Twas the Monday after Camp and … well … I am still trying to catch up on feeling rested! We had a great week with 50+ campers from Salem, Florence, Roseburg, Winston, Myrtle Creek, Glendale and points in between. Several young people made public their declaration to live as followers of Jesus Christ. Many young people were touched by the presence of God in many different ways.
But, it’s back to the real world for us today. Some of those young people are going to camp this week to serve as kitchen workers for our Association’s Children’s Camp. For most of us it is back to the normal patterns and places of our lives.
The challenge for campers and staffer’s alike is to capture the sense of God’s presence and power away from the emotionally charged atmosphere of camp. Spending a few days away from the normal patterns of our lives helps open our hearts and minds to the reality of God’s presence. Now we need to learn how to carry that sense of God’s presence and power into the routines of family, school, jobs, and the daily routine.
One strategy I have used is to try and keep the same pattern of spending time alone with God. It is different at camp when everyone affirms your need to be alone with God. At home the phone rings, parents need us to help with chores and caring for brothers and sisters, school demands an ever increasing amount of time…and getting alone can be hard. Then to try and get alone with God can almost be impossible. Yet, it is critical that we find ways to do just that. Ask for permission to close the bedroom door and read God’s Word and pray. Find a place in the home that is as quiet as possible and make that your place to meet with God. Whatever it takes, find time to meet with God.
When you find that time and place, keep a prayer journal. Write down your concerns, write what is on your mind, record those passages from God’s Word that are meaningful in your day to day reading.
Finally, find other believers that can help you grow. In Acts 2 when three thousand people responded to the call of Christ, the disciples organized them into groups that could meet from house to house- small enough to get to know one another and do life together. Find others in your own church…and keep your eyes open for those outside your fellowship who can stand with you in the midst of the demands on your time.
Don’t let what you experienced at camp be relegated to your past. Keep in step with God…and we’ll come together next year, Aug. 13-17 at Fir Point Bible Camp!