I am not sure how to pronounce “hiatus”. Perhaps that’s why I’m more confident writing it than saying it. If I were to describe my absence from the blogging habit, I would not describe it as a hiatus for fear of mis-pronouncing it. But watch me use it here 5 times fast. Er, three.
The past two weeks have been at Riverside. It’s amazing to be back. Whenever I “leave” I don’t really think of it being the last time at camp because God hasn’t shut the door. The people here remain centered in Christ, the ministry is thriving, the land nostalgic. To think that Riverside was just getting on its feet again when I came in 1999 (well, it was getting on its feet again a little before that) is mind-blowing. The impact was lifelong, I’m sure. Though my memory of exactly what happened during a recharge in seventh grade, it stuck in my mind as being significant. I still remember the cool track sweatshirt club the kids from our church (and school) formed, how we volunteered for dish crew, that we listened to a song called Nothing Back (which may have been 8th grade), that on Sunday morning we did a west side story “skit” with another cabin, that Jason read a story from Jesus Freaks. I remember a bit of God time and cabin stuff, camp store chilling and playing in the rec hall (air hockey with Jay, not that he remembers).
And here I am. 12 years later…nearly.
Notes, hand-written in particular mean so much to me, and I have to just insert a quick comment about a couple that I got this week. I am removed from the general camp staff population most of the day due to the nature of my role this summer (preparing day camp stuff, these last two weeks). I’ve been hoping to get in some community time with folks, but my “old” age and exhaustion doesn’t keep me up much past share groups and you can only get so close to people in large group setting. We’ve done staff prayer a little differently in training than we have in the previous three years of my employment. Rather than praying over each staff member once as an entire staff, we’ve broken off into small groups and prayed for one another nightly. I wasn’t really thinking of community connection in that prayer time initially, but I think its been the strongest connections I have made with staff so far (at least for this summer, and at least as far as meeting new staff). My note writers were in my prayer circles. Cool.
I’ve been bathed in prayer by people I love and admire these last two weeks. I’ve been reading through Desiring God (very slowly, tragically I admit to you), Prodigal God (almost done!), and The Bible itself and realizing that prayer and praise have nothing to do with obligation. It’s to be spontaneous and overflowing (which I have phrased to sound like an obligation). Although I am not completely free of the bonds of self-imposed “obligation”, I am able to remember more frequently the privilege it is to take delight in the Lord…it’s good stuff.
I was very disappointed to miss the presentation of the skits and theme verses by the counseling staff today. I did catch one while I was running a quick errand to my team in the chapel (who were watching) and it was really funny. I praise God for people who write skits well and have success in communicating humorously and accurately the designed theme. I openly admit I am not one of those people (my humor is too subtle to evoke fits of laughter from large audiences…and small) and writing skits is about as easy as knitting left-handed in the dark with homespun yarn on size 3 needles. Which is to say, a total breeze, right? Ha.
I have some serious props to give and thanks to write to a host of people. My intention was to do that now…but it’s about 20 minutes until the mime. Last night in the RC tonight (if you have a twin mattress you are considering throwing away, I am almost certain it would be worth your while to donate it to Riverside so the one I’ve been sleeping on can be thrown away. http://www.riversidelbc.org for contact information 😉 ). I’m thankful for the free board and room, but am looking forward to the luxuries of home.
Grace to you, and Peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,