Monday was packed with all sorts of great adventures and experiences! We started at the horse barn working on basic riding principles. Yesterday, I.G. Had some anxiety about getting on a horse, however, it was fun to see how excited I.G. was to see his horse today…he ran to the barn ahead of all the other boys and waited at the gate for the staff. After horses, 13 year old Jalen met the boys at the skate park to teach them how to skateboard. One of the boys asked if skateboarding was his life, Jalen’s answer: “God is always first, skateboarding is second.”
After skateboarding, the boys learned how to shoot a bow and arrow at the archery range.
Later in the evening, Pastor Randy Don Giovanni (www.randydon.org) stopped out at camp to speak to the boys about their experiences and how the events they experience in life help to shape them. Randy told the biblical story of the paralytic who was lowered through a roof to see Jesus. His exciting and energetic approach kept the boys engaged and entertained while teaching them life lessons and showing passion for the only true life changer- Jesus Christ!
We finished the night with a game of GaGa ball. During the game, KV was tagged out and he felt cheated. His feelings were hurt and he walked away from the circle teared up. While he was sitting alone away from the circle, DA walked over to him, sat down next to him, placed his arm around him, and asked if he was ok. These are boys from two totally different lives. They didn’t know each other before camp; and now, they are learning that each of them is struggling in similar ways….that similarity is beginning to bring them together! This display of love showed a huge step in the right direction for this group. As others saw this, they too began to come around KV in support.
When we got back to the cabin, I was reading blog comments to the teens and as I was reading to our Junior Leader TA, I began to read a comment from my wife about my son, Patrick. Here is what I read:
As as I began to read this comment, I pictured my son on his knees praying for TA and I began to sob. As I struggled to get words out, tears running down my face, I began to feel hands on my shoulder. First one hand, then a second, and before I knew it, the whole group was circled around me comforting me. In John 15: 9-17 Jesus is talking to his disciples about the the vine and branches, teacher and student, mentor and mentees, he finished by telling them that they are no longer his servants, but are his friends. That is how I felt last night. These boys are my friends and they care about me just like I care about them.