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Welcoming Freedom Home

Thursday, June 25th 2015

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.” Galatians 5:1.

What does it mean for a camper to grow while he is at camp? For that matter, what does it mean for any of us to grow? While there are certainly many aspects to growth….many directions it takes us….we are told in the book of Galatians that freedom is the destination to set our sights on. That is where our God is calling us. That is the gift He is offering us.

This idea resonates strongly with our experience at Rockmont. We are surrounded by growth and the fruit turns out to be joyful freedom. You can see it and hear it increase over the course of a camp session….more kind words, more consideration and respect exchanged between the campers, more smiles, more laughter. Chains of fear and self-obsession fall away. We are no longer held captive by comfort, or it has at least loosened its grip. We can have fun in the rain. We can smile at bug bites. We can be thankful even when a meal does not include an item we are accustomed to. We don’t run to the front of the line. We listen. We recognize God is in control. Our focus shifts from ourselves to God and the people around us and suddenly life becomes a whole lot more interesting.

Life became more interesting for Bear Campers this morning as they exercised their physical and creative muscles while playing “How to Train Your Dragon 2.” After watching the movie the night before, they used their imaginations to bring the story to life in one of Camp’s vast open spaces called the “Golf Course.” Once home to a small course maintained for campers and staff, the area is now sprinkled with enormous old Hemlock trees that provide perfect strategic cover for capture-the-flag and the myriad other games played there.

Deer Campers stretched their muscles and spirits this morning while waking up outside and cooking breakfast over a campfire. Last night was their second night of camping outside over the past two weeks – parents get ready to welcome home seasoned mountain men! This afternoon all of Camp dove into afternoon skills. Campers continued to spread their wings by diligently practicing their chosen skills. As they learned to hit their mark, roll a kayak, throw clay on a pottery wheel, or build a lean-to shelter from fallen timber, new worlds opened up.

This evening was full of great fun under a glorious mountain sky. The Birch Tribe launched themselves down the 150 foot slip-n-slide on aptly named “Inspiration Point,” before heading to the waterfront for an evening swim. The Buckeyes made plaques to commemorate their cabins while munching on S’mores. Afterwards they joined the Birch Tribe on the waterfront. The Hickory Tribe threw themselves into the classic game of battle ball. The Hemlocks played disc golf. Our oldest campers in Mountain Camp played a nighttime version of capture-the-flag that was “camp-wide.” If the streams, hills, buildings, and trees didn’t already provide enough cover to keep things interesting, the setting sun surely did!

We encourage you to prepare yourself to welcome home a son that has experienced more freedom. Such freedom often fosters a desire for greater independence and responsibility, and our reaction as parents can be mixed. Growing pains are not limited to muscles or children. If they occur, take them in stride and continue moving towards freedom alongside your child.

Thank you for partnering with us in this worthwhile work. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance. See you very soon.

Inspired to be at Camp,
Josh

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