Storms, no power, intense heat...some of the challenges of this summer.
Laughter, beautiful singing, Olympics, green grass (even in August!), great canoe and hiking trips, trail lunches, Cindy's rolls, talented and caring staff, new friends, a deeper relationship with Jesus, trumpet playing in the morning, goats and sheep and chickens, watermelons from the garden, cool craft projects...these were a few of the highlights of Camp Hanover's 56th summer.
Our staff closed out their summer of service with a delicious buffet brunch prepared by the leadership staff (Marly, Matt, Will, Incy, Morgan). After worship they began to scatter to homes, schools, jobs. Part of that worship time was spent Looking Back, then Looking forward, then Living Each Moment as songs of praise were sung, prayers of thanks were voiced, and words from the heart were shared. Whether you are a former camper or staff member or a current one, the poem printed below (written by Chris Brannan, a staff member on and off over the past 5-6 summer) seems to sum up the joy and challenge of living in Christian community where each person is valued as a unique child of God. As you read the poem, please reflect on your camp experience and commit now to taking those things that you learned at camp and sharing them with a world that needs to know how to work together, to listen to each other, to find and affirm the Christ in each person, and to learn to live in harmony with God's creation.
Thanks to each of you for your part in making this summer one to celebrate. Thanks to Chris for putting many of our thoughts into words. Enjoy. And start now to make plans to attend Winter Camp (Dec. 28-30) and summer camp 2013. Live Each Moment for Christ.
Jink and Diddle by Christopher Brannan
The butterflies start when state maintenance ends,
And the buzz of the summer is soon to begin.
May sure seems like a lifetime ago,
Good grief where did all that time go?
From the Focus Fox to the Question Box,
We made lifetime friends and played rocks in a box.
Box was just used twice, but give me a break,
I’m at camp and it’s August and I need to hydrate.
When I look back on this summer and all that it’s been,
I’ll be frank, I’m in awe, and my head starts to spin.
From hazel eyes to golden skies, I’ve seen and done a lot,
There’ve been highs and lows, good days and bad, but not just all for naught.
Here at camp, in this place apart,
God’s in control, He consumes your heart.
We’re the hands and the feet, I tell you the truth,
We’re a stop in kids’ lives, just like a tollbooth.
They’re here in an instant and gone in a flash,
But the memories, experiences, and love – they will last.
We’ve all made a difference, if only to one,
Been used, stretched, exhausted by Jesus the Son.
But keep your chin up and know you’ve done good,
It’ll start to sink in when you’re back in your hood.
For the real world is calling and beckoning us back,
To papers, computers, and all of that jack.
When you’re back to the grind and all of your chores,
You’ll long for the days of the old sign-up board.
Cookouts, overnights, and mosquito bites,
Even homesick campers will seem alright.
For when you look back and reflect on this summer,
You should smile, say a prayer, maybe feel like a mother.
For you’ve nurtured and cared for the most precious ones,
Guided, directed, provided some fun.
So as we wrap up this sweet summertime,
I hope you think back and remember this rhyme.
Or at least hold tight to this one little bit,
You’ve served your Lord well, and that is legit.
As we leave this place today, don’t stand by and cry,
Though it may take a lot, a heave and a sigh.
Think of this time as an extended hour break,
Enjoy it my friend, you’ve had a lot on your plate.
Don’t you get sad at the end of this summer,
Don’t be discouraged or say it’s a bummer.
For trust in the Lord, it’s written in pen,
He’ll bless and return us, to this fellowship again.