Campers’ faith is growing at LMC This is a story about nine guys, a camp counselor and an unforgettable week at Lutheran Memorial Camp (LMC). Bryan has been a counselor for the past 2 summers and has encountered all different ages of campers and has experienced a lot of highs and lows. During a week at LMC Bryan experienced how God can work through camp.
“Are we doing Bible study again...this stinks,” a camper whines as the rest of the group agrees with the complaint. I have led a lot of Bible studies in the past and this has happened before. Sometimes the kids get over it and other times they drag their feet. Instead of giving up, I encouraged them. “Why don’t we read something different,” I said and turned to the book of Job. For the next two hours we read through the book of Job. One of the kids asked me “why is this happening to Job,” and I paused. This is one of those questions that is very difficult to answer. Why do bad things happen to good people? I struggled to at first, but finally answered “God shows us through suffering and pain that God’s presence is still there and that God loves us and will give us what we need at the end. God is powerful and is in our lives always.” This was a turning point and instead of choosing an activity the next day, they chose to continue a Bible study.
Later in the week something incredible happened. As one of Bryan’s Bible study activities, campers pick a stone from the ground and hold onto it all day. They can’t put it into their pocket and they can’t set it down. At the end of the day campers bring the rocks to the treeline. Bryan asked the group to think about a burden in their lives or a person they cannot forgive. Then he explains that this burden or grudge is holding them all back, just like this stone they have held all day. It got in our way and we couldn’t stop thinking about it, because it was always there. Finally, Bryan instructed them to throw the stone into the woods and explained how God takes the burden from our shoulders. After the activity, one of the campers shared with Bryan how his stone represented the people who bullied him and now he could forgive them.