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Friday, July 29, 2005

I Can't Remember a Night Like This

We have been at Camp BaYouCa all week in Upstate New York. I have been the speaker for 201 Junior Highers. We have had a blast - playing "Would You Rather" and talking about having an Extreme Makeover of their hearts. Tonight was the bonfire where kids give testimonies and talk about their week.

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A little context - I have been to a ton of camp bonfires. They usually contain some singing, some awkward silence, some thank yous to counselors and staff, some confessions of faith. They are nice once they get going. And ... they don't normally last too long.

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Tonight, however, was unlike anything I have ever experienced. Russ Warner, the camp director, led some songs and then invited the kids who had either accepted Jesus this week or who had made major decisions in their walk with the Lord to come up front and make a line where they could share into the microphone. Before he even finished, kids were shooting up to get in line. At least 25-30 campers shared in that part of the bonfire.

Then, Russ went section by section around the bonfire, asking campers to stand up and share a testimony. There was not enough time to have every camper share who wanted to! Probably 60-80 campers talked about what God had done in their lives this week. It was amazing and awe-inspiring and overwhelming. There was not a single awkward silence. There were just scores of junior high kids talking specifically about how they were going to live for God. And ... these weren't the typical camp testimonies. They talked about not lying any more, being nicer to others, forgiving people, obeying their parents. It seemed like the real and lasting kind of commitments.

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As most of you know, my love language is "words of affirmation." Listening to those kids go on and on like they did tonight, I can say that my love tank is pretty full. Yeah God.

2 comments:

A said...

Long live the "throw a faggot in the fire" ceremony.

Just in case your tank isn't completely full . . .

. . . Good Job!

Robb said...

Gladly, BaYouCa has never added that dimension to its bonfire. In fact, the bonfire itself was one of the biggest I have ever seen them make - way too big to get close enough to throw your faggot in. The sentiment was there, nonetheless.