Camp for a Week, Friends for Life!

Can Churches Benefit from Summer Camp Magic?

For those that have attended a camp at Slumber Falls or seen camps in action, realize that the creativity, planning, and implementation of activities to help shape an intentional Christian community takes time and forethought.  One of the staff training modules includes transforming groups of campers, counselors, and staff from a group into a community with shared values and deep concern for…

Friendships: How much time does it take?

In Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of the Dalai Lama, Dalai Lama XIV reflected on an observation from a parrot and the Master of Robes.  “One of the parrots was very friendly with…Master of the Robes. He used to feed it nuts. As it nibbled from his fingers, he used to stroke its head, at which the bird appeared to enter a…

Our Taby is Growing!

For many new parents with young children, developmental milestones are one of the measuring tools our culture utilizes to see how young people are growing and maturing.  While the validity of this approach can be argued from a theological point of view in how we are made in God’s image, I have spent a lot of time thinking about development for our…

Christmas Reflections

Decorating for Advent and Christmas took on a new meaning for me this year.  This past year we adopted a baby and he has just turned one.  This is his first Christmas with us, and I want it to be a special time in his life as well as a period of growth as a person. Conversations that once did not apply to…

Blessing of Presence

During one of our college ministry worship services, one of the college leaders led the group in a communion service.  Evidently, she had just finished a study on Thich Nhat Hahn, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk.  She asked me if it was acceptable to use some of his writings and teachings while reflecting on the communion table.  After we chatted a bit, I…

Ripples

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” Mother Teresa, an Albanian-Indian nun, who founded the Missionaries of Charity in 1950 with 13 members to over 4,000 sisters, an associated brotherhood of 300 members, and over a million co-workers operating 610 missions in over 100 countries at the time of her…

Divine Play

As I sort through thousands of pictures of campers taken over the course of the summer, I see more than smiles, laughter, and the bonds of true friendship.  I see the presence of an active and dynamic God working in shaping the lives of campers, counselors, and staff members.  These pictures lift up the power of the church’s outdoor ministry and speak…

What are You Worth?

I came across this video of the story of a young boy asking his father how much he was worth one evening while trying to catch up with some potential counselors on Facebook.  If you have not watched this 3-minute video, I would encourage you to do so now. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPq2OW-j1uI As I finished watching the video, a flood of memories of people…

Memories and the Foundation of Culture

Memories shape who we are, inform our decisions, and provide a foundation for how we engage the world.  The input that we consume, the relationships that we pursue, and the habits that we acquire shape our character according to Michael Hyatt.  In a culture that is flooded with mass marketing, electronic entertainment and social networking, along with a myriad of options designed…