I had almost convinced myself that I was too busy to be a leader at Camp for Kids this year. Almost… but then I started remembering different children from last year’s camp and wondering how they were going and realised that I had to go back and see the kids!
Let me share with you some of the stories from camp this year.
It was Evan’s first time on Camp. He is in Year 6 and a very talented footballer who has been selected to attend a selective Sports High School next year. I had noticed and commented to Evan about his ball skills and Evan was keen to show me some of his expertise. On the last day of camp, Evan was one of the first kids to stand when given the invitation of “Who wants to invite Jesus into their lives?” I spoke with Evan later; he was very genuine in his decision. We spoke briefly about what it meant for him and I said that I would pray for him. With watery eyes, he gave me the biggest hug as he went on his way.
Emma has been on Camp for Kids before. This year, she really opened up to one of the leaders about what life is like for her. Emma had lots of questions about God that guaranteed great conversation. We gave Emma a Bible and suggestions of passages to read. For the rest of the camp, Emma spent any spare time she could, reading her Bible with a huge smile on her face. Emma also gave her life to God this camp.
We were blessed to have 16 Junior Leaders helping on Junior Camp. Connor was one of our Junior Leaders. He had never been on camp before, but a Prison Chaplain had mentioned camp to his father. On the preparation day before campers arrived it was very clear that Connor didn’t want to be there. His body language spoke volumes. I had a chat to Connor and encouraged him that God had him on camp for a reason. He would be able to relate to the campers and be able to connect with them in a way that perhaps others couldn’t. It was wonderful to witness the transformation in Connor from a sullen teen who didn’t want to be there to a willing leader with an entourage of kids following him everywhere.
On the last night of camp, Leticia who will be in Senior Camp next year came up to me, rested her arm on my shoulder and said “Miss Chris, I’m coming back in three years’ time as a Junior Leader. Please keep coming back, I want you to be here.”
That’s the power of Camp for Kids. Not a relaxing camp for leaders, but one with eternal rewards. How can I say no?