Drawing People to God Through Camp!
Our mission at Warm Beach Camp & Conference Center is to provide Christ-centered environments, experiences, and resources that draw people to God through camping ministries, conferences, and events. We’ve long known the power of camp to draw people to God, but have you also known and experienced the power of a Christian conference? Perhaps after two years of collective isolation, it has even more significance as people hunger for community and reconnection.
In February we had the privilege of hosting such a conference for the Christian Camp and Conference Association (otherwise known as CCCA). The annual Northwest Sectional invites staff and volunteers from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho CCCA camps to come together for 3 days of worship, fellowship, networking, and fun.
You could physically feel and see the impact that being together had on attendees. Just walking through the lobby, hearing the excitement, joy, and enthusiasm was life-giving. One attendee shared, “In times of struggle, it’s encouraging to remember that there are others going through similar situations. We are all in this together.”
People were able to share their struggles and victories over the last year and encourage one another to carry on. We’re not alone. We can carry one another’s burdens.
One attendee, who had experienced God’s healing touch in her own life, felt led to pray for healing for someone she had never even met before. That act of kindness blessed the recipient in a long-lasting way.
Others shared that it was wonderful to have time and space to just “be” with fellow Christian workers; to share life outside of the workplace. Someone else’s takeaway was from a workshop on forgiveness. “You can’t do ministry if you are hurting. Hurting people always end up hurting other people. I didn’t realize that I had some bitterness that I was holding on to and it was limiting my ministry. Now God and I are in the process of working through it and towards forgiveness.”
Many people went home encouraged and challenged regarding God’s work in their own lives.
When a small group of people chooses to get away from their ordinary location and routine to seek God’s face, powerful moments happen. When multiple groups of people gather for such a purpose, the impact is exponential. It’s the power of partnership; people with a common cause are stronger together.
Paul says in Philippians 1:4-5, “In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now.” What a joy it is to partner with others as we share the gospel of Jesus Christ!
-By Marlene Smith, Guest Services Director
Warm Beach Camp & Conference Center