, and three adults came back from a week at church camp. In worship today there were several testimonies from the campers about their experience. There was a heightened level of energy and excitement in worship. The energy may have been fueled by the sharing of how camp had impacted lives, or it was the result of lives that had been impacted…or perhaps it was because the Spirit seemed close and moving in our midst…or all three.

This was the first year in the last five that I didn’t go to be camp pastor at the middle school camp, but I have always felt that the church- not just mine- doesn’t do enough in building upon the spiritual excitement of camp in the weeks that kids come back home. Perhaps that’s because the campers are away…an hour away. Sometimes we miss the momentum because it didn’t occur in the church building or the community. On the other side, kids come back from camp on spiritual highs, emotionally charged and wondering what is the next thing to take place. They encounter parents who have gone to work each day during the past week as usual, people who have gone about their routines and responsibilities.

Sometimes the first few days after camp are disappointing for those returning home. That’s why camp is such a great experience! It’s twenty-four hours a day of relationship-building, making new friends, campfires, and getting messy with shaving cream and Cheetos. The campers have been taken out of their usual surroundings and, in essence, they start building a new home with a new family of their peers under the watchful eye of their counselor. My guess is that almost all of the students who were at the middle school and high school camps last week have already been on Facebook with most of their camp friends, sharing pictures, “I miss you” comments, and counting down the number of days until camp next summer.

The church would do well to build on what many of the campers now see as the greatest week of their lives. The church would do well to challenge them at this point in their faith and commitment. If that happens it will help young people looking for a purpose to find purpose. If it doesn’t…if that building on camp doesn’t happen…they will continue to count down the days until next summer, and about 360 days will be lost in their growing season.

Explore posts in the same categories: Bible, children, Christianity, Community, Faith, Freedom

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