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Camp Epic 2011(Part 3 of 3)

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Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you…(1 Corinthians 15:1-2a NLT)

Camp is officially over. It’s hard to believe really. Last week at this time we were just about to arrive and embark on this life changing week. The week was everything that we hoped and prayed for; 12 students age their lives to Christ for the first time, nearly 25 students rededicated their lives to the cause of Christ, a few students even talked with me about missions. There were tears shed, personal faiths renewed; for many students this message of the gospel ‘clicked’ for the first time. The week truly could not have been better.

As I have been reflecting on camp the last few days, thinking back to the decisions made and the experiences shared; I have been trying to process mentally what it was that God used so significantly in the lives of our students this week. What did God use to ignite our students so strongly?? Was it the daily recreation? The awesome worship? The engaging teaching? Perhaps it was getting away from the norms? It couldn’t have been the food! What was it that God used to so affect our students?!?!!?????

Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you…
(1 Corinthians 15:1-2a NLT)

It wasn’t any of the external things this week!! It wasn’t white water rafting or the zip line. It wasn’t the captivating worship songs, or the skits. It wasn’t even the polished teaching. It was that the Gospel of Jesus Christ was clearly and frequently proclaimed. It was the gospel! So often we get caught up in the do’s and don’t’s of Christianity- focusing on behavior and the outward affects but this week we focused on the heart changing Gospel! We weren’t focused on results; we were focused on the truth of the Gospel of Christ and it produced results we could never have dreamed!! It was so unbelievably simple- the gospel. It’s sad how quickly we can move away from the truth and love and grace in the gospel. But this week we simply focused on the Good News and students responded- wanting to embrace God more, serve him harder, know him deeper. I think many of our students realized this ‘God Stuff’ is so much more than a list of rules and regulations but that it is a love relationship with the Creator- and this Creator has created them for a purpose! INCREDIBLE.

Now we are all back home, back down from the mountain top experiences but this is the reality we all live in- this is the day to day. I encouraged our students by sharing that camp isn’t just a bump on you life road but that it changes the ultimate direction of the road itself. Parents, I encourage you to ask an many questions about camp as possible. Get all the details you can about camp and encourage your students to write down as much as possible about what God did in their lives this week! Here are some good starter questions:

1. What was your favorite part of camp?
2. How did camp measure up to your expectations?
3. What did God teach you this week?
4. What songs did you sing? What was the teaching about
5. What was your favorite skit?
6. Who did you get to know better this week?
7. What did you share with the SWO staff leaders during share times?

These should get you off to a good start! I will also be mailing a letter to each parent with some helpful tips at the end of the week. Please, if any of you would like to speak to me directly about your son/daughter’s experiences at camp, I would be more than happy to make that happen! Just email students@stfchurch.com

Camp was incredible, and it was so much more than an experience! God has his hand on this ministry- I can hardly wait to see whats next!!!

-Rob