Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Summer 2016

This summer seems to have come and gone like a breeze! Although I am still seeking employment, each summer as with those in the past, I had the pleasure of working at a Bible camp. The first two weeks of the camping season were spent with children aged 7-12 years old, with the final week of camp being dedicated to teenagers aged 13 and up. I wish I could say that I didn't lose my mind on some days, but unfortunately I can't! All together, I've thoroughly enjoyed this summer thus far, and can't wait for what else is in store.




This camping season was slightly different than those in the past. I started the season off with some mild back issues, which in turned escalated to something unbearable near the last days of the final week. I was diagnosed with sciatica the week before camp started, but that didn't hold me back. Even with the pain, I still continued to exercise and run/walk around with the children at camp.

I love working out - almost too much! On the Wednesday of the final week of camp, I woke up that morning early enough to workout. I woke up to some pain, but thought it would fade away eventually as it usually does. This particular day, it didn't. As I progressed with my warm-up and then went into starting my workout, my back got steadily worse. I couldn't finish the workout, and I was left not being able to stand up straight for the rest of the day. I went to the doctor the next day to find out a few things about my body:

  1. I have flat feet - Yes, I knew to some degree that I didn't walk quite right, but it hadn't bothered me up to this point in life. My bad feet was/are putting strain on my back, causing my sciatic nerve pain to be much worse than it is normally.
  2. I had a pulled muscle in my back - The workout I did that Wednesday caused me to pull a back muscle, the one that's conveniently right above my sciatic nerve. 

I thank God that I feel much better now, only some sciatic nerve pain. Overall, I'm doing much better.

The camping season also brought challenges and changes for the rest of the staff and campers. One of the other staff members sprained her ankle during the second week of camp while running. She was the camp Program Specialist, organizing each event that the campers would participate with in order to ensure they have fun. With her being unable to walk and engage as she normally would, everyone had to pull double-duty. However, one thing that I saw in all the craziness that surrounded her injury and that of others, not one person complained. No one ever questioned the director's motives or orders - everyone saw the bigger picture, and that was to share the Gospel with the lost.


Some of the campers had challenges coming into Teen Week as well. A new senior staff came in to lead the staff that week, and it just seemed hard for everyone to get the teens to realize the magnitude of how their lives can be used for God. Starting from the first day of that week, over 80 memory verses were given to each camper, not with the hopes of learning all the verses in one week, but in order to establish a deeper meaning for the Scriptures in the lives of the teens. 

To be honest with you, on that Wednesday of Teen Week, I was beginning to get a little doubful. No one seemed to be engaging with the Scriptures. It just seemed to not sink in with the teens.

But then came Thursday.

As a new program, the camp went on two college tours that lasted all day long, which unfortunately I was unable to attend due to my back pain and having a doctor's appointment for my back that day. However, God did something amazing that night. After the Gospel message was presented, a challenge was given to each teen to live their lives on purpose for God, to stand out in a world that is waiting to conform them into its image. They were challenged to make a change for God, and many of them did.

Many tears were shed, and many lives were changed for the glory of God that night.

I may not have been there that night, but I could feel the effects of this revival throughout the rest of the week, and most importantly in my life. So often, I can get complacent in the things I do for God. Doing those things are only as good as the purpose and heart of the one in action. I want to live my life in such a way that glorifies God in all that I do.