It's been a busy couple of weeks. We have just returned home from a wonderful vacation at the lake visiting family. There was lots of unpacking and laundry to do when we got home! Now all that freshly washed clothing is getting packed up again as we head off to Camp Good News. If you are not familiar with CGN please click the link below:
Camp Good News/CEF of Maine
Ben grew up going to Camp Good News every summer. He even went through the CYIA (Christian Youth in Action) program. He loved camp and it was always something he wanted to share with his kids some day. The first time I ever went to camp was as an adult and I was there for a cousins wedding. It was only a few years ago that I got to attend camp and see it in action. It really is a great place for kids and the staff there truly love God and want the kids to know God. The first thing you are told when you arrive is, "camp is about the camper", and it really is!
Some of the things I love about camp...
One, it's affordable! I realize $175 is still a lot of money for many families, especially if you are sending multiple kids but compared to other camps out there and what they offer, CGN is a bargain. Not only do the kids get fed well, they also get to choose a skill to learn while they are there. In the past our kids have done archery & riflery as well as swim lessons. This is what my kids talk about all year long...what skill they will choose! The day is jam packed with fun, Bible teaching, swimming, making new friends, eating, singing & playing games! They sleep well at night, lets just put it that way.
CGN also offers scholarships to children who want to attend but whose parents cannot afford to send them. People donate money throughout the year to sponsor a camper...I LOVE THIS! Kids who would otherwise not have an opportunity to go to camp are given the chance.
The other thing I love about camp is that you can volunteer to be staff. Because Ben and I are volunteering, we get to send one child each to camp for free. Of course there is a process to being a volunteer...background checks, references, etc. They carefully screen the volunteers so you can be assured your children are in safe hands. Of course they have regular staff too, but the volunteers help to fill in the holes and that allows CGN to keep their costs down so that they can offer a week at camp for an affordable price.
I'm putting this plug in because our hearts are with CEF (Child Evangelism Fellowship). CEF is a ministry Ben grew up with and over the years we have both come to love it. We have such a burden to see children know God and we are thankful for ministries like CEF. We share their vision and want you to experience it for yourself! If you've considered sending your kids to camp but haven't been sure which one, I would recommend you look into Camp Good News. If you currently do send your kids to Camp Good News but have never volunteered for the week then I would encourage you to pray about doing so. Yes, it's an exhausting week. Yes, you have to give up vacation time to do it. I promise you though, you will be blessed and you will not be sorry you did it! I realize that I should have done this at the beginning of camp season. We are now at the last week of camp for the summer but that doesn't mean you can't consider camp. There's always next year. You have lots of time to pray and see how you can help this ministry. If you want to send your child, you have a year to save. You have a year to pray and see if God is calling you to volunteer for a week and save up some of that vacation time! Maybe he will ask you to send money to support a camper or just send money to the camp for any repairs or updates they need to make. There are so many ways you can be involved with camp! See for yourself by clicking this link: Opportunities.
One thing everyone reading this blog post can do is PRAY! It's free and it's so powerful. Pray for the staff at Camp that God would strengthen them and continue to use them to reach children for Christ. Pray that God would continue to provide for the needs of the staff and the camp itself. Pray for us this coming week as we go and volunteer. We need prayers for strength and wisdom as we interact with the campers. We will need clarity of mind and the ability to leave our own struggles and stresses behind so that we can focus on the campers and focus on how God wants to use us that week. Pray for our 3 oldest children who will be campers that they would have a great week and that God would speak to their hearts. Pray that they would make new friends and stay safe. Pray for 3 of my younger ones who will be staying with my in-laws for the week...my MIL will need your prayers! And lastly pray for Emma. She will be coming to camp and staying with me and is going through a phase where she is very attached to mom and will not go to new people. This could make it stressful for me to do the job I've been assigned so pray she would warm up quickly to the babysitting staff! Pray she would sleep well too...if baby doesn't sleep, mommy doesn't sleep.
I'm always so thankful to anyone who reads any blog post I write but I'm especially thankful to you for taking the time to read this one! Please share and get the word out about Camp Good News!