Over the last couple weeks our regional Foursquare Summer Camps took place for kids and youth at Stillwood Camp. Every year men and women from Foursquare churches in the Lower Mainland take a week or two off from work to race, cheer, listen, learn, worship, pray, lead and serve Jesus by serving the next generation.
For many students God uses camp to make people. It used to be common in the Christianese language to say “God wrecked me” but I don’t like the negative connotation – of course they mean it in a good way: God breaks people down so He can rebuild (similar to a doctor that needs to re-break a bone that didn’t heal correctly). Camp is a common environment where God makes people – He forever changes the direction of their life because His word and presence do that. To see or hear God is to be forever impacted. Of course, He extends to us the freedom to obey or run away.
In fact, many do run away, at least at first. God’s call is often scary because it means living a life outside of our control. God’s call is also hard because it entails sacrifice and change. Upon returning to regular life after encountering the voice and presence of God, it is tempting and easy to let it become a distant memory. And yet it’s a memory we can never shake. Due to our design and God’s reality we never forget Him. And in a gracious way He “haunts” us – faithful to remind us and call us back – usually at inconvenient times.
And why do so many encounter God at camp? Is it magical or some social, emotional phenomenon? Some use the language “God showed up”, when in reality it is we who showed up. God is always there, always calling, always present. It is no coincidence that when we break from the normal distracted routine of life to worship Him and open our lives to His Word and Spirit that we see Him and hear Him.
Would you join me in praying for our students and leaders that they would be faithful to guard that which was deposited in them at camp. That they might find, in Christ, the strength to live out their calling.
Would you also consider serving at a future camp and sending your students to camp? I know it’s not for everyone, but as a parent would you be faithful to God, yourself, and your child by seeking His will for your family. If you don’t have kids, you can also serve, pray and give.
Below are the two camp videos: