I want to start off this post with an apology for not posting as often as I probably should, but if you haven’t gathered by now, I’m not a professional blogger. But these past 6 weeks deserve a post. If you don’t know whats been going on in my life or what I’m talking about, allow me to just fill you in a little. On the 31st of June I flew out to the beautiful state of Colorado on Summer Project with CRU. For those of you who aren’t in college or aware of what CRU stands for, it short for Campus Crusades, a Christian organization that’s making its way on campuses all over the world. But back to Colorado….My best friend, Madeline, and I decided freshman year that we wanted to join CRU and head to the mountains of CO to run a camp for elementary, middle, and high schoolers. And we did just that…and more! When we first got to Denver, we only knew each other and had only briefly texted some of the staff on project, all other students and staff were unknown by us. We flew into Denver and were driven to Sun Valley, where we meet the rest of the staff and other counselors. There were 11 girls and 6 guys on student staff and a good handful on staff, all wonderful and beautiful people both inside and out. As meeting anyone for the first time goes, it was…awkward…at first. For some inevitable reason, there’s always this girls on one side, boys on the other side kind of thing going on. No one, yet everyone, at the same time wanting to be that brave soul who mingles with the opposite gender…I mean we are 18-25 years old here after all, I think boys have finally grown out of their coodies stage. But we eventually got around to meeting everyone and in no time we were a tight knit family. No lie. We still have a group message going on even with everyone back home and in the different parts of the country.
In just 6 weeks, these fearfully and wonderfully made humans became my brothers and sisters who I’d come to do life with and share so much of my soul with. From white water rafting in 42 degree waters, to camping in the woods, to dealing with little middle schoolers calling you “G” every 5 seconds, to backpacking through the mountains, to adventures to Garden of the Gods, Rocky Mountains, and nearby towns, to 5 AM sunrise hikes, to mens and womens times, to banquets, to Who’s Line is it Anyways game nights, to deep, intentional conversations about who we are, what we are here for, whose we are, and just living in His presence, these 16 other counselors quickly became family. Out at Long Scraggy, or Long Swaggy as we like to call it, 17 strangers instantly became one, united family.
And then our kids came along, and all hell broke loose…Kidding! First week of camp was High School week…the DREAM! I’m convinced they start us off with the best week so we don’t go running away before the summer’s over… Vernon Jones spoke high school week about what it looked like to live a life completely surrendered to Christ. His talks really gave us counselors a layout for how to live our lives, especially the next few weeks, completely for God, being that selfless friend, that servant-hearted leader, that intentional comforter, and simply trying to be Jesus with skin on in all circumstances. Throughout middle school week, all of us counselors and staff were tested beyond our earthly strengths and experienced some of the hardest spiritual warfare, but learned to solely rely of God and His provisions to get us through everything that was thrown at us that week. And by God’s power alone, we had another successful week of camp! And to close camp out, we ended with elementary week! After middle school week, all of elementary week was a breeze! We had perfected our lesson plans, the daily activities, the meals, the events, everything ran smoothly and the children were precious! My sweet cabin of three girls loved to sleep…I wasn’t going to complain about that one bit…I appreciate a nap just as much as the next baby.
To wrap up the entire Urban Summit Adventure Summer Project, we had a week of debriefing. Starting off with what was supposed to be a 3 day backpacking trip that turned into a 1 day backpacking trip due to rain and storms in the mountains. The week and summer was then concluded with a celebratory banquet! But throughout the 6 weeks that I was in Colorado, I learned some very essential things that I’d like to leave with you….
1. Being intentional is vital for any relationship of any kind.
2. North Carolina is a flat state compared to the 14ers that surrounded me daily in Colorado.
3. God uses broken people to be His hands and feet.
4. I don’t need to know everything.
5. Prayer is powerful and necessary.
6. His timing in things can blow your mind.
7. Being without wifi, cell service, or any kind of outside communication is refreshing. Also getting actual letters in the mail is way more exciting than a text or email.
8. High elevations makes you out of breath easily and gives you a lot of gas. We liked to call them the “alti-toodies.”
9. Friends of a lifetime can be made in just 6 weeks.
10. The walk in the middle of the night, in the middle of the woods, to the bath house, is one of the scariest things.
And one final thing I’d like to add before concluding this post is a massive THANK YOU to everyone who helped this trip happen! I’d like to thank everyone who donated money and to those who encouraged me and prayed for me and the camp! I know it sounds cliche, but it honestly couldn’t have happened with out you, so thank you! This trip has taught me so many life long lessons and brought me so many life long friends and brought several people to making life long decisions to follow and know Christ, so for all of those blessings I thank you for being a part of it all!