Hello friends and family,
This past summer has been an awesome one!!!
In the past few months, it has been challenging, engaging, adventurous, and exhausting all at the same time. Oh, and not to mention how sizzling hot it was!
To the right is a photo of myself standing 800 feet above the ground at the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge in New Mexico!
During the first two weeks of camp, all staff gathered for staff training before the beginning of summer camp. Even if I had been though the training before, it was great to be refreshed with the material and even assist in training a few of the younger staff. Getting to know all of the new and returning staff better, young and old, was the best part of staff training.
With the exception of one week at Presbytery of the Southwest youth camp, I spent the next seven weeks serving and leading boys ages 7-17 at Camp Wilderness Ridge. Each week included outdoor activities such as rock climbing, canoeing, archery, riflery, team-building, and swimming. Also, each day included a cabin Bible study in groups of 8-10, and evening worship and teaching.
As a counselor, my job throughout the week was to serve and lead each of them in a Christ-like manner, as Mark 10:45 says “For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and give His life as a ransom for many.” While serving their physical needs was part of my job, serving their spiritual needs was the most important, and impactful part of my job. Sharing my faith through interactive Bible studies and one-on-one conversations may be something that God uses to bring the lost to salvation. While I may never know the impact my testimony had on some, nevertheless, I know that I was following God’s call to be a witness to all nations! In fact, God calls all Christians to be witnesses (Acts 1:8).
At camp, my job obviously can become very tiring. Thankfully, my job is one of the most rewarding jobs! Or at least in my regard it is. Seeing the spiritual nourishment and learning from the Bible from the kids was the biggest motivator to overcome my exhaustion and continue serving. Some of the kids grew in their own knowledge of the Bible and walk with God, but for others, they came to know who God really is for the first time! Come to think of it, I grew a lot this summer as well!
After seven weeks of summer camp, the CWR staff traveled to the Sangre de Cristo mountains in Mora, New Mexico. In New Mexico, staff enjoyed activities such as hiking, disc golfing, rock climbing (on real rocks!), tourist shopping, and backpacking! The backpacking trip was challenging and topped out at almost 11,000 feet.
The cool weather was a relief from the Texas heat, as highs were in the 70s and lows were in the 40s and 50s. Almost forgot to mention, all of the summer and staff trip were made possible because of the hard work of camp’s summer camp director, Bryan Turner (pictured on far right).
As you may know, my apprenticeship was from September 2014 though August 2015, meaning my time at camp is nearly done. My apprenticeship will officially end by August 31. I am thankful for the opportunity to be part of camp’s full-time staff, during which I had the opportunity learn many new things and grow spiritually. I owe a lot to each full-time staff, including Bryan and Claire Turner, Jeremy and Lindsey Thomasson, Cody Benge, Ron and Sandy Hunt, and Shawn Hammer.
Within the next couple of months, I will be seeking employment in the restaurant business, since I want to advance into a culinary career. I will be seeking guidance from God’s word to find out exactly what to pursue next.
Another big thank you to all that have sent gifts or monthly support as I have worked at camp! Since I will no longer be on staff, I am no longer asking for donations for myself. If you wish to continue sending donations to Camp Wilderness Ridge, you may send it to one of camp’s funds at www.wildernessridge.com, or send it to the camp’s mailing address at P.O. Box 1025, Smithville, TX 78957.
Here are a few ways you can pray for me:
- Praise for a successful summer season: great staff, ministry opportunity, and spiritual growth.
- Praise for being financially funded throughout my apprenticeship.
- Pray for God to guide me as I look for a job and seek where God wants me to go next.
- Pray for healing for Ron Hunt, Executive Director, as he continues to heal from heart surgery.