Tuesday, July 31, 2012

And then he moved...

Last week I was gone at youth camp in Oregon.  It was hot.  Not like Texas hot, but still hot.  Especially for this Northwest-adapted girl who loves her year-round cool weather.  The worst part was being indoors.  Outdoors it was beautiful.  And then I would walk into the auditorium filled with 370 teenagers (and their b.o.) and 80 adults who are on their feet praising Jesus in song (which was beautiful).  But it was like hitting a wall of funk and heat.  I'm sure you can imagine.  It was gross.

Nonetheless it turned out to be a good week.  Which I didn't really expect.  Speaking honestly, I didn't want to be there.  I love our youth to death.  I do.

But I didn't realize how hard it would be to be a newlywed, married less than 2 months, and be gone for another week at camp.  Call me a wimp, but I desperately missed my husband while I was gone and had a really hard time leaving him in the first place.

And there was this voice inside of me saying, "Is this really worth your time?  Really??  Are these youth really going to get anything out of this?  Is it really worth the money that our church gave so generously for us to go?  Or will they just walk away completely unchanged and unaffected and unmoved?  Is it worth being away from Matthew and losing the week away from work?  Is it really worth it?"

So that's how I started camp.  Skeptical and a little irritated - I had allowed myself to be convinced it wasn't worth my time.

And then God moved.

Just like that.

It didn't take long (like, just a few hours) for the Holy Spirit to spiritually slap me in the face with his ability to move people and change hearts.  I saw some of our youth make steps in their faith-walks that I never would have imagined.  I saw our youth - the whole group - weeping together as they prayed for one another out of love and compassion for what God was doing in their lives individually and collectively (which, inevitably, made me weep in response).  I saw leaders rise up and counsel other youth. And I saw them still living out on Sunday morning some of the life-changes we talked about during the week!  (*Whose youth are these?!*)

And I heard the Lord asking, "Why did you ever doubt me, my sweet child?"  Not rebuking me, but reminding me that this is what he does.

I felt so humbled.  And I'm so grateful to have had that week at camp with our youth group.  I feel so privileged to be a part of what God is doing in their lives.  And I'm really going to work at opening my heart so that those spiritual face slaps happen a little less often.

me with my youth gang
And, on another upside, I had plenty of down time while I was there (didn't expect that, did ya?) and have a whole list of things I'd like to blog about in the near future.  So get ready - this could get exciting.

No comments: