I spent the last three weeks serving at Young Life’s Woodleaf camp in northern California. It was an incredible experience which I’m still processing. On our last night together the camp director offered everyone the opportunity to stand up and say what they had learned over the last few weeks. A college age guy stood up and said, “I feel like I came here a boy and I’m leaving a man.”
I’m not sure exactly what he meant by this but let me tell you how I grew up in three weeks at Young Life camp.
I grew up in California because of Jesus in people. It wasn’t just through spending time with people but through the opportunity they gave me to invest in their lives and stories and their willingness to invest in me. We grew together, served together, cleaned smelly cabins together, laughed (a lot) together, cried together, watched for shooting stars together, loved leaders and campers together and, most of importantly, were changed by Jesus together.
We created memories.
We shared real life.
You don’t leave an experience like this unchanged. Jesus tends to have that effect on people. I could tell you I was once this way and now I’m another way but that’s not the point. The point is when you’re given the opportunity to DO life with people, take it. It’s not always easy. Actually, it’s often times incredibly hard but it’s always worth it.