Our first week at Campf!re has come and gone and we already have counsellors arriving for the second. It’s hard to imagine that we get to do this all summer and that this beautiful property will be our home for the next two months. I have to remind myself that this is a job, because sometimes it seems too good to be true. I get to spend the rest of the summer outside in God’s creation, teaching children about the Creator and sharing His love with them. As I write this the only sound outside is the wind in the trees and despite the peaceful atmosphere, it seems strange. It is bizarre to be at camp without campers being here with us, to only hear birds chirping without the additional sounds of children laughing, shouting, running, singing . . .
The past week was fantastic but also challenging. For three-quarters of the staff it was our first week ever in our positions and at times we felt overwhelmed with it all. As a whole, we all learned a lot about trusting the Lord to take care of things instead of holding on to the desire to control things ourselves. At church we even had sermons on this topic going in to our first week as well as the Sunday after. As we head into our second week we are a little more at ease, having some experience to go by. No manual can really prepare you for this role. It’s difficult to explain how camp works unless you’ve been here, but suffice to say it’s the most incredible place. I always forget how much I love camp and how much I love spending time with children. They come up with the most hilarious ideas and stories, and inspire me with their immediate love, trust and joy. This week one young camper warned me of the dangers of cooties, seriously adding that I was at risk because “sometimes everybody loves the staff best.”
There are so many memories jam-packed into one week—memories of encouraging conversations with counsellors, splash wars in the canoe pond (where most of the campers were more interested in dunking their heads in the water than actual canoeing), incredibly creative sand-castle building at Wasaga, hoarse voices singing praises in the early morning at counsellor devotions, chaplains doing gymnastics at the talent night, counsellors dressed up in the most ridiculous costumes for skits, children eagerly poring over their Bibles in chapel, everyone worshipping under a beautiful night sky and so many prayers. Camp is rooted in prayer, built on it, steeped in it. We pray at the beginning of every day and at the close of every day, as well as throughout it; we are constantly praying to our all-powerful God. We thank Him for the blessings found here and ask for safety, discernment, encouragement, strength, patience, humility, peace, and above all, love, for it covers a multitude of sins. We thank our God for providing this fortress and pray that we would show His love to one another. We ask for your prayers as we head into our second week and praise Him for the one we just had, giving thanks for the blessings He showers on us. God is good, all the time!
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