Friday, August 1, 2014

The best week of my life. Literally.

As I mentioned in my last post, I spent the last week near Jasper, Georgia at Sharptop Cove, a YoungLife camp. I went with my school's YoungLife group as a camper for the first time in my life. Since I just graduated, this summer was my last opportunity to attend camp and let me just say, it was amazing. Going into camp, I had heard so much about camp and how it really changes your life. I had several friends who were in YoungLife and who had attended camp, everyone saying "It's the best week of your life." All I can say, is that I had very high expectations for the week and my experiences far exceeded my expectations. To start the week off, we had an eighteen hour bus ride to get to camp. Kansas to Georgia is a long stretch, and by bus it was less than enjoyable. We stopped in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and I completely fell in love with the city. We walked around a park for two hours because we were ahead of schedule and the views were just magnificent. I've always had a love for the south and from what I saw of this town, I could easily see myself living there.
[the beautiful view from the park where we spent part of the afternoon.] However, we quickly ran into a few issues when the air conditioning on our bus went out. We had an hour and a half to two hours left of our trip and it was sweltering. The bathroom began to smell awful as well. Luckily, we arrived at camp and were the first group of campers to arrive so we were able to explore the camp and have it mostly to ourselves for awhile. The week was filled with awesome memories and fun activities. From a rope swing into the lake, a giant "blob" that launched you high in the air and then in the lake, a zip line into the lake, a pool, rock climbing, mountain biking, volleyball tournements, cabin competitions, a hike up a mountain, amazing food, as well as life changing speakers, singers, and cabin time, I can't even explain just how amazing my time at Young Life camp was.
[me and two of my friends, Caitlin and Rachel, dressed for our cabin's volleyball tournament. we didn't do very well, but it was still fun to dress up and share laughs.]
[the view from the top of Sharptop Mountain. The hike was incredibly steep and uphill but the view totally made up for it!] Probably my favorite night of the whole week was the "western" themed night. Everyone dressed up and there was a skit show and then a square dance afterwards. We were paired up with boys we didn't know which was a fun way to meet people and share lots of laughs because who honestly is a pro at square dancing?
[here I am with Caitlin again before the western night. Boys in flannels and cowboy boots are probably my favorite so all in all it was a pretty good night.] On the second to last night, we had a "dress-up" night where everyone wore nicer clothes and we ate a fancy dinner. It was really fun to see everyone not in t-shirts and shorts and of course the food was great.
[here I am with one of my best friends, Keehn, on the fancy night. Besides flannels and cowboy boots, I love guys in bow ties. Just saying. Keehn went to a different school than me but it was fun to meet up at camp!]

To sum things up, my life has been changed by the week I spent at Young Life camp. I had to be brave and do things that were scary, like jumping off a telephone pole 50 feet in the air with only a harness and the trust that the guide had me down below. It was moments like these that really showed me how I had to fully put my faith and trust in Jesus Christ and just take a leap. God will always have us, just like I was safe in the harness I was wearing. He will never let us fall so far or hit the ground so hard that we can't get up again. And I think that's so important to remember. I also realized that I need to count on God every second of every day because I don't just need Him in moments of weakness or fear. Another thing that really hit home to me was said by the speaker at Club time. All week he talked about how he would fill up a tub of fresh, clean, cold water for his dog to drink from, and yet he would find that his dog would go across the street to where houses were being built and drink from muddy puddles of water. He told us that we are like this with our relationship with God. We allow mud puddles, which are anything that draw us away from God and keep us from trusting in Him fully, to distract us. He encouraged us to stop drinking from mud puddles, even though it may be scary or difficult, and drink from the crystal clear water that is offered to us from God. I'm running on my "camp high" still, but I just feel so amazing and thankful to have had this opportunity. Now, I have just a few hours (literally about eight) before I board a train with my siblings and cousins to go visit our other cousins in New Mexico. I'm sure I will have many adventures to blog about from this coming week as well. xoxo, Kenzie

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