Sunday, June 04, 2006

rest easy

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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.


Anonymous said...

I think Sarah will help you, at least some days, if the camp is back in our home area. She can leave Joe with one or the other sets of grandparents during the day at least, since both sets would be nearby. I'd call her and ask her if you need more help. (Plus, she might be good for your sanity.)

Joses said...
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Joses said...

Carrie, When did Jesus get burnt out?

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