This past week our church was fortunate to be able to send seven high school girls to Quest camp in Green Lake, WI. Quest is a one week American Baptist camp experience offered to high school students. We sent more campers this year than last year thanks to some great fundraising events and hard work by our teens. My wife Michelle drove the girls up and stayed with them as their counselor for the week. Activities were scheduled from 7:30am to 11:00pm with few breaks. Every one of the girls talked about how deeply spiritual the week was for them. The theme was “Wreck This Life”; it focused on breaking down barriers, doing away with empty rituals and rebuilding a foundation of faith. After arriving home one of the campers said, “I miss Quest!!! The theme really fit our lives… Literally!!!” Another camper reported, “I’m happy I’m home but also sad because I have to wait another year to go back.”
The Bible studies, activities and fellowship they experienced there reminded the girls of the centrality of their spiritual lives. How meaningful was the Quest experience? One camper said, “Be on your guard. Stand firm in faith. Be courageous. Be strong. Do everything in love.” Here’s a portion of the report Michelle gave to the congregation:
“So what does a Quest theme of “Wreck this Life” mean? It means when our own lives are wrecked in some way, recognize the presence of God with you. And that whatever the recovery from the wreckage looks like, it can be greater than the sum of your life before being wrecked…
We are changed by our experience at camp. We see living human characters of the Bible, that before were just stories. A living human Jesus who broke the rules and expectations, who loves us still today, who said we are more important than traditions, we are more important than rituals, that love is best practiced with our hearts like children who see no color, no gender, no hatred until taught to do so, we matter because Christ says we do, no matter how small, how broken, how rich, how poor. We are all welcomed into the love of Christ.
Seven girls, lives changed Seven girls on fire to read their Bibles more Seven girls seeing a living, real God in their lives Seven girls with their expectations and understanding of God and themselves wrecked. One leader in the same place.”
Thanks to everyone who supported our efforts to send these young people to camp. The lessons they learned will impact them for Christ in the years to come.