How can I compare camps? All of them are amazing in their own ways and by only being there for a week, I get a very limited, yet unique view of these DOC church camps. But to ask me, which camp I like best? Well that is a nearly impossible question to answer.
This past week, I have had the opportunity to visit Camp Couchdale in Hot Springs, Arkansas. I needed this camp. I had a rough weekend of travel getting to Little Rock, AR, and doubted myself and was worried I wasn’t making the impact I had hoped. If anyone knows me, you know that I want to save the world. I want to be the advocate for the rights of humans everywhere and I want to find where I fit in in this world. I know that’s a very utopian idea, but it’s my passion. I like sharing my passion with High School students and I love the DPF Internship because I can do what I love to do and discuss the issues I want others to know about. This is an amazing opportunity and each camp brings me new experiences and closer to where I think God wants me to be.
But this week, I really felt that I was right on track. This was the most restorative and rejuvenating week of my summer. I felt closer to God than I think I have in the past 4-5 years and I saw Him in every person I met. These people; in a state I rarely think about, with weird bugs that I learned to despise, who sing and dance and praise God uninhibited, were the kindest and most inspirational group of Disciples. They all had their own stories of how they got to where they are today and even though many are still searching for their place, they inspired me to do, and be better.
The theme of the week was “What Do You Think?” and everything focused on developing our own opinions and thoughts about our beliefs and faith. This theme coupled with my topic of the week went together flawlessly as I challenged the campers to think critically about Hunger and Poverty.
I led a workshop on Hunger and Poverty to the whole group and many of the facts I shared surprised a few of the campers. As we discussed all of the obstacles people face around the world and in our own country, these smart young adults came up with solutions that could easily be implemented in their homes. I was so proud of the group for taking these issues seriously and for their interest in making a change, even a small one in their own communities.
By understanding the challenges that plague the world, we are able to make real changes. Everything starts small but by speaking with so many youth about these social justice issues, I am confident that this generation will be the drivers of change and acceptance in our communities.
Thank you Arkansas for helping me to find a place where I could be me, and for challenging me to look at my faith and figure out what I think.