Monday, March 31, 2008

Whew, Busy Weekend!

Nathan and I spent a weekend at Wildhorse Canyon in Central Oregon. It's a Young Life camp where I have spent a lot of time in the past and I hadn't been there in over 2 years. Not only that, but Nathan had never been to a Young Life camp. We decided that it would be a good idea for him to at least see the place where I would be spending a week every summer.

Taking kids to camp is basically the culmination of all the work we Young Life leaders do with the kids throughout the year. It's a time when the kids are taken out of their lives that are forcing them to grow up too fast, and are allowed to just BE kids. Each YL camp is like a 5 star resort for high schoolers, complete with being totally served, an olympic sized pool, amazing food, and a lot of great games. It's also a time for kids to be completely immersed in a Christian environment where they can be approached with the idea of God and Christ in a non-threatening, fun environment.

If you've never seen that aspect, it's hard to understand why in the world we put so much time and effort into the rest of the year. After all, if I'm not working, I'm at Club every Monday night of the school year...that's a lot of evenings away from my husband. But it's so worth it, because SOMEONE has to love on these kids. Especially the ones who come from families broken by divorce, abuse, and/or drugs.

So this weekend gave Nathan a chance to see the camp itself and get an idea of Young Life's attitude of service, not to mention a better idea of why we do what we do. I think it kind of confused several of the people there at first...Young Life camp staff has such an amazing attitude of service that even the most menial of tasks are done with joy and the smallest details are given the greatest amount of care. Yeah, the kids probably don't notice that all the salts and peppers on each dining table are arranged the exact same way, but what they do notice is the extreme care and love that goes into every aspect of their stay.

But it isn't perfection for perfection's sake...we strongly believe that if it were Christ serving the campers, setting the table, cleaning the rooms, He would lovingly see to every minute detail. So we strive to show that love through our attention to detail. And that philosophy goes beyond the hospitality of the camp. It reaches to all aspects, all resulting in the kids who arrive at camp being treated like royalty, eating at a family table for perhaps the first time in their lives, and really feeling the love of God. It's an amazing phenomenon to witness, and I always jump at the opportunity to serve at camp, to be a part of that and be reminded why it's so important to have a servant's heart.

Beyond all that, the best part of the entire weekend was getting to work along side Nathan and share a place that is so close to my heart with him. I couldn't stop telling him how much it meant to me to be able to share this weekend with him. We worked side by side all weekend, and that was such a huge blessing...it's not often we get to SERVE together. Plus it was wonderful just to get to see him for more than an hour or two each week. Graveyard shift has been hard this time around. Now I just wish that Nathan could see what an actual Young Life camp, complete with kids, looks like. It makes all the difference in the world.

So we spent the weekend busting our butts for hours on end. By the end of the day on Saturday, we were ready to collapse. Our day started at 6 am, worked non-stop until about 3, had a 2 1/2 hour break, and then worked again from 5:30 until about 8. It made for a very long day, all of it spent on our feet. Both of us worked in the dining hall, which meant cleaning up after and then setting up for over 300 people. It was exhausting work, but it was incredibly satisfying. At least it was for me...I hope Nathan feels the same way. All the ladies that worked with us in the dining hall thought Nathan was just the sweetest guy ever, especially the older ones. It was too cute. All in all, it was a good weekend.

1 comment:

The Carlsons said...

It's like deja vu all over again! ;)