Everyone at one point or another has an experience where you are not comfortable, the surroundings are unfamiliar, the people surrounding you are not the friends and family you are usually with and you are left wondering… now what? For many children, teens and families, that is exactly the feelings when they go to a camp for the first time… I am here and now what? Almost always you can look back at those experiences and recount numerous lessons learned.
Camp is guaranteed to provide experiences where everyday life lessons will be reflected on for a lifetime. Many lessons are experienced and ingrained in the minds of the camper while at camp but often times, years later, the ideas, experiences and memories provide valuable lessons for living a completed life. Particularly in a faith focused camp, the lasting spiritual and emotional impact can be a real defining moment in the life of a young person.
If you are considering sending your child to camp or as a family you are considering a family camp experience, here are a few lessons you can’t put a price tag on:
- Faith-Defining Moments – Camps who share God’s Word publicly and provide opportunities for small group and individual study will teach the camper the importance of daily quiet-time with God and corporate worship with intentional focus on eternal impact.
- Fun – Too often than not, life can be taken too seriously. Camp is fun and reminds the camper daily that life can be fun when done in a God honoring way! Good fun and laughter will do anyone good!
- Mentorship – Every person is a composite of the people who have influenced them. Camp is a great place for positive and encouraging influence in a spiritual manner and environment.
- Trust – In a world eroded of trust, camp experiences such as on a ropes course, team challenge and many other opportunities will produce trust in one another and in friendships and leadership.
- Leadership – Learning to lead a group in cabin activities, outdoor activities and many other types of activities, campers learn the responsibility of leading others and self.
- Courage – Camp will always stretch you. The first night away from family or trying something new, the camper will learn to be courageous to try new things.
- Friendships – Surrounded by cabin mates and staff, the camper will learn to build new friendships in a safe environment focused on faith.
- Relaxation – In a culture where business is considered success, camp teaches the importance of getting away for a time of relaxation and quietness.
- Self-awareness – The experience of camp can be stretching and rewarding and often times, the camper will be made aware of strengths and weaknesses and how God has built them. What is great about camp is that the staff and program is designed to help them work through all of this and equip them for the future!
- Acceptance – Everyone wants to be accepted and loved. Camp focused on faith will exhibit the love of God and campers will learn the power of God’s love in their life and how they can love others.
- Teamwork – Group activities, sport events and cabin events supply plenty of opportunities to work as a team and understand there is no “I” in team.
Camp provides the camper with opportunities that often are only found and experienced in a camp atmosphere. Climbing a climbing tower, boating for the first time, spending quality time with another person for the purpose of mentoring, exploring in the great outdoors, spending time in God’s Word and many more experiences will all teach lessons far greater than meets the eye. These experiences will provide lessons the camper will reflect on for decades to come. Camp is an incubator for growth, spiritual maturity, self-development and commitment. Camp provides an incredible environment and intentional spiritual focus in a short period of time for a life-long, life-changing experience that no one should ever miss out on.
What lessons have you taken with you in life from camp?