Monday, July 16, 2012

A Rock, A Lake, and A Camper

The sunlight warmed his skin and reflected off a thousand ripples in the surface of the lake as Jeffrey listened to the words of his Cabin Director. It was Wednesday morning cabin devotions. A full day of camp lay before them, but right now Jeffrey’s mind was on the past. He gazed at the rock in his hand and recalled what his Cabin Director had said moments earlier: “I want you to imagine that all the things that have caused pain in your life—all the things that burden your mind—are in that rock.”

Jeffrey had a lot of pain to fit into that rock. In his mind he could still hear the sound of his drunken father beating on the door late at night while his mother warned him and his siblings to not open the door, no matter what. Those memories blurred into the sharper image of his father’s death which he had witnessed first hand, and Jeffrey cringed. Before the tears could form in his eyes, he shifted his thoughts to the dog his father had left them—the only good thing his father had left them. But memories of coming home from school one day to find the dog that he loved mauled to death soon followed. That’s a lot of pain. Could it even fit into such a small rock?

“Now,” the Cabin Director spoke again as each camper looked up from the rock in his own hand, “if you believe that God wants to take away your pain, and you’re willing to give your burdens to Him, I want you to throw your rock into the lake.”

Jeffrey’s entire cabin stood at the same time, but Jeffrey barely noticed the others. He took one good look at the sparkling surface of the lake and gripped the rock tightly. He needed this. He was ready for this. With all the strength his 14-year old arm could muster, he chucked the rock high and long. A full two seconds later, it crashed into the water, never to be seen again.

But it didn’t even take that long for the peace to come. As soon as the rock left his hand, Jeffrey felt it. The burden was lifted. Relief flooded his mind, and Jeffrey found rest for his soul.

“The whole rest of that day, I couldn’t stop smiling,” he later told me. “I just felt like God was telling me that everything was going to be okay.”

Jeffrey is just one example of the many lives that are being impacted at South Mountain Christian Camp this summer. His experience was only possible because someone provided the scholarship funds needed to sponsor him.

If you would like to sponsor a camper like Jeffrey, you can use the PayPal button below to pay with your credit card, or visit our website here to get more information.