Throughout the week, I observed the staff of MM genuinely caring for all 130 kids despite sleep deprivation & pure exhaustion. I was deeply impressed by their compassion & natural leadership and it filled me with hope to witness these young adults growing into leaders who will greatly impact our world.
This summer has been filled with incredible experiences & opportunities, but the highlight for me was speaking at Camp Mission Meadows a few weeks ago. While there, I encountered young adults who poured their strength & hearts into kids all summer long. I met emerging leaders who desire to change the world for good through serving, loving, and leading first at a camp on Chautauqua Lake.
As each summer draws to a close, the camp directors collect & compile articles/shout-outs/thoughts from camp speakers to encourage the staff who are returning home. This summer, we had the incredible privilege of falling into that category, and here is the blurb I emailed for the Staff’s “Mission Bell” newsletter.
“Word up Mission Meadows Staff! Thank you so much for hosting Taylor & I last week. We had a blast with you, and were so impressed with your love and way with the kids. Thank you for spending your summer working incredibly hard, putting up with difficult kids & people, and pouring yourselves into camp. You have such gifts for serving and loving kids, and you’ve made memories for them that they’ll never forget. Hold tight to your friendships and your experiences at camp. They will help shape your future.
Some of you may be heading back to school, or some of you may be heading out into the “real world”. Either way, here’s what you can count on. Outside of camp there is a lot of uncertainty, and whether you’re still in college, or starting a new job, there will be a lot of decisions to make, and paths to take. And it’s scary. We are headed to Colombia on September 20 with very little knowledge of what our life will be like there. What I want to know in the midst of uncertainty are the things I can count on. Here’s one thing that will never change.
Whether it’s ending a relationship you know is bad for you, or a decision to stick to your values. The older you get, the more life you have to look back on, and the less regrets you want to live with. You will be faced with all kinds of choices, and in some cases, you’ll meet a crossroads. Choose God’s way. Every time. You’ll never regret it.
Pray about it. Then do something.
Face the uncertainty and choose. Even if things don’t work out the way you first imagined, you will learn something, and your life will be more interesting than it was before. God has promised in Heb. 13:5b “I will never leave you or forsake you” no matter what. You may be surprised when one choice that didn’t turn out the way you hoped, leads to something else, something better than you first imagined. And you’ll walk away with a boatload of lessons.Finally, choosing can be a tough job. Deciding is difficult. You may second guess yourself. A lot. You may receive counsel from friends and family pressuring you to decide in their favor. Ultimately, you must decide for yourself and your future.
Choose and trust.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart. It’s not all on your shoulders. Your God is here to help carry the weight of your choices and give you understanding when the outcome is unknown. Remember Him in all you do, and He will lead you to true success.
Whatever choices you face in the future, my prayer is that you will choose God’s way to lead an interesting life, and trust Him completely in all that you do.
I treasure the memories of you all at camp with hopes that I’ll see you again at Mission Meadows someday. God bless you and the choices that lie ahead of you!”