My name is Sara Rodriguez and I stepped into the role of Youth Program Manager at Warm Beach Camp in October 2017. I have been working in camp ministry in several different capacities for nine years. I attended Indiana Wesleyan University for my Bachelor of Science in Adolescent Ministries and Leadership. Then I spent two years teaching outdoor education at a camp in Texas while going to Dallas Baptist University for my Graduate degree in Christian Education and Business Ministry.

I started going to camp as a fifth grader. It was a place for me to slow down and take a break from my fast-paced life. At camp, my faith became more than a list of things to check off – I was led to a real relationship with the One who loves me more than anyone ever could. My faith became my own. I grew more confident in my identity and role in the body of Christ, and I made lifelong friends. The impact camp had on my life has driven me into full-time camp ministry.

I am finding myself in my dream position here at Warm Beach Camp. I am beyond excited for what the summer holds. This year, the program will revolve around the book of Ephesians. God gave me this idea one day when I was praying about a theme that could meet the needs of all our campers. Wherever a camper is in their faith journey, there is something special and powerful for them this summer. Ephesians covers everything from knowing you belong to Christ, to finding your identity in Him, to taking action as a follower of Christ. I cannot wait to see how the Lord works in the lives of the campers this summer.

This summer’s theme verses will be Ephesians 2:4-5:
“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.”

Almost all our summer camp guides (counselors) have been hired, and are now spending time preparing for this summer’s ministry to serve campers. It is going to be a summer your camper will never forget!

Be sure to sign up today on the website before sessions fill up! www.WBYouthCamps.com

I look forward to meeting you all this summer.

SaraRodriguezSara Rodriguez
Youth Program Manager

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I lived in hiding for over a decade, presenting a façade to everyone I met. I was the loving, respectable, stay-home housewife. The honorable mother and godly Sunday school teacher. No one knew the shame, the secrets I carried.

No one, that is, except God.

He saw my deepest wounds and everything I tried so hard to hide. He knew me well before my husband pulled me off the streets of Tacoma. He saw the high school dropout who spent more time drunk than sober, the girl without hope, or even a thought for her future.

But His vision, His love, went much deeper, and His call reached much farther than merely granting me salvation. He wanted to give me deep, unyielding spiritual and emotional freedom, the kind that says, “Yeah, I was a mess. I still am. But you know? That’s okay, because I’m loved and eternally accepted.”

And so, bit by bit, God began to expose and then uproot all the lies I had come to believe about myself. Lies like, “I’m unlovable. Ignorant. Shameful. Worthless.” He began to replace those lies with truth until, over time, I came to believe everything He said about and to me. The process was far from quick or easy, but it’s one He wants to take us all on.

Often, when we think about grace, we stop at salvation, which is awesome enough. But God wants to take us to total freedom so we can walk into any room, encounter any hardship, and remain strong and unshakable in our identity in Him. He wants us to give His voice prominence over all the others that bombard us each day, and learn to rest, truly rest, in His love for us.

Living loved is more than the intellectual consent that God loves us. It’s allowing the truth to permeate so deeply that our hearts begin to heal, our perceptions become clear, faith replaces fear, and we know-know-know with every fiber of our being that we are God’s beloved daughters.

Join us May 4-6, 2018 at Refresh Women’s Event and learn how to walk in love’s deep, all-consuming freedom. Learn More

Jennifer SlatteryJennifer Slattery
Refresh Women's Event 2018 keynote speaker
Founder of Wholly Loved Ministries

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We love good beginnings. They are filled with hope, optimism, and joy. Some of my favorite new beginnings are newfound love, babies, weddings, faith, and a new favorite place to go for rest and renewal.

Warm Beach Camp is a place of new beginnings in faith, relationships, and personal growth. Life changing decisions are made that alter the direction of a life forever.

New beginnings also serve as reminders to those who have been down the road a ways in life, to go deeper and further. Watching “new love” can remind us to tend to the love of our life. Seeing a couple get married can remind us of the covenant love we made in marriage. Holding a new born baby can spark the need to keep cultivating love and attention with our children and grandchildren of all ages. Finding a new favorite place for rest and renewal reminds us of the significance of tending to our own soul. What once began as new, challenges us to go deeper and further in life and faith.

Warm Beach Camp encourages people to go deeper and put down roots that grow deep into the soil of Jesus. Paul wrote to the church in Colossae with this exact encouragement: “And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your life be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:6-7

I was a junior in high school when I made a significant decision to be a follower of Jesus. I remember that decision. The day is a reference point as clear today as it was the day I made it. When I see people make new faith decisions at Warm Beach Camp, it reminds me to go deeper and further in my life with Christ. Paul gives two images:

  1. Deep roots in Him: You are planted in Jesus - let the core of your life go deep into the soil of Jesus. He is filled with life-saving and life-giving nutrients.
  2. Build on Him: The most stable and strong life is built on the foundation of Jesus Christ.

When we live this way, there is one more thing according to Paul: We will overflow with thankfulness. It is a joy being around people who are thankful.

Celebrate the good start. Then, go deeper and further in Jesus. Let Him fill your heart with overflowing thankfulness.

Ed 80pxEd McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

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As the ministry of Warm Beach Camp takes shape for another year, there is an underlying conviction that the contribution to do good in this world flows from the quality of our relationship with God.

In Psalm 139:23-24, King David declares the following: “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” The leader of the nation recognizes that the quality of his relationship with God has a direct relationship to his influence and effectiveness as king.

In Galatians 5, Paul writes to the followers of Jesus in Galatia to embrace the freedom in Christ, and out of the relationship with Christ, focus on serving other people in love. Paul quotes from the Old Testament, “For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: Love your neighbor as yourself.” Paul understands the church’s relationship with Jesus is meant to express itself to people in love.

Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center is focusing on the quality of our relationship with God. There is a culture of seeking God, listening for His leadership, and responding to His guidance. Out of the growing quality of our relationship with God, we seek to serve and love effectively for the common good of individuals and society. In every program, event, and act of hospitality, we share a desire to help people and draw them towards Jesus through our words and actions.

Join us in meaningful relationship with God, through Jesus Christ. Join us in bringing good to many people through camps, retreats and conferences that invite people to a better place and space in their lives.

Our hope is that everyone who comes to Warm Beach Camp could say the following: I am in a better place in my life because of time spent at Warm Beach Camp, connecting with God and receiving the love people extended my way.

Ed 80pxEd McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

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No man should miss this year’s Men’s Advance weekend, March 2-4, 2018, because you’ll get to see a live human getting grilled. And you thought the ropes course was going to be exciting! Actually, we plan to make our main sessions interactive as I, the keynote speaker, take live questions from the audience. Why would we do this? We found this approach scratches a real itch where men clearly need a forum to ask thoughtful and difficult questions about God, the Bible, or Christianity.

What kind of men and what kind of questions? Men who sometimes feel like their questions are taboo and can’t be asked in church, or have been told to “just have faith and believe.” Men who are young in the faith, and those struggling with difficult Bible passages which just don’t make sense. Older disciples feeling their faith tested by the challenges of skeptical friends. Men who are struggling to integrate truth they’ve been taught with the truth claims of Scripture. Men stumbling over Christian stances on moral issues. Men who are seeking and have serious doubts about Jesus because some part of the Christian faith seems utterly unbelievable.

Men’s Advance is a great opportunity to talk openly about the Christian faith and its relationship to reasons and evidence. We’ll explore the basis for the Christian faith from the ground up, which will build you up and challenge you to be a more confident, winsome witness to God’s grace in a dark world. And, as promised, part of the adventure will be opening the door wide to express your questions, doubts, or Bible problems.

So, warm up the BBQ! Bring your friends and watch me be grilled. Don’t forget to register!

thumb RickThiessenRick Thiessen, AC3 Senior Pastor
2018 Men's Advance Keynote Speaker

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Warm Beach Camp’s annual Men’s Advance weekend kicks off on Friday, March 2, 2018. Whether listening to the keynote speaker, pastor Rick Thiessen, participating in breakout seminars, or through recreational activities, unique opportunities are available to equip participants for the challenges of life.

A team of gifted ministry leaders from around the Pacific Northwest will share their stories of God’s strength and love through the gospel of Jesus Christ, and how He can change lives. One of the breakout session leaders is Mike Henry, Freedom Ministries Pastor from Sage Hills Church in Wenatchee, Washington. Mike’s passion is to see believers set free to fully trust and live out their faith in Jesus. In 2017 over 150 believers attended seminars and workshops at Sage Hills Church to help them identify and break patterns of doubt, bad habits and self-defeating belief cycles that keep us in spiritual slavery. This impactful material and quality teaching will be brought to Men’s Advance.

Perhaps you’ve had one of those rollercoaster seasons of life? One where there are highs and lows, but often more lows than highs? Toward the end of last summer, I found myself inhabiting a heart space I can best describe as a sort of ‘transactional survival.’

“We tend to want to blame Satan, but often we are self-deceived. We disregard our own bad behavior and ungodly belief-cycles.” – Mike Henry, Freedom Ministries

It was only through an intentional time of prayer and reflection that the Holy Spirit revealed the destructive ways I was looking at life. More than that, the Lord graciously brought me to an honest moment where I could admit I had helped plow the soil and sow the seeds of my own discontent rather than trust Him fully with the outcomes. Praise be to Jesus, I was no longer stuck, but was free!

It is this freedom in Jesus Christ that sparks passion in the leadership and speakers for Men’s Advance. It is a weekend for men who want to encounter Jesus, and be strengthened and empowered for life. Won’t you come and join us?

Information and registration for Men’s Advance can be found at: www.Mens-Advance.com.

Scott Rossiter
Warm Beach Camp Foundation Director

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In following God, there is a tension everyone deals with: Allowing the everyday pleasures and desires in the world to move us away from experiencing the love God has for us. This is a real challenge because the needs, opportunities, and demands of the world are a constant everyday reality. God often gets marginalized or eliminated in our time, thinking, and community.

In the Bible the following is written in the book of 1 John 2:15-16: Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.

Eugene Peterson, in The Message, interprets this passage as the world squeezing out the love of God in our lives.

Any of us following God don’t get up in the morning saying, “I want my love for God squeezed out of my life today.” The truth is, we have a desire for a deeper presence of God and His love in our lives moment by moment.

A practical question emerges: What can I do to keep God and His love the priority of my life? Here are a few recommendations:

  • Spend time with God: Love in any relationship is best nurtured and safeguarded by spending time together. The same is true with God. Explore ways of spending time with God that work for you.
  • Talk and listen to God: The nature of prayer is dialogue – talking and listening. The apostle Paul encourages us to pray all the time. What he is saying is keep the communication going all day long.
  • Give generously: Giving is the best antidote to falling in love with our own stuff. Giving helps others, and it has the benefit of not letting us grip too tightly to things.
  • Read the Bible: God’s Word has life-giving truth and perspective that help keep us moving the right way with God and guarding against getting lost in the world.
  • Live in community: Be involved in a community of people who are also followers of Jesus. Encourage each other and support each other.

The Warm Beach Camp experience is all about drawing people closer to God in a world that squeezes out God’s love. The next time you come, experience a deeper connection with God and His love.

In Christ,
Ed McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

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The good news of Jesus coming is for everyone. Everyone is invited. Everyone is included.

It is meant to be shared in everything we do. The life He offers to everyone who believes in Him is nothing to be ashamed about. Quite the opposite. His good news is meant to flow through every aspect of our lives.

Interaction with other people is meant to be filled with grace. When truth is shared, it is meant to be shared in love. We are meant to live generously with each other. Sharing with each other sacrificially in times of need.

The good news of Jesus challenges us to love and forgive people when we are in conflict with them. Jesus reminds us to lead from a position of serving.

We are also told that we are not left to do this ourselves. The Holy Spirit has been given to guide us into all truth, comfort us in times of hurt, and to give us the words to say in pressurized situations. The Holy Spirit is an encouragement to come alongside of us.

One thing is asked of all of us: To believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God sent to save us from all that separates us from God.

The Lights of Christmas at Warm Beach Camp is meant to lift up the beautiful truth that Jesus, the Son of God, has come. He is here. No one needs to be separated from God anymore.

From all of us at Warm Beach Christian Camps and Conference Center,
Merry Christmas.

Ed McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

“For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes…” - Romans 1:16

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Lutheran Brethren Family Bible Camp has been going for 69 years. Fifty-five of those years have been in ministry partnership with Warm Beach Camp, forming a family-like relationship. Zoe and her family have been a part of their Family Camp for many years. Her testimony bears witness to the amazing ways God changes lives at Warm Beach Camp.

“I want to thank everyone at Warm Beach Camp for keeping the path clear to the cross all these years. It has made all the difference in our family. For a long time my husband did not know Christ. He is a long haul truck driver, and could be a hard person to live with before Christ. In 2002 he made a commitment to come to camp with our family. Towards the end of the week, he responded to the invitation to meet and accept Jesus Christ.” 

The positive change in the family was dramatic and enduring. Zoe cherishes the photos of her husband being ordained an Elder in the Lutheran Brethren Church a few years later. Her family has been forever changed for the good.

One of her sons, a Navy sailor, recently recounted how much it meant to him to attend Lutheran Brethren Family Camp through his childhood years. He even decided to donate campership money so others could continue to come and grow up with the same significant experience at camp. 

Zoe’s story illustrates the ways that life changes here. We are grateful for all those who work faithfully in partnering with us to keep the path clear to the cross.

Ed McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

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It came in the mail... a bulky envelope from a partnership ministry who sent several kids to summer camp who have experienced some hard things in life. Donors of Warm Beach Camp made camp possible for these kids by giving to the Kids 2 Camp scholarship fund.

In the envelope were several thank you notes. Each thank you note read like a precious gift to me. "Thank you for helping me come to camp." read one. Another stated, "I made some really good friends at camp." One camper said, "I really like the horse you gave me to ride, can I ride it again next year?"

A few of the notes talked specifically about camp chapel times. "The chapels were the best part of camp." And, "I really liked the things we talked about."

Each note filled me with gratitude for many reasons:

  1. Every camper had a great experience.
  2. The generosity of people giving to Kids 2 Camp scholarships makes this possible.
  3. The Warm Beach staff and volunteers did a fantastic job meeting each kid right where they were.
  4. The kids hope they can return.
  5. Several kids grew in their connection with God.

I am so grateful for an entire ministry that bends itself for the well-being of kids, giving them a chance to be loved and connect with God. I am also grateful the kids took time to say thank you.

For all who helped, and will help, make camp possible for kids - THANK YOU.

Ed McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center

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