Sunday, July 12, 2015

Saturday, July 10th, 2015 - Youth Summer Camp - "Commitment"

     Good morning!  It is Sunday morning and our camp is coming to an end in a few short hours.  Just as when we headed out to come to Belize and we had mixed emotions, those are starting to come flood our thoughts as we are preparing to send these young persons back home following our morning church service.  Several of the kids have asked to come to the states with us and it is tough telling them that is not an option.  Some of them are not wanted in their own homes, they feel rejected by God, and then they ask to come with us and are told that they are not able.  We try to explain that it is just not that easy, but how does it make them feel?  We wrestle with this and other emotions here at the end of camp.

     But enough about that for now, let's talk about our Saturday.  We woke up in the morning and had breakfast as a group.  The boys continued to serve the girls for breakfast because they have had some minor disciplinary incidents and were disrespectful to some.  While trying to let them know there are consequences for their actions, we had them continue to serve the young ladies.  After breakfast, the teams broke off into individual groups and completed their daily devotion.  Following their devotion, we all gathered in the chapel and played a minute-to-win-it game.  Following the game, Emily shared her testimony with everyone.  She did an awesome job.  After Emily finished, we were headed out to the sports field for some fun!

     We played basketball, dodgeball, volleyball and you guessed it, soccer.  These activities carried us to lunchtime.  At lunch, the young ladies actually served the guys which was the only time this happened here at camp.  Following lunch, we sent everyone out to complete their afternoon devotion while a few of us counselors set up for the afternoon activities.  Following the devotion, we brought the kids down to the sports field where an intense water ballon fight ensued.  That was followed by a slip-n-slide that was covered in slime.  It was a big hit and a lot of fun.  If you followed the blog from last years summer camp, you know that we spent hours cleaning up after our dough fight.  The bonus to the slime was that there was no clean up required!  The slime made it slick enough that if you fell down on the slide, you either had to roll off to the side or have someone help you up.  It was very entertaining.  Then we continued with water balloon volleyball and more soccer.  Some of the kids that had enough of soccer did some relay races as well.

     Then it was time to get cleaned up and ready for dinner.  We joined together in the dining area where once again, the young men served the young ladies.  After dinner, we headed back to the chapel for our evening worship.  We did a quick game with everyone to wake everybody up and then Shelley and Melvin led us in worship.  After a few songs, Lil' Mike came up and shared his testimony.  He has a powerful story to which many of the youth could relate.  In a previous blog, I mentioned about watching the movie "When the Game Stands Tall".  This movie had many great themes and we talked about several this week.  But in the movie, the players of the football team made commitment cards and gave them to another player to hold them accountable for that commitment.  Our campers had the opportunity to make a commitment following Lil' Mikes testimony.  But instead of being on a card, they were written on a piece of canvas that can be displayed at EQC or elsewhere.  Some of the commitments written by our youth were powerful.

     After a few more songs, we were nearing the end of worship when several of us performed one last skit for the youth.  Queen Ooga Booga made an appearance and court was held for several violations in camp.  One was for J, who did not participate in nail painting.  Three youths followed and their "charges" varied, but all ended the same way... just a little wet when they left.  Then it was back to the cabins and off to bed for us.

     We are having some intermittent internet issues here so our pictures are scarce currently as we have not been able to update photos as we would have liked.  But, I have added a few on this page and promise more as soon as I am able to upload them.  Keep checking back throughout the day.  But for now, it is off to breakfast and then to prepare for church this morning.  A couple of us will be headed out soon to go pick up the EQC congregation and bring them to the chapel at camp for worship.

     Until next time...

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