Yesterday we came back from our yearly winter camp and it was definitely an experience unlike I’ve ever had. Here’s a rundown of the weekend.
– On the way up, our bus broke down on the mountain. The radiator started leaking and water was pouring out of the back of the bus. Thankfully, we were in an area where we got cell phone reception. I called the camp up and told them we were stuck and they didn’t have a bus or van to shuttle kids up. but thankfully there was a guy there that had just dropped off a group of kids and he said he’d come down and get us. Total sovereignty of God moment there. So we unloaded our bus, waited for awhile for the bus to get down to us, and then loaded it up, and eventually got to camp 6 hours after we left church. By the way, it took us two and half hours to get home, which is a normal time.
– we get to camp late, missing the first session, but safe and sound. The next day we had two sessions. The sessions were quite odd and shallow, and even the kids noticed that. Then that night was ‘decision night’ and he went through the two sessions without mentioning the word ‘sin’. it was more of a message to have kids turn to God to get rescued from the situations they find themselves in life or from the culture around them. It was a very incomplete Gospel. I was really frustrated because a lot of kids stood up, but didn’t know why. We had one kids who sensed that his relationship with God wasn’t right, and at the end of the night asked us, “So how do you get saved?”.
the speaker gave three alter calls, one to give your life to Christ, one to ‘rededicate’ their life, and another to committ your life to service. I was joking later that he should have given an alter call for those that want to pray or evangelize more. Just keep going until you’ve made everyone in the room stand.
Russ and I talked to the speaker the next morning, and it didn’t go how we thought it would. He said that it was never his intention for it to be a salvation message. This surprised me because that’s almost what camp is all about. And then why would you give an alter call if it wasn’t your intention to preach salvation? He pointed to the logo of the camp that year, and it had words like ‘discipleship’ and ‘love’ and other words on it and he said it didn’t say anything about sin or salvation. Then I pointed to it and said, ‘It says faith!’. How do you come to faith without realizing your sin.
He said his intention was to get the kids to trust God with their lives, and I asked him how that’s possible without dealing with your sin first. He asked me how Christ dealt with the disciples. I said that was a different time and before pentacost, but that Christ still called them to repentance. He kinda rolled his eyes and said, ‘Oh…ok…’ like he was saying ‘you’re one of those dispensationalists’ or something.
The conversation finished with him saying, ‘well, we could go around in circles about this all day.’ Russ and I were a little shocked and we talked to the camp director right after and he said he was surprised that he said that and that he’d talk to the speaker. I guess it ended somewhat well, because in the last session, he talked about sin for the first time and really explained well the day after ‘decision night’.
– one great thing from the weekend was ‘Aicha’, which is a video on stupidvideos.com. It is basically this freshman aged kid singing to this girl named Aicha and then adding this fantastic dance at the end. you should find it and check it out. Now the song is stuck in all our minds. Also, search for ‘numa numa’ and watch the video. just funny stuffy.
– our team made me very proud, as we once again walked away with the Rec Time Title. The thing is, though, is that we did it with our 7th graders, who are mostly all smaller than the wife. Our boys were slit into two groups, and it was basically our 7th graders on one team and the big 8th graders on the other. We ended up teamed up with a group of awesome girls from another church. They were so hardcore and together we almost swept every game we played, and we won every spirit award we could. Our other boys and our girls’ teams tied for 3rd. Our tiny tirants just whooped up on everyone. It was funny when they announced it beacuse all the little guys jumped up and you could almost sense that everyone was thinking, ‘they won the rec time?!’ Good times…
Well, we got back down the mountain in one piece (just one girl with a sprained ankle acquired in a cabin incident). It was a good weekend and it was really good to see a lot of the kids use discernment and recognize when they were hearing something that wasn’t right and not being content with the shallow teaching. that at least told me that they have been paying attention when we teach them.