My favorite memories of camp this summer at HTH revolve around warm summer evenings, sitting around a campfire surrounded by young faces. Music and singing fills the air. As the flames rise high, all join in joyful, boisterous songs that bring us closer together: “I Just Want To Be A Sheep”; “The Fruit Of the Spirit’s Not a Watermelon.” Then “Shake A Friends Hand” brings everyone to their feet as we exchange handshakes, back-pats and cheek tweaks along with shrieks and laughter.
As the blaze dies down, replaced by glowing coals and flickering flames, the songs become more serious, with deeper meaning, focusing the young minds gathered around the circle: “One Thing Remains”; “He Knows My Name”; “One Way, Jesus.” A leader, possibly a teen leader, talks about a key scripture, their life experiences and about the difference Jesus has made in their life. At this point, all are aware of the lighted cross on the far side of the pond and spend time in careful reflection.
At the end, the campfire closes with a few more serious songs: “Let Your Light Shine”. “I Have Decided To Follow Jesus.” An invitation is given for any who wants prayer or further discussion to stay behind to talk to a counselor. The rest are dismissed to go back to their cabins while singing “This Joy That I Have, The World Didn’t Give It To Me”.
It's sweet times like this - that I have witnessed countless times over the years - that most affect the young people we serve at His Thousand Hills.
(Eric and His wife Judy serve on the Board at His Thousand Hills)