Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Last night I got back from 5 days at Senior High Camp along the shore of Lake Erie in Vermillion, Ohio. It was an exciting, busy, exhausting, hilarious, hot, wet, dirty, sad and uplifting experience.

In many ways it was exactly like the first time I went to Senior High Camp last year.

But I can think of a few ways it was way DIFFERENT for me.

1. Last year was very intimidating for me because it was the first time I had met most of the students and many of the leaders. This year I went into it knowing several students and almost all of the leaders. So, there was a certain level of comfort for me.

2. Last year was also very emotional for me. I had been holding back from getting involved with students for several years. I just never felt like I was ready. Even last year I didn't feel completely ready, but I jumped in and was overwhelmed by a lot of stuff God revealed to me last year. This year it wasn't very emotional at all. It was, however, significant in many ways. God spoke to me again and I have a great challenge ahead of me.

3. Last year I was given a clear call from God into a very specific area of ministry. This year there was no clear call, but many clear challenges. I was given a clearer picture of myself and of the people around me. I am learning to see people the way God sees them, instead of how I normally see them.

4. Last year I was energized by camp. This year I was physically exhausted by camp but am much more focused than I was a week ago. I don't have to rush out and force situations to become opportunities for me to fulfill the call of God in my life. He's got the spots picked out for me. All I have to do is be faithful in the little things and be ready for those opportunities.

5. Last year I didn't come away with many real solid connections with students. This year I feel like I've got a lot of new friends, including some real strong connections with young men that may have a great deal of influence over the direction of their youth group this year and beyond. That's exciting ... and intimidating.

6. Last year I didn't have much of a problem leaving my kids for 5 days. This year I missed them really badly. I think it's because of the way God was challenging me. I know I haven't been exactly what He's called me to be as a father and so I spent a lot of time thinking about them while I was away.

I went in with high expectations. Some of them were met, others weren't. But in the end I realized that DIFFERENT is definitely good.

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