I've been home over two weeks now, so it's about time I write a little about camp.
* The thing that I came away with the most was a greater appreciation for the Gospel. I was surprised at how many of my campers didn't know what the Gospel is. Some could tell me what it was, but had never heard it called the Gospel. Many thought it was the Bible or Matthew/Mark/Luke/John. I love how our church and church school talk about the Gospel all the time and that kids hear it at a young age.
* I had amazing campers. I was so thankful I got blessed with some of the best campers. Seeing what some of the other counselors had to deal with made me appreciate, even more, the campers I had. I did get some of the loudest campers, no doubt. And I think it was my girls that most often resulted in a guy counselor coming upstairs to tell us to be quiet. But, I'll take a little noise over what could have been.
* A wonderful family to spend my weekends with. I was so beyond blessed to have met this family (he pastors the Sovereign Grace church in Altoona). I don't know that I've ever met a more hospitable family. They invited me into their home and family. They never once gave me the impression I was imposing on them, even though I was. I was able to do my laundry there whenever I wanted. I spent most Saturday nights and they were always enjoyable. Mrs. Kurtz was always so encouraging and always ALWAYS pointed me back to Christ no matter what we were talking about. I left there wishing I was as close to my pastors' wives as I was to Mrs. Kurtz. I really could say so much more, but it's hard to put into words what this family means to me.
* My fellow counselors were such a blessing. Going into this, I only knew my friend Hannah. As the summer progressed, I really came to love the people I worked with. I obviously got to know some more than others, but even the ones I don't know that well are still dear to me. The girls, especially, were great at making me feel welcomed as 1 of 2 new girls. I really wasn't sure how I would do getting to know people and I definitely do regret not getting to know certain people better, but I can't change that now and I'm still thankful God brought them into my life.
* We had one-on-ones with each of our campers each week. These were some of my favorite times. At the end of a long day of activities and constant noise, I got to sit down with a camper individually and talk to them one-on-one. I had several campers this summer and without these one-on-ones I probably wouldn't know a whole lot of deeper issues going on with them. These quiet moments of talking to them without other people listening in meant so much to me.
* I had many opportunities to test how content I was being single. There were budding relationships, dating relationships, engagements, a bridal shower, and a couple getting married at the end of the summer. 6 months ago I would have been extrememly jealous, but this summer proved to me that God has done so much in my heart to bring me to a place of contentment with my lot in life. Whether I stay single for a long time or single forever, I feel content with that, knowing it's God's plan for my life. While I still have a strong desire to be a wife and mom, I have a stronger desire to love God and accept His plan for my life.
So much else happened this summer that I won't even get into since this is already lengthy. I left camp knowing, without a doubt, that this is what God wanted me to do this summer. Everything I felt God was calling me to do was wrapped into this experience. I would love to go back next summer, but it's too far away to know now if it's something I can do again.