Each week of summer camp, we are offering a chance for one of our Summer Staffers to write a post about their experiences. This week’s guest blogger is Sumner Gilliam, a first year staffer who is working as a Resident Counselor.
My name is Sumner Cultra Gilliam and I am from Martin, TN! A little about myself, I love to play soccer, I play trombone and will march for the Pride of the Southland Marching Band at the University of Tennessee. I love long walks on the beach and horseback riding in the mountains…..enough with this eHarmony stuff!
This has been a really amazing first year on staff and last week was a grand slam! When I first got my cabin list I wasn’t too thrilled about it but I was still excited. It seemed like it was going to be a ordinary week. When all my campers arrived we seemed to be bonding really well for our first few hours as a cabin. That next morning we went to low ropes extravaganza to bond even more. It all started when our facilitator, John Raper, had to go drive boats because the original boatdrivers overslept. So I was in charge of leading low ropes. We started off with a game called Bridge when they were on their way to Narnia when that came across this big abyss of neverendingness. Aslan shows up and gives them a magic water bottle that will let the person holding the bottle go across the abyss. The catch is you can’t throw the bottle back across and once someone goes across either back or forward they can’t hold it again.The boys almost fell here and there, but they all accomplished their goals.
Then we headed to the Beam. The group must get every one up and over this telephone pole attached between two trees. This activity is very hard for even big strong men like me….you can laugh now. One by one they all made it and used very good and impressive teamwork to conquer the Beam! It was awesome debriefing them and seeing what they saw and how they complimented each other in God’s love.
Throughout the week we bonded even better, I truly saw God’s work at hand in just one week. Wednesday and Thursday night for devotions involved talking about the struggles in our lives and supporting one another in what was truly a brotherhood moment. Well, Saturday morning started off with a final goodbye but a welcoming hello to our new brothers. My cabin woke up at 5:45 in the morning to go hike the Lowe trail! It was crazy how they all wanted to do this knowing boys like us all want to sleep in to the p.m. side of 5:45….hey that rhymed! We had a great hike up there and had a good 20 minute devotion about spreading our faith. I read Romans 1: 8-17 and I kinda mixed it up like the crazy self I am.
“8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of Cabin 12, because Cabin 12’s faith is being reported all over the world. 9 God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember Cabin 12 10 in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to Lakeshore.
11 I long to see Cabin 12 so that I may impart to Cabin 12 some spiritual gift to make you strong— 12 that is, that Cabin 12 and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.
13 I do not want Cabin 12 to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that I planned many times to come to Cabin 12 in order that I might have a harvest among Cabin 12, just as I have had among the other Cabins.
14 I am obligated both to Cabin 12 and non-Cabin 12, both to the wise and the foolish. 15 That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are at Lakeshore.
They seemed all touched by it and I hope and pray they all take God to heart and run with it. God is doing so many wonders here and I could not be more proud of this staff and all it’s campers. It’s time we all start to spread the good news that Lakeshore has to off and I hope and pray all young ones striving to find their relationship with God and to strengthen it so they can grow up to be the man or woman God seeks them to be. May it be his will and not ours and may his kingdom be what wakes us up and lays us down.