There are three main goals we have for a camper during a week of camp.
1) They have fun
2) They make new friends/grow closer to old friends
3) They learn about God
The beauty of camp is that these three things happen almost automatically. The formula is simple: 50 summer staff + love for Jesus + passion for youth + gorgeous natural environment = AMAZING WEEK. However, bad things can still happen. Homesickness can creep up, kids can get injured, a cabin mate might say something mean. Weeks can be ruined. We’d be naive to think that these things are always just bad luck. Our former Executive Director, Bruce, would sometimes say “Satan doesn’t like what’s going on here.” We face the reality of spiritual warfare everyday. Perhaps more so during the summer months when children are growing closer to Jesus all the time.
This past summer there was one camper who really impressed the staff with his resilience to these attacks. His name was Nick. From the moment he stepped off the bus, Nick was beaming. Everyone noticed Nick’s smile. The grin never left his face. He was so excited to be at camp and ready for what God had in store for him. But the “bad luck” started almost right away. During the cabin bonding activities at the low ropes course, Nick got really dehydrated and had to lie down. His counselor got him the water he needed and Nick was back to 100% before dinner. Nick kept his smile the whole time. The enemy couldn’t ruin his day.
Later that night, Nick was stung by a bee. Then, he was stung again. Then again. In total, the poor kid was stung 5 times. But as the nurse was addressing his stings, Nick was smiling. His resolve to have a great week and meet God was not diminished.
The next day, Nick got an ear infection. The day after that, Nick got an eye infection. Then, during a game, he was kicked in the head. If that wasn’t enough, another camper was playing with some small rocks (something that he’s not supposed to do), Nick got caught in the crossfire, and received a blow to head. The enemy seemed determined to give Nick a horrible week. But after each and every one of these unfortunate events, Nick simply shrugged it off, beamed his memorable smile, and ran off to continue his play.
At the end of the week, Nick – like many other campers – was sad to go. All of his misfortune throughout the week had not changed his opinion of this place. Before he got on the bus, he hugged his counselor and said, “Thanks for the best week of my summer!”
Pray for Covenant Pines
While such a large number of unfortunate events is unlikely, injuries happen at camp. Nick’s resolve to have a great week cannot be ignored, but there is an unsung hero in this story; you. You and everyone else out there who has ever prayed for the ministry of Covenant Pines. There is power in prayer. Those prayers have protected children on these grounds every summer since 1954. The prayers keep kids like Nick safe from physical harm. They also give our counselors energy and patience. They allow speakers to hear God’s voice as they deliver their sermons. They give camp leadership wisdom as they make tough decisions. Your prayers, and God’s grace make camp possible everyday. Thank you for praying. Please continue to do so as we prepare for this summer and also as we continue to minister to guest groups every week.
Watch the video below to see what summer camp is like. Register for a summer camp today!