I recently sent this out to everyone on my regular mailing list, but I thought it would be good to post here as well. I realized that many times when I post things on here or other send out letters that I don’t really talk about the purpose behind why I do what I do here. Partially, this is because when I write letters, I focus on the things that I am specifically doing right now, things that are the most pressing, or events that affect me most as an individual. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because I feel like it keeps you better informed on things to pray for right here and now. But, when I focus on those topics, because there is usually quite a bit going on, it is easy to forget to explain the bigger picture behind it.
So with that in mind, I thought I’d take a look at what our goal here at camp is, and how I fit into it. Our mission statement here at camp is as follows:
“To provide a haven in God’s creation where young people are challenged to become effective, kingdom-minded Christ followers through sound Bible teaching and meaningful discipleship relationships.”
You’ll notice that no where in there does it say anything about activities or games. Yes, it is true that the activities are a good way to draw kids here, because who wouldn’t want to come to camp and play games. And because of that, we probably have a bigger impact. But, I think it goes beyond just that. In most cases, the campers that come here for their first time won’t know anyone else. And that can be a challenging experience, especially growing up. So our activities are then a way to get kids out of their shells, have some fun, give them something to bond with the other kids and their counselors over, and make some memories. By doing this, we can help the campers build relationships and through those relationships the counselors can share how Christ has changed their lives. After volunteering here for many years, I’ve seen it time and time again where kids, even those who are initially hostile to the gospel and want nothing to do with it, can be won over by the example of a kind counselor or other campers. So, in that way, I hope to use my role to encourage others to be the light written about in Matthew 5:16.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Of course, that in itself is only part of my job. Unlike to the campers themselves, I have a more direct ministry to our staff, especially to those who are here for the full summer. We have our staff here for usually 2-3 weeks, and sometimes up to 12 weeks. That’s a long time to spend with people, working together for 10-12 hours days. So during that time we try to develop relationships with them as well and challenge them to grow closer in their walk with Christ. They come with their own struggles they are dealing with, and that’s our opportunity to come alongside them and encourage them.
And that’s how I see my role here at camp. It’s not generally direct teaching to the campers, but I think it’s still important. So when you see me talking about what we’re doing next and working on and how I’m doing, I hope you can appreciate how that relates to the larger scheme.
On a completely different note, things are progressing pretty well with the house. I recently just added a new page in my Personal Projects page called Refinishing the floors where I talk about the sanding, scraping, and sealing the hardwood floors I found underneath the carpet my house. Now that the floors are done, it lets me progress with a few other projects, like finishing my trim and baseboards and remodeling the larger kitchen!
One thought on “Why I Do What I Do”
Joe, I really appreciate your heart for both the kids and the staff. I agree one hundred percent that the staff needs to be given every effort to grow closer to Jesus while they serve at camp. Thanks for keeping Susan and me informed. Love in Him, Fred