Faith, Hope, and Love

One Bible verse that always struck a chord within me was 1 Corinthians 13:13, which reads: “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” It’s a classic verse seen on paintings, bracelets, and read at thousands of weddings. Up until now, I have always agreed with it. Love is a very powerful force which should be valued. Love can do amazing things.

However, this summer, I have been overcome with hope. I have met youth at camps all over the summer who give me hope for their generation, for the world, and for our church. This was really apparent at the Pacific Southwest Region’s CYF 1 Camp at the idyllic Loch Leven Conference Center. As our keynoter was leaving, he spoke about how we wished the campers would take what they had learned back “down the mountain” from camp. He played the song “Beautiful Things” by Gungor. The lyrics spoke to everyone in the room, and really touched me.

All around
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found in You

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

The campers I met this summer have been through things that I cannot imagine. They face the challenges of suicide, depression, abandonment, economic struggles, and more. Yet they still came to camp. They still gave up a week of summer to be with people who they hoped would love them and support them. They allowed themselves to be changed by God and be made into something beautiful.

I feel that our society has grossly misunderstood and underestimated these young people. I have seen firsthand that they are intelligent, dedicated, passionate, and driven. At all camps, we talked about how much camp was like an “escape” and not the “real world.” I couldn’t help but think about what it would be like if camp was the norm? What if our churches could recreate the feeling we experience at camp? We could have such an amazing community full of life completely run by young people.

Faith was apparent this summer at camp. Love was abundant. But hope – hope truly stood out at the greatest of these.





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