Yesterday evening was our high ropes course challenge. The boys all did great in pushing themselves and challenging themselves. Da challenged himself by getting up there even though he was afraid of only making it halfway up. As nervous as he was he still made it on to one of the platform challenges all the way at the top. This was huge for him to push himself past his fear and see what he is capable of. Now he has the challenge of applying that strength and determination to his life at home and school and I know he can do it.
DC and JF of course went straight up and flew through the course having a blast. We did challenge them to let go of the rope a little more and trust their support lines. I think it was a great lesson for them to slow down and let go in order to trust others to be in control including God who is our ultimate provider and protector.
We saw a huge amount of courage and trust in K A on the high ropes course. He was one of the most fearful and yet made it all the way up and all the way across the challenges. After telling him how proud I am of him for pushing himself he broke down in tears because I think he knew that he had accomplished something and it felt great. We have had several incidents with him in particular getting loud and angry at staff and other campers but recently he seems to have found the strength to check himself on it when he knows it’s ramping up. Prayers that he will continue to grow and develop a habit of controlling himself in the early stages of anger.
We also had a great time yesterday riding horseback on the trail and doing some horsemanship activities with the mini horses. SD chose Timmy the mini donkey and they tore up the course running over obstacles, stepping in hula hoops and jumping over the vault-pole together as a team. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a bigger smile on a kid’s face. We still have to work on him opening up a little bit but he has shared some of his goals that he would like to accomplish before and when he goes home which for him is a huge step I believe. KV also won a race with his mini horse and could not have been happier. He is one of the more reserved kids and we need prayers that in the next few days he will open up to us and really dig deep about what he needs to work on at home and at school. He has admitted that he has a hard time with other students, not listening to teachers and getting upset so I believe that is a step in the right direction. He’s a great kid with an awesome smile and my hope is that he will continue to push himself like he has. He, along with IG and SD did a great job as our anchor system for supporting and lowering the other guys as they jumped off the leap of faith platform. The leap of faith is the biggest part of the ropes course as you get hooked up to a rope and jump out as far as possible. This takes a lot of faith in the team and unless there was that trust none of our boys would have jumped. A few of them could not commit which is fine because they pushed themselves just getting up there, and the ones who did jump I believe learned to put more trust in the group and I know that has brought us closer as a team.
NV also did a great job and pushing himself to get up the pole to the ropes course. It seemed at first he was not going to complete go in a crossed the obstacles but in the end found the strength to not only accomplish his goal but to also jump off the leap of faith platform into the strength of his team. He has also begun to not only hold others accountable but to separate himself when problems arise or there are discussions or activities that are inappropriate. I see the potential for a great leadership and him and hope that we can help him continue to develop that now and after camp.
LG pushed himself way beyond what he did last year on the ropes course. He not only got all the way up there but made his way all the way around and through every single aspect of the ropes course challenge and proceeded to make the leap of faith to trust his group. This was a big moment for him to grow not only in trust but also to push himself and to take time to figure out what needs to be done in order to complete each element of the course rather than just trying to rush through. This is something I hope that he can pick up on and we can help him develop. We will be working with him in learning to control his words and his actions by slowing down, thinking things through and looking ahead towards what the desired outcome is. I know he has it in him and I believe that this year will be his year to make some real leaps and bounce.