Summer youth and family camps have been a part of my life since I was a baby. Some people tell me I attended my first camp with my family when I was only 6 months old. I think I've missed 2 years of summer camp in my whole life.
Now, I direct a summer camp for Sr. High youth. This is my fourth year directing, and up until about a week ago, it was proving to be my most stressful. It's been hard to admit, but I'm approaching burn out. I've felt attacked on nearly all sides - my counseling staff is not as plentiful as I would like, I feel like we're repeating the same activities (maybe I am, since I've been at this so long.) I feel like I'm fresh out of ideas, and energy. And then, at a moment when several counselors backed out, I went outside and said a short prayer. I turned "My" camp over to God. Occasionally, the worry tries to creep in, but I'm refusing it. God will provide, if I just leave the burden with Him. I haven't given up searching for the staff we need, or working on ideas, but a weight has been lifted. When I think back on the other camps I have directed, staffed, or been a camper at, I see that God has provided in those situations. Why would he stop now?
I find it ironic that as a director of a Christian camp, I steadfastly refused to let God work in me and with me. I forgot to consult the One who this camp is about. It's so easy to get caught up in the "doing" of something - the position, the authority, the recognition, the living martyrdom of camp directing. (Woe is me! I have no staff! I do ALLLLL the work! And you know why? Because *I* love God, and *someone* has to do this!)
Perhaps I feel ready to get out of directing. Maybe not. I do know, however, that quitting directing won't solve the problem that causes the stress of directing. If I keep trying to put on a good show for the kids, that's all it will be - they'll know it, I'll know it, and most importantly, God will know it. If I feel uninspired, it's because I refuse my source of inspiration. If I am tired, it's because I refuse to accept the rest and refuge found in Jesus Christ.
I can tell that this is a hard road to travel. I've spent so many years trying to be as self sufficient as possible that I give lip service to relying on God without having truly lived it in a consistent manner. It may take me years to learn to always seek God when I claim to be doing something for His glory. But I have hope, because of who Christ is.
"Rest easy, Have no fear
I love you perfectly, love drives out fear.
I'll take your burdens, you'll take My grace
Rest Easy, in My embrace."
Thanks, Audio A., for reminding me.