This week I spoke at a Family Camp in Iowa. It was a camp that I grew up attending. I made several significant decisions at that camp. In the full story of my life – the camp plays a crucial early role.
The name is kind of strange (Iowa Regular Baptist Camp) – unless you know what a Regular Baptist is – which is an interesting discussion in itself (because I'm not sure all Regular Baptists agree with who they are)… I'm not making fun, really… I just think titles mean VERY different things to "insiders" than "outsiders." And the reality is – with Regular Baptists – they don't even agree with what "Regular" means in their title (really!!). But anyway…
The "chapel" wasn't nearly this nice when I was growing up. It was in the basement of the dining hall. This is REALLY nice! Over 300 people were attending Family Camp 2 (it is the second of five Family Camps).
Our two oldest children were on a mission trip this week in Puerto Rico – so Sue, Emily, Gaby (Emma's friend) and I drove 1000 miles to Iowa for me to speak at Family Camp. We spent a lot of time with a couple who are old friends of mine (Tim & Devona). What a blessing to hang out with them again. I graduated with Devona. Her husband, Tim, and his brother, Clay, are two of my early childhood friends. Our families hung out a lot together. Even though I don't see them often – it is easy to spend time with them again…
I also made two new, important friendships. They kept us in a pretty nice place (compared to normal "camping" conditions). It was where our family stayed, the worship leader's family, and the "director" of the week and his family. We hung out every night and talked a lot about life and ministry.
It is amazing how quickly hearts can be bound together when you meet like-minded, passionate guys who have walked many of the same ministry "roads" at different ages and in different contexts. I left camp Friday morning with two new friends. I hope our paths cross many more times in the coming years!
We enjoyed our experience at camp very much, but look forward to being back at Northridge tomorrow!