This summer will be my third Summer Bible Camp at Light of the Village. I have had the honor and the privilege of being on staff for over a year now and a volunteer for over three years. They have definitely been some of the wildest years but also the best years of my life thus far. This summer, I am working with the 8-10 year old girls. Half of my group I’ve had the privilege of spending many days with throughout the school year and the other half are fresh, beautiful faces.
Janie: Finding the One in the Midst of Chaos
A little over a month before summer camp started was one of the most eye opening and heartbreaking times in my life. In early May we lost a young boy named Romey. He was hit by a car while crossing the street on his bike. He was just a kid with a lot of life left to live. Although his death was heartbreaking for all of us at Light of the Village, it was his life that speaks to me the most.
Romey was a regular at our Summer Bible Camp for six years. He could light up an entire room with just one smile. But behind that smile was a boy with a lot of pain and sorrow. Last summer he was in our 11-14 year old boys group, and during the summer one of the interns and Mr. John had the opportunity to ask Romey who Jesus really was to him. His response was, “He’s my daddy, and He’s my savior.” What a statement! The beauty behind this story and the reason I share it is simply this: God has created a lighthouse in one of the darkest places. In a neighborhood full of drugs, violence, and tragedy, God’s light is shining through the darkness. Romey’s life has taught me so much in my own walk with the Lord and how I view my time with my group of girls. His life has taught me the importance of not just taking the time but finding the time in our busy schedule to truly share God’s love and His word with the kids. Sometimes finding that moment or that opportunity with a kid can be challenging but it is the most important thing that we will do this summer. It’s easy to get lost in the big picture and miss the little treasures that are in front of us. Each life is so precious in God’s eyes and so is every minute that we have with the kids. Just one moment can change a kids life forever. Just like Romey, we never know what day will be our last. Before the summer started, as I spent time in prayer and devotion about summer camp, I made it a challenge in my own walk of faith with the Lord to look for those opportunities to truly share Christ’s love and salvation with the kids. Because in the end it’s never about the numbers, but it’s always about the individual and finding that one kid in the midst of the chaos that needs to hear and to know how much Jesus loves him and how He died on the cross with him in mind.
I am so excited and expectant to see what God does in the remaining weeks left of summer camp. He has already done so much, not just in the kids, but in myself as well. I see His handiwork every time I see a kid smile and feel loved. I see Him in my girls every time we have bible study and the light bulb of God’s Word goes off in their heads. However, my favorite way is when I see our TeenLeaders from the community stepping up and being a true godly example for the kids. God is on the move here at LOV, and I am so grateful to be a part!