What do you get when you cross 28 2nd-5th graders and 5 days at camp? Exhaustion.
I was a counselor at a church camp for 5 days. There were 28 hyperactive-high-energy children, countless mosquitos, cold nights, burnt food, a tick infestation, and no electricity.
But there was also an absolutely amazing team of staff members, incredible prayer time, beautiful moments of peace, insane displays of love for one another, and a definite awareness of Christ’s presence among us.
So first off, if you ever have the chance to 1. be a camp counselor or 2. send your child to camp do it.
If you’re having any doubts, I have a few stories to convince you.
So I had these two girls. They’re both 10 and simply wonderful kids. We were walking back to our cabins one night and one of them was having a hard time because she felt that she was not living her life in a way that Jesus wanted. So I said “Well, lets pray about it.” And she said “I pray about it a lot and I feel like it just doesn’t change anything.” And then the other girl stopped us in our tracks, placed both hands on the other girl’s shoulders, looked her dead in the eyes and said “Well, maybe a few more people praying for you will help, eh?” Then she led our prayer and just to give you a hint of what it was like, the prayer included: “Lord please wipe her slate clean and help her to feel the love you have for her.” She’s 10.
Then, I had a girl who was 8. It was her first year at camp and she was not happy to be there. Upon arriving, the first full sentence she said to me was “My favorite word is no.” I told her, “We’ll change that by the end of the week.” She said “No you won’t, you can’t.” So the last day of camp roles around and after breakfast she tells me, “My favorite word is still no, but my second favorite word is Rachel.” And if that’s not cute enough, a couple hours later she had finished packing up her stuff and she walks up and hugs me and says, “My new favorite word is yes. But I’ll still say no when you ask me if I want to leave.” Then she hugged me tight and cried.
Those are some of my favorite stories from this week at camp. But to give you a little glimpse at what the rest of my week consisted of, here are some lines from other campers, and keep in mind, these kids are 8 to 11 years old:
“Rachel, what’s the trinity?”
“So, if Adam and Eve hadn’t eaten from the tree, would they have lived forever in Eden?”
“If they would have lived forever in Eden, does that mean that they never would have gone to heaven? Does that make Eden heaven?”
“Dear God, help me to feel Christ in me and help His light to shine through me.”
In case you couldn’t tell, camp was amazing. I was so blessed to be a part of this incredible week and I will never forget the beautiful children who taught me what it is to truly channel Christ’s light. It was simply wonderful.