Sunday is my favorite day at camp, and it is truly a day like no other in the camp schedule. While other days have schedules that repeat a few times throughout the session, Sundays have their own unique rhythm and rhyme. Sundays are set apart as something different, something a little slower, and definitely something sacred. This is also such a meaningful day because we have officially passed the halfway point for this session. With only five days left and so much already completed, this is a day of reflection and of spiritual and physical rejuvenation.
Sundays are slower, and that means more time. With the latest wake-up time (8:45) of the session, that means more time to sleep for our counselors and older campers. For our younger guys, a late wake-up means more time in the morning to qualify for the Rockmont Disc Golf Open, play Thunderball, and catch more fish. At 9:00, breakfast begins, and just like the rest of the day, it is unique. As the campers come in singing “Rise and Shine,” their eyes are fixated on the box of Krispy Kreme Donuts that are awaiting them at their tables. This is a day when the classic buffet fair is overlooked for the most part, as campers choose an alternative “delicacy” for their breakfast meal.
After a leisurely breakfast, campers head back to their cabins for an extended cabin cleanup. Unlike other days where campers must rush to get everything just right in order to win a trip to the Cola Stop, on Sundays, campers have the opportunity to slow down and focus on the details they may not normally have time for. After cleaning their cabins as perfectly as they can, the tribal directors arrive in the cabin for a firsthand inspection. This is a great moment for a lot of affirmation of hard work and a chance for some growth as well.
Once cabin cleanup has come to a close, the three camps (Bear, Deer, and Mountain) each go to camper church. While a typical Morning Watch may last about 15 minutes, we take a little more time to focus on worship, scripture, and our brothers around us on this day. This is one of the most amazing parts of camp as the campers are joined together in their individual churches and sharing in the love, grace, and freedom that comes with such a sacred space. There is also time to be silent and reflect back over a jam-packed seven days. After a little time to relax after church, campers were treated to some baked chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans, and rolls—a Sunday tradition.
Another Sunday tradition is the chance to rejuvenate. After a morning of spiritual rejuvenation, campers and staff are given the chance to physically rejuvenate during an extended rest period. After seven days of extreme adventure and fun, this rest is much needed and prized by all. After the end of rest period, campers were treated to another special surprise: Sunday Sundaes! While I could not tell you how many times I was asked why there was no dessert at lunch today, I can tell you that everyone felt the wait was well worth it once they arrived at our Sunday Sundae bar. Between chocolate, vanilla and strawberry ice cream, and oreos, cherries, sprinkles, graham crackers, chocolate syrup, M&Ms, and more, there were a lot of happy faces (covered in chocolate syrup and ice cream) on the Lakeside lawn this afternoon!
After a relaxed period of ice cream eating and socializing, camp returned to a more structured activity time. Bear Camp went with their counselors and enjoyed cabin-specific activity time, Deer Camp played Transformers on lower camp, and Mountain Camp enjoyed some time in the sun with a round of H2O Olympics at the Waterfront. The extra time around rest period, ice cream, and activities also gave our counselors a chance to speak into the growth they have seen in your campers. On an individual basis, counselors took time today to sit down with every camper and talk about a specific instance that stuck out to them that showed love, grace, maturity, leadership, or a willingness to serve. These conversations are the basis of our mission at camp, and one of the main ways that growth is encouraged to continue. Our counselors will follow up with their campers as the session continues and will single out one of these stories of growth to share with the entire tribe at the end of the session.
Following in the theme of the day, our last meal is a picnic setting on the Lakeside lawn. Campers are treated to the beautiful view of the Black Mountains over the waterfront and to a couple of tasty corn dogs too! The day was wrapped with a night spent on the mountain for council. During this council, we reflected again on specific stories of growth shown by campers and were rejuvenated by the Word of God shared in the middle of his stunning creation.
Sundays are slower at camp, and that is a good thing. In life, it is so incredibly easy to get caught up in what we are doing and miss all the things that are going on around us. At camp, Sundays are a chance to not miss it. A chance to not miss the growth happening in others and ourselves, to remember seven days filled with new adventures, and to be thankful that we serve a God who is so incredibly, graciously loving to us. I hope your Sunday was as relaxing, rejuvenating, and reflective as ours was. There is so much beauty, joy, and inspiration in the world around us if we will just slow down and take a little time to notice. Don’t miss it.
In absolute gratitude,
Today’s Bible Story…
Story: Joseph Loves his Enemies (Brothers)
Scripture: Genesis 45:4-15
+Where do you see yourself in the story?
+What is the Good News?