3.2.1.Impact - 2018 City Camp

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School is out!  Memorial Day is our unofficial start to summer and that means our summer interns have arrived here at City Union Mission. It also means we are gearing up for another exciting summer of City Camp in the Vanderberg Youth Center.

For the next 9 weeks our halls will be filled with students engaging in recreation, life skills, education and devotions. This week though, is all about our interns. We have four incredible college students with us this summer to minister to our students, build relationships, and continue to hone their leadership skills. This past week they, along with eight other interns serving at the Mission joined our staff and took part in a training week to help prepare them for this summer's ministry. Part of that training includes a retreat to Camp CUMCITO in Warsaw, Missouri where we better equip them by doing some team building and discussing different aspects of ministry and serving others. It also includes a lot of fellowship, and definitely prayer. It was during prayer one morning, one of our interns mentioned the word "impact" that got my head and heart racing. We all have an impact. Whether we realize it or not, whether its our intention or not -- we all, in our words and actions have impact. It affects us, those closest to us, those we contact on a day to day basis. Like a pebble tossed into a pond, there is a ripple effect that is made when the pebble hits the water. Many of us desire to have impact in positive ways to leave a mark on this world and others. Simply put, we want to make what we do, count. As a Christ follower, I can think of no greater way to have impact than to live and love in a way that reflects Jesus. It's not about us, its about Him!

When I think about City Camp this summer, I can't help but conclude this is the heart attitude of our team. From way back in September when we started planning for this summer, through the hours of planning activities, writing curriculum, and pouring over what we make up our daily devotions this summer we wanted it to make an impact. That said, while we undoubtedly spend the summer having lots of fun with our students swimming, playing, hanging out, and enjoying the days, what excites us most is the opportunity to give words that make an impact that is transformational. We will be studying through the Life of Christ this summer with our students. From His birth, through the impact of His earthly ministry, and to His death, burial, and resurrection we want to examine the life of Jesus. We want our students to get a full picture of the Savior, and to be impacted by what He has said and done. As we have been impacted, as we have experienced transforming life change, our great hope is that our students will hear and respond to the message of Jesus.

As we prayed that morning, a passage came to mind. In John 6, Jesus had been sharing with the crowds, some of whom had left Him after hearing His message. He turned to His disciples, and asked if they too, would be leaving? Simon Peter responded in verse 68, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know you are the Holy One of God". What a statement of impact that Jesus life and words had on the life of Peter! 

Pray for our interns and staff this summer that we would maintain our focus, and that our desire to impact would be Christ centered. Pray that we can build and build upon meaningful relationships with our students. Pray for our students that they would come in contact with the Jesus of the Bible and they too would be impacted and transformed by Him.