We returned from Wyld Life Camp Tuesday morning, all 103 of us, simultaneously exhilarated and exhausted. We had so much going on inside of our hearts, and yet doing an overnight bus ride never allows for much sleep. It would be safe to say that 99% of our campers went home and crashed for a few hours before actually doing anything else.
For the next five mornings after camp, I invite anyone who would like to join us for morning devotionals. It’s a great way to model a friendship with Christ and give our friends a jump-start into starting their own quiet times. Connor, Jack, and I were catching up on the patio of Mama Bear’s, waiting for our junior high friends to arrive Wednesday morning when two gentlemen walked over. They began to thank us for sharing Jesus with kids; they must have seen our Bibles. We shared that we just came back from Castaway in Minnesota and were doing morning devotionals with kids who wanted to learn how to do quiet times to continue to grow in their relationship with Jesus. They thought that was awesome, and one of the gentleman shared that he went Castaway when he was 15 years old. We were laughing at our Young Life connection, and then he shared 2 Corinthians 5:17 with us:
17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
We said our goodbyes and gathered our junior high friends together and began to dive into our devotional. Before I knew it, one of the gentlemen appeared and handed me a card. I said thank you, thinking it was a business card, and that I would reach out to him and say thanks for the encouragement. He was gone before I knew it; I looked down at the card and saw that it was a gift card to the coffee shop for a generous amount. All it said on the card was, “From Doug.” I was floored.
The most common doubt I hear my junior high and high school friends say is that it’s so hard to believe in God because you can’t physically see him. For me, I see God all the time; this encounter was a perfect example. I see God working through people all the time, and it makes Him as real to me as the chair I’m sitting on.
I see God when:
- my son sings “Jesus Loves Me”
- someone is crying and their friends wrap their arms around them
- I’m exhausted after a long day, and I come home to the house all picked up
- my daughter asks me questions about what Jesus has to say about life
- a community comes together in the midst of tragedy or to build something beautiful together
- a stranger gives me a gift card to our favorite coffee shop to share with my Wyld Life friends for devotions.
- And the list goes on…
Thank you, Lord, for making yourself known to me and others. Thank you for your son, Jesus, who paid it all so we can walk with you. Thank you for the Holy Spirit living inside of us as a guide. May we see you more, hear you more, and feel you more in our every day life and walk in the encouragement that you are always there loving us. Thank you for my friend, Doug. Please bless him and keep him.
In Jesus’ name I pray,