This is my 16th summer camp season at New Life. Kind of gives away that I’m not really 27 years old anymore.
I am searching for a job title that captures what I do here at camp. A title that answers the question that I so often get, “What is your role?” “What do you do?”
Today begins our counselor training week. I’ll give the staff a review of emergency procedures from evacuations to lost searches, from action plans to water safety rules, from bloodborne pathogens to documentation and forms. I will discuss child abuse prevention and our job as mandated reporters.
I will give the camp mom speech urging these teenagers and college aged kids to take care of themselves by resting when they should and eating well and choosing healthy foods. Trying to express the importance of personal discipline in meeting the demands and the endurance required for God’s call to serve in Christian camping.
As the summer progresses, I will be a smiling face as campers walk by and visit different activities. I will remind them of mom at home and provide a little bit of security with a quick hug and a kind word.
I will be available to girl teens, staff and campers, to encourage them in their walk with Christ. To share from my treasure chest of experiences, good and bad, as they navigate the path God has placed them on.
I will support my kids as they head to their week of camp. I will review packing lists and share the excitement. I will give them enough space to help them feel independent and allow them to set the tone for my involvement.
I will provide food for my kids with dietary needs so they can feel like they are not isolated. I will try to match the camp menu as closely as possible so they can enjoy something different and just be a camper.
For the kids left at home, I will be the summer program director. I will listen to their hopes and desires for a fun summer. I will work those activities into our busy schedule. I will try to enjoy a time to play and to just be mom instead of homeschool teacher.
As my husband is deployed for the 8 intense weeks of New Life’s summer program, I will absorb some of his responsibilities on the home front and orchestrate times for him to be with our kids, but be sensitive to his needs for rest.
I will lift him up in prayer asking The Lord to give wisdom and to guide his steps as he leads this great camp.
I will support my husband in this endurance event. I will encourage him as he strives to do his best in God’s strength. I will remind him that God has uniquely designed him to fulfill his role as camp director. I will reiterate the many strengths he has from being a Mr. Fix-It to his contagious enthusiasm for camp games, from his deep abiding faith in God to his practice of getting to the heart of each camp staff.
I will seek The Lord when I feel alone, when I feel on the fringe, when I feel left behind, when I feel like I am not an important part of this ministry at New Life.
Sixteen summers with no specific job title. Job titles are great for building a resume or building my self-esteem. However, I am building into lives for the Kingdom. I will stick with the titles of wife, mom, or simply support staff, and I will work on the duties as assigned to the glory of God.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
A throwback picture of Summer Staff