Strange Start To Summer
For those of you who do not know or have not heard yet; we had to cancel our first camp of the summer. We had some quick but severe storms Saturday night during our Counselor Training Weekend and lost power at Camp. We spent all day Sunday frantically trying to get in touch with someone to get the power back on with little success. It finally came time for a decision to be made and when it was 6 o’clock Sunday night, still with no power and a camp lined up to start the next day, Alan had to make a tough call. It hurt our hearts to cancel girls out reach camp, but God has been faithful throughout this week in so many ways to show us that He is still in control!
Late Sunday night we had a mission team show up that was supposed to help us with girls out reach. We had no way of getting in touch with them to let them know we lost power. To their surprise, they show up to a camp ready to work and pour love into campers only to find out the plans have drastically changed. They didn’t hesitate at the opportunity to stick around and help us clean up Camp from the storms and prepare everything for the rest of the summer. The mission team has been a great example to our staff that are still here this week of what a servants heart looks like in action! God even helped create opportunities for the mission team to still get to pour the love of Christ into some local people. While handing out flyers to the community for a Summer Kickoff Block Party we are going to have tomorrow, they got to present the gospel to a lady who had almost given up on faith all together. That was just one of the ways God has continued to move in what is happening at Camp this week when everything seems to be too chaotic to have purpose.
We know that God has His hand in all things, and that there is a bigger purpose behind why this weeks camp was canceled. Whether we figure out what that purpose is today, tomorrow, next week, or next year; we will forever be grateful for the blessings we did get to be a part of this week even though we did not have a camp. God is great and even if things continue to be this crazy all summer….We cannot wait to see how God will be brought glory through it all!!
“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
How Excited Are You?!
While trying to think of what to share with you guys for this weeks blog post I couldn’t help but continually think about how excited I am about what is going to happen this summer! God is doing some amazing things with camp this summer, and it would not be possible without all of the support you guys have offered! It also would not be possible without the incredible staff and counselors that God has put in place to be here this summer. That’s why I wanted to share with you what some of our senior staff members are most excited about for this summer, and what camp means to them. Let’s get into it!
At our staff meeting last night I asked all of the people present to write down: 1. What they are most excited about for this summer? 2. What does Camp Ba-Yo-Ca mean to you? Here is what they had to say!!!
Abbey Powell (Specialty Camp Program):
Camp means good times and building a foundation for mature believers. I’m looking forward to the independence camp means & the opportunity to influence kids & hopefully put them on the right path.
Brianna Jackson (Program Director):
I am most looking forward to spending time away from the rest of the world with a community of close friends and believers united in the goal of showing Christ to kids. I have loved being a part of the camp ministry for the part several years. It is a place that has grown and stretched me consistently & taught me the value of hard work. It’s like home.
Caleb Rittenhouse (Specialty Camp Director):
I am excited to serve Christ with a strong group of believers.
Hannah Knight (Head Lifeguard):
Camp means seeing friends who really feel like family. Camps also means getting comfortable outside of your comfort zone.
Hannah Valentine (Media/Pictures):
I am most excited about the opportunity to change lives. Camp is supplying others with the tools to properly engage as an active Christian.
Kaleigh Powers (Program Utility):
I am most excited for sharing God’s love with the kids and growing closer to God this summer. Camp means a lot to me. It is a place where I have grown in my walk with God and where I have learned to try new things.
Madie Phillips (Program):
I’m looking forward to going back home & seeing what God is going to do in the lives of the campers and staff. Camp has been so influential in my life from being a camper for 5 years to starting my 4th year working at camp. I have seen Jesus change so many lives. It’s my favorite place!
Madison Snyder (Office Administrator):
I am most excited about watching the Lord work through so many different people. Camp is home. It is spiritual growth. It is a challenge. It is rewarding. Camp is home.
Noah Rittenhouse (Program – Special Activities):
One thing that I am looking forward to is boy’s outreach. Each Wednesday afternoon I hang out with the kids at the Western Heights Boy’s and Girl’s Club. The last time I went, I asked the kid that I have been working with if he is going and he said yes. I am so looking forward to spending time and showing Christ to him. Camp has impacted my life in a powerful way. I want camp to impact the kids the same way I was impacted.
Savannah Frost (Program):
I am so excited to be a part of camp this summer! I know there will be a lot of changes, and I’m super excited to be a part of those. I’m most excited for girl’s traditional camps because those are the ones I always went to as a camper so I really connect to it. Camp has played such a big part in my life and my walk with Christ. I’m so excited to be back!
Sydney McGinnis (Specialty Camp Program):
I am looking forward to being back at home. It’s all about the kids. I am also looking forward to making relationships with both staff/counselors and campers.
Will Wilson (Worship/Program):
I’m looking forward to getting away from the world a week at a time and getting to minister to kids. Camp is a sanctuary for me apart from the hustle and bustle of normal life.
Needless to say, our staff is ready to jump right in to what God is already putting into motion for this summer! We all cannot wait for our opportunity to dive right in and share the love of Christ with campers this summer!!
With our summer program starting in less than a month I thought this would be a great time to dive into the amazing things God has done to ensure that this is going to be a wonderful summer indeed! As you read this post please take time to pray with us that we will be faithful stewards of all the blessings God has put in place for us here at camp this summer, and that we will not overlook any opportunity the Spirit makes available for us to reveal truth to our campers about what truly makes camp wonderful—the love and sacrifice of Jesus Christ!
This theme started out of a simple conversation between Alan and myself over coffee in the office one day. He thought it would be a fun way to get our campers engaged and allow us to blend some (societal) trends with (biblical) truth. I was on board because I love super heroes! Of course I understand that we did not pick this as the theme because I love super heroes. We picked it because of the practical application it can have on the lives of our campers. There are multiple references in scripture (depending on which translation you use) that tell us that Jesus is an Avenger. i.e. Avenger of blood Deuteronomy 32:43 and Avenger of transgression 1 Thessalonians 4:6 just to name a few. We know there is evil in the world and sadly children of today’s society have to face it head on at younger and younger ages. We hope to create a space at camp this summer where children can understand the need to have an Avenger like Jesus on their side.
Worship: Newish and Improved
We have been blessed over the past few years to have staff and counselors who are passionate about worship. This year we have the very talented Will Wilson heading up our worship for the summer. God has also worked is some very incredible ways and brought TC and Danielle Chambers back into the camp mix and they will be working with our worship team to help them prepare for the summer! It is obvious to see the hand of God putting everything together so that we can create a true atmosphere of praise and worship this summer. I personally can’t wait to experience what is coming this summer!
Mission Teams: So Many of Them
Thanks to the hard work of Steve Snyder, and our partnership with Project Knox 316, we have roughly 10 teams already signed up to help us in our ministry this summer! We are so thankful for their willingness to come and serve the campers we have and show them what servant hearts look like in practice. I am sure that some pretty amazing things will happen this summer because of their hard work!
All in all, there are some wonderful things in store for this summer! We cannot wait for the campers to get here, and for them to finally get to experience all the things God has been preparing for them. Again, please pray for us (staff and counselors) and for all the campers that will be up here throughout the summer! It’s going to be great!!!