Last Monday the 31st, I decided that I was done wasting time. With one week of camp left, I made up my mind that this was going to be the best week. I wanted to leave everything on the court, to not hold anything back. I prayed for strength for one more week, and set out to pour God's love into every single person I talked to. And God was faithful, using me in all my strengths and weaknesses to bring Him 100% of the glory.
For some reason all summer I gravitated toward the junior high camp. Kupkakes was a junior high girl, and the Zorbs are a junior high activity. So Monday morning during greeting time, I hung out by the junior high banner with Andrew, Kathleen, and one of the counselors Trisha as she waited for her campers. I knew Trisha a little bit, but while we waited and talked we found out that we have more in common than we realized before. One of those things is that we both loved making friendship bracelets! I told her that if her girls ever wanted to make friendship bracelets, I would love to join them. I gave her my phone number to text me just in time for her campers to arrive.
Later that day I got a text from Trisha, saying that her girls were making bracelets outside the cabin. Technically, Monday afternoons are my time off, but this was the last week, and I was going to take any opportunity I could to hang out with campers. I joined their cabin for the next hour or so, making bracelets and talking. None of them really knew who I was and that I was on HeartSong, and that was kind of nice to talk to them as a friend instead of a "celebrity." We talked about some of the girls' favorite camp songs, and one of the girls showed me how to make a new kind of bracelet. I was fired up for that evening's worship, and nothing was getting me down; even an argument with Tommy about junior chapel couldn't ruin my mood. After chapels, I ran into the same cabin of girls, and two of them, after hearing me play the piano in chapel, were so excited to tell me about how they were piano students in the same studio and loved playing duets together. I was SUPER excited to spend the rest of my week finding every opportunity I could to hang out with Trisha and her cabin.
The next day, I was so excited to spend lunch with Anjela watching the movie Fireproof. We had found out the week before how much we both loved that movie, so we borrowed it from a friend and watched it on her laptop in the staff room while we ate lunch. For the whole rest of the week we quoted it to each other. :) After that, I went to the Red Canoe to find some campers to hang out with and ran into Susannah’s cabin of junior girls. One of the girls had a large green slushie, and I bet her that she couldn’t finish the whole thing before craft time. At Lake Ann, betting currency comes in “woof-woofs”, or the humiliation of barking like a dog in a public place (3 “woof-woofs” means the loser has to do it 3 different times at the winner’s discretion). So I bet this girl 3 “woof-woofs” that she couldn’t finish it, and then she was determined to! Needless to say, 3 different times that week I was on all fours barking like a dog for this camper. ;) Later that evening at chapel for the juniors, I got to sing one of my favorite junior camp songs: “The Fruit of the Spirit Song!” It was one of my all-time favorites from Camp Carl, and I was so excited when the speaker requested it. That became one of my favorite junior chapel nights of the summer.
On Wednesday, I was back out at the Zorbs! Because there were so many girls, it got pretty chaotic toward the end, but I just kept on doing my favorite part: filling up the bucket and dumping cold water on unsuspecting campers in the Zorb. And, for the first time all summer, I was sneaky enough to dump a bucket on Andrew as well (I was pretty proud of myself). ;) I raced Trisha down the hill for some "woof-woofs" which made it more fun for her cabin. Trisha's entire cabin wanted me to hang out with them all the time, and every chance I got I was with them. I ate lunch with them every day and dinner with them whenever I could; I also found them before chapels to hang out and talked with them in the bathroom before breakfast. A lot of times for me ministering feels like I am being poured out and leaves me weary, but being with these girls was filling me up and energizing me, and I was so thankful for that. I loved every minute I had with them!
Thursday of this week was the culmination of an entire summer of sibling rivalry. It started with the sock prank; finally I was sneaky enough to put 8 of Will’s guitar pedals in socks and hook them back up, making it more difficult to get them all off. But if I believed in karma, I would say it caught up to me that afternoon when I went to the junior camp/junior high carnival and got 3 buckets of water dumped on me by Tommy. I was about ready to kill him by dinnertime. Then, during chapel, Dexter put a huge plastic beetle on my phone and I almost freaked out before realizing it was fake. I looked back and saw Dex and Tommy laughing, and soon after I got a text from Dex: “We’re the brothers you never had, and never wanted!” Later on, Will realized that it wasn’t Dane but me who socked his pedal board, and the next morning I walked in to find my two pedals, earbuds, and a couple of other “sock-able” things on my keyboards covered in socks. I know, I had it coming. :)
But in between all the teasing and sarcasm there were times of serious talking and love. Having Will, our class chaplain, on my team actually became really beneficial for me. Talking with him, I learned a lot about God and about myself, even by just asking him what God was teaching him. There was also a great talk about music, where I got to be the one teaching him. I never realized how much effort is needed to teach someone what a leading tone is. It was fun for me to teach him and get excited about teaching 4 students this fall.
Friday was a depressing day just because it was a day of lasts. For the last time, I worked in the snack shack with Anjela, singing marching band songs and making blizzards. For the last time I sang “Romans 16:19” for junior chapel, after which I ran out of the room to pray hard that God would put me on this team again next year. For the last time, I worshipped with my HeartSong Green Team, and as we ended the service with an encore, we played the chorus of “You Deserve” about 7 times because we didn’t want to be done.
But because it was the last time for everything, I made the most of every moment. I had chosen to make this the best week ever, and I had done it. Even Friday night, when I’m normally headed to bed, I peeked my head into Trisha’s cabin to hang out with her girls one more time. I cherished every moment I had, took advantage of every opportunity, and prayed that God would shine through everything I did. I ended the week satisfied that I had given it my all and not held anything back. I had finished the race, and I could end the summer with a joyful conscious.