Meals are quite the event for our group. Every time you put down your cup or the pitcher you have to double tap it. If someone catches you not double-tapping than you have to either chug the rest of the drink or complete a dare. This group was all about the dares and making them more hilarious each meal.
I love the outrageous games on the Shirley Show that took our camp trip "to the next level." Rhett was an awesome "L" in this spelling bee. As teams scored points their leader would be raised higher in the air to represent their score.
Mike shared the story of Christ with us all week at the end of each club. He explained things in a totally new way that made faith something easy to understand and totally relevant. I think the clips from Hugo Cabaret and the Hunger Games will stick with us and help us remember how God created us and why Jesus took our place. I really loved the fish tank metaphor he used to talk about filling our lives up with junk and covering up with all these filters. But Christ covers over that and cleans us from the inside out. He didn't just come to fix our lives but came so that we may live life to the full. Sometimes it's messy but a life that is full of adventure, friends, risk, challenges, joy, laughter, growth, fun and God is absolutely worth it.
Saturday morning we got ready for the Timber Wolf Redneck Yacht Club and shined up our teeth real pretty like.
We also practiced our "Want to be friends?" faces just in case we met anyone cool.
I'm so thankful for people like Hannah that I've gotten to lead but have also been such an inspiration in my own life. I'm so excited for her to find her niche at Purdue this year as she grows in community there. I'm so thankful for Haley, Brooke, Haleigh and Libby--these girls that have brought so much joy into my life in the past two years and I'm so thankful for time to get to just hang out and talk with each of them.
This whole group is full of rock-stars and I wish we could stay here together for another week.
We cheered on the green team--some individual and some group events.
Helen was our blobee and she flew through the air.
Mark tried to have the most painful landing off the rope swing.
I was really impressed when our girls went out for synchronized swimming and made up their routine on the spot.
If they've got each other, they'll do anything goofy or slightly embarrassing. The surprising thing was their routine was still one of the very best.
We got to have a nacho feast of a picnic on the island once all the competitions were over.
Then it was our turn to go tubing.
We got pulled behind a jet ski in donuts around the lake. We all sat backwards and most of us went extreme speed.
I got to take turns with both Haleigh and Hannah--we held on for dear life and screamed the whole time. It was pretty awesome.
I loved that all of our guys decided to go play whiffle ball together during free time.
When we decided to go on this trip for sure we didn't know how many kids would sign up. I had high hopes but knew that only a few of them had ever even heard of Young Life before and it was only a few months notice. But God is faithful and the sign-ups came pouring in.
We ended up with this crew of 42 people who had one of the best weeks of their life together. I'm so excited to see where we'll go from here. Who knows what Campaigners or Club might look like this year? What other kids will leaders meet? Which friends will this group invite to join in? How many will go to camp next summer?
With a team of leaders like this, and a supportive committee back at home, I'm confident that great things will happen.
I love that all of this doesn't have to stop here. That Haleigh and I can keep having one on ones and being goofy and weird together. That I can go get Orange Leaf with Haley and Libby or go watch their soccer games. Because God has called me here I get to live life with these girls and share my life and my faith with them.
This trip has been one of my favorite parts of this summer. I had high expectations but couldn't have predicted this greatness.
I'm so thankful for Hannah and Katy,
Haley and Ali Bell,
Helen and Ashley,
Hannah and HayBut,
Kate and Haleigh,
and Brooke and Libby.
This whole trip I think we were just brimming over with excitement and energy and joy that everything was so awesome and so fun and so great.
I love this cabin of girls. Dream team.
We got to know a girl named Rainbow Dash (red striped shirt with hat) this week and I know we'll remember her creativity, servant heart and kindness. I loved getting to hang out with the 7th grade girls and am so glad I'll see them in the halls next year.
On our last night together we went from Club to 15 minutes. Everyone spread out all over camp to have 15 minutes to think about their own relationship with God. They wrote a letter to God or a letter of what they thought God might write to them.
It was so cool to see everyone doing this at the exact same time and because of cabin times and 1 on 1 talks to know that so many people's relationships with God have grown.
Then it was time to embrace our last night at camp. At the Blue Ox they have something called the Paul Bunyan. For $15 you get a giant skillet filled with cookies, ice-cream, whip cream, M & Ms, kit-kat, chocolate syrup, butter fingers and cherries.
All the Pine girls dug in and destroyed ours in three minutes. Then the boys split two Paul Bunyans and the girls cheered them on. They even drank the melted ice-cream from the skillet at the end.
We all hung out on the basketball court playing knock out and gorilla. There was an open mic on the beach stage and both Rhett and Mark got to perform in front of everyone. When it was time for bed one of the Work Crew girls brought us a late night snack and shared her testimony with us. After she left the girls asked Hannah and I to share our stories too. I love that these girls are searching and want to know more. I hope these questions will continue back at home.