I had the pleasure of spending a weekend at Spring Hill with an amazing group of 4th and 5th graders. I love this age because they are still young enough to roll down a hill for an hour and not get bored. They can play with friends regardless if they are boys or girls. They say what’s on their mind and don’t hesitate to ask questions. They can eat enough chocolate pudding to fill a bathtub!
But at the same time, they are getting old enough to put things together and begin to understand who Jesus is, what He did for them, what it means for Him to be their Best Friend forever. They are beginning to see that worship is more than just singing. They are beginning to see that the Bible is more than a story and that it has a message for them.
These are things you learn when you spend 50 hours away.
50 hours may not seem like very many. But when you have taken away the tv, the video or computer games, ipods, and dsi’s, they seem more like 150. When you add in hiking, horseback riding, Bible verses, paintball, skateboarding, roller blading, zip-lining, high ropes, tie-dying, candle making, singing, drama, games, Jesus stories, food, ga ga ball, snacks, basketball, and a climbing wall to that time, the hours grow exponentially!
You cannot put a number to that time as a child says that they heard God say that they should be a servant and then watch them help a friend. You cannot put a number to that time when you see tears well up in a child’s eyes as they describe the music during worship. You cannot put a number to that time when you see hands raised because someone wants to commit to a Jesus who took on their sins and died so that they could be saved.
50 hours away may not seem like a long time. But to these kids’ lives it means an eternity.