Below are four reasons why I love camp.
1) Have to vs Get to: I am Associate Pastor/Minister of Students. I wish the church I work at was big enough where I could just be Minister of Students but that is not the case. The Associate Pastor side of my job are all the things I "have to do" to justify my salary. For example: I have to visit the hospital. I have to be in the office from 9-3 (Boooorrrinng). I have to visit shut ins. I have to edit the bulletin. I have to run the web page. I have to do the announcements. I have to...
When it comes to my students these are the things I get to do. I get to go without sleep for an entire weekend. I get to spend time pouring into my students. I get to play dodgeball and eat Taco Bell with middle and high schoolers. I get to hang out with middle school students. I get to snap chat. I get to watch God work in the lives of students. I get to...
Camp reminds me of all the reasons why I love my students and love spending time with teenagers. Camp rejuvenates me and excites me to continue to pursue the Lord and run hard after Him. I love my students and I love getting to spend time with them. There is no other place I'd rather be than spending time with my students.
2) Learning More About God in the Sessions: I understand that camp and the sessions are geared for students but God constantly and consistently teaches and speaks to me every time we go to camp. My students come back on fire for God and I also come back on fire and with a renewed commitment to training students and reaching students with the Gospel. Just look at some of the things I learned this past weekend:
- Do we look more like Christ now than you did two years ago?
- Where do we see the power of God? The power of God is not found in nature but is found in the Word of God (Romans 1:16).
- The Bible is the power of God and our only offensive weapon to battle temptation and Satan.
- You can't love Jesus and not love His word.
- We should keep a running conversation with God all day long.
- God does not intend for us to fight our battle with sin alone.
- Accountability cannot be imposed. It must be invited.
How can I not learn more about God with sessions like we had this weekend.
3) Watch God Move In The Lives Of My Students: I am on my third year as Student Minister and this past weekend was my fourth time getting away for a weekend or week with my students. Every time I am amazed at what God does and is doing in their lives. God did a work this weekend in each of their lives and it's an amazing privilege to watch God move in their lives.
I have watched my students grow closer to God but I have also watched them mature as they are given more and more responsibility. For example, I'm not a fan of babying students so when we go to camp they are responsible for their own money, room keys, phones, etc. I tell my students all the time I'm not your mama I'm not going to be waking you up in the morning. This past weekend every student was given a card which they would use to get into the cafeteria. If they lost the card they could not eat. Some of the students were nervous about losing their card and asked if I would hold it. I politely looked at them and asked if I looked like their mama. When the answer was no. I told them that I treat them like adults and they are responsible for their own card. Do you want to know something? Not one student lost their card. Every one was responsible enough to take care of themselves.
Several of the older high school students I watch take a middle school student under their wing and help to instruct and teach them about life. It was fun to watch.
4) I Love Spending Time With My Students: I realize this point is a lot like my first point but I just want to reiterate how much I love spending time with my students. Julia and I feel that every student in our group is one of our own. We are sad when they are sad, hurt when they hurt and happy when they are happy. They are an extension of our family. I love each and everyone of them and spend time in prayer for each of them everyday. There is no better way to spend my weekend or week than by spending time with each of them.
In conclusion, I LOVE CAMP!!! I love camp because I love my students and love watching God mold them and shape them into His image. I look forward to many years of serving as a Minister of Students.