Today I got to be reunited with some (not all, sadly) of my fellow staffers that I got the incredible privilege to serve with this last summer at UGM Camp, after not being able to see them for four straight months! Its hard when you spend practically every minute together for an entire summer, and then go to not seeing each other at all for a long period of time. These people are like my second family. I have never felt so loved and accepted and at home with any other group of people in my life. They carry with them a certain sense of hope and life wherever they go. They bare the forgiveness of Christ in their hearts which shows through in a humility that is undeniable. Each of them show love in their own unique way–whether it is by selflessly serving, making people laugh, encouraging others constantly, or just always being a positive presence. These people do all of these things and more. They are open to the leading of Christ and they listen for His gentle guidance in their life. They jump at the chance to serve or make someone feel loved, and they loved me in such a way that I discovered things about myself that I never knew before. They fully accepted me, faults and all, and they made me feel treasured. They made me feel like I was capable. They believed in me. We believed in each other. We encouraged each other and spurred each other on to try new things and conquer the fears that have festered for years. Together we tried more things than we ever have before. We lead groups of kids through activities which pointed them to Jesus, we prayed together, worshipped together, laughed together, cried together, teased each other endlessly, ate mountains of junk food, climbed mountains, gave each other nicknames, camped out in the middle of a forest, went star gazing almost every night, tried and failed miserably at volleyball, handled a fire evacuation, and so much more. After just the first day, we had all become a family. I have never experienced anything quite like it, and doubt I ever will again. These people are filled to the brim with Jesus and have His love coursing through their vanes, and somehow I got the incredible privilege of spending a summer with them. I am just so blessed. I hope someday that everyone from staff can have a reunion, but until then, I love each and every one of you more than you will ever know. You have blessed my life beyond measure and I can’t wait to create many more precious memories and share many more laughs before this life is over. Love always,
I just had to share two photos today because they were both so good I couldn’t pick one. Enjoy!