The day we got to the camp, the Hope Youth Corps leader told us that we had 5 days until we had to actually run a church camp. There were 30 kids from 2nd to 10th grade coming to stay with us for 3 days, and we were totally in charge. (Obviously, there was adult supervision, don’t worry, but we called the shots.) 22 teenagers were supposed to be the counselors, lead lessons and activities, feed the kids, and we had to plan all of this on our own while doing the 8-hour-a-day blue-collar labor. This was our big second task. Kids.
We thought it was impossible. At least, I did. I was shocked that they were giving all these responsibilities to us. We had just gotten to know each other, now we were expected to run a camp? We were just teenagers!
But we had no choice. We had to pull off this camp for the kids. We each thought of our experiences with church camp and wanted to give someone else that great experience. I was so surprised at what we were capable of. I think the world has such low expectations of teenagers sometimes, and things like this reminded me of how much of an impact we can make with God and each other.
We had a blast those three days. It was great. It felt like one big play date. We got to know each kid and spend time with them, play with them, teach them, talk to them. It felt like a big family at the end of it.
Yes, there were smores. What else would we do in the woods in Alaska?
On one of the weekends when we drove down to Anchorage, we got to climb Flat Top. Being from mountain-less Texas, I had never climbed a mountain before. (The picture above was taken probably when we were a third of the way up. ) I’m not going to lie, it was super hard. But I’m glad I did it. I’ll spare you a cheesy mountain analogy.
What’s a mountain adventure without a motivational speech? This is my friend, Nathan, giving the best mountain speech I’ve ever heard. Yes, he was very intense.
Here’s my friend Lizzy doing one of the scariest things I’ve ever done.
Here’s a few of my favorite random pictures from my amazing trip. (Click to view full image)
Thanks for being great, Alaska. ‘Till next time.