The leaves are taking flight here at Rockmont, having reached their peak colors in the last couple weeks! Even as I write, the wind is carrying away our leaves to resting places all over camp and beyond. Our trees will soon appear bare and enter a long winter’s rest before returning with new growth in the Spring. This cycle of changing, taking leave, and later returning is reflected in our work with campers and staff. This summer camp has a way of changing people, of growing them, sending them off into new adventures, and then drawing them back again.
After a fulfilling summer, one person who was filled with God’s love and then took leave from this place was Dave Gardner. Perhaps you remember his news articles posted on our website this past summer, saturated with a deep love for Rockmont and a strong understanding of the power of the summer camp experience. Dave who has been spending his summers at Rockmont for well over a decade is also a recent University of Florida graduate. Having completed school and with a burning desire in his heart to freely give what has been given to him in abundance, Dave recently set out on The World Race to share God’s love abroad and will be serving in 11 countries over the course of the next 11 months.
Just recently, we had the opportunity to catch up with Dave via Skype. Over the last couple weeks, Dave has been building strong working relationships with his fellow mission team members as well as getting settled into the Rosa de Amor orphanage in San Lucas, Guatemala. Dave’s primary work has been a combination of teaching Bible classes as well as leading praise and worship songs with his new travel guitar. He’s even taught the children at the orphanage a few of the Holy Motions we do during Evening Watch at camp. There are now children in Guatemala who know “Ants Marching.” Besides teaching and leading songs, a huge part of Dave’s work is simply playing with and loving on the children at the home. That’s the most fulfilling part for Dave and his team members! Dave has also had some opportunity for adventure. When he returns, you will have to ask him about roasting marshmallows atop a Guatemalan volcano.
This is just one story of a Rockmonter taking leave from camp and doing something good for the world. Others are impacting their homes, neighborhoods, and larger communities right where they live. It can be hard for us all to spend so much of the year apart, but we know that God is working in and through Rockmonters wherever they are. When we see one another again in the summer, it will be exciting to see where the Spirit carried each one of us during the Fall, Winter, and Spring months that separate our summers here. Looking forward to hearing your story before long!
Follow Dave’s journey around the world at http://davidgardner.theworldrace.org/. Stay tuned for more updates on God’s work in and through the lives of the Rockmont family both in the United States and abroad.