TO BE CONTINUEDˇKˇKˇKˇK.
As I sit this evening and think about this past week at camp I am filled with gratitude for the opportunities I have been blessed with in my life. One of the opportunities this past week was to lead a young 14 years old teenage boy to Christ. Others also came to faith in Christ and youth were challenged through the messages and testimonies given. To watch 104 campers singing and enjoying a week away from the distractions of life and able to have a lot of fun without computers, televisions, phones and video games is truly rewarding. The drama team performed a skit every night that followed a story line about a teenager that accepted Christ at a bible camp and then as he tried to live for Christ his friends laughed at him and were unsupportive. He eventually was drawn away just to realize that the life his friends lived was hollow and had no pleasure. The eventual finish of the week- long skit saw him make right choices towards following God.
As the week ended I was struck with some verses that speak about continuing on for God. One of the things that often takes place at summer camps whether it is this last weeks experience or any other similar type of summer camp; the excitement and encouragement to follow God in a deeper way is heightened by the environment that a spiritually charged time takes. One of the hardest things for youth to do is to continue with the same passion all the year through. It is often known as the ˇ§camp highˇ¨. We all need to figure out what things we need to do in order for our relationship with God to be sustained and also for personal and continual growth in Him. Reading the bible and praying to God are obviously the requisites to understanding and knowing the heart of God and what He desires for us.
Firstly, Philippians 2:12-13 says that we are to ˇ§continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purposeˇ¨. To work out our salvation means to put effort into our belief. To put into practice our daily living what God is doing in us through His Spirit. The outworking is to be done ˇ§with fear and tremblingˇ¨ meaning a reverence for God and His holiness. This includes a complete trust in God and not in ourselves.
Secondly, 2 Timothy 3:14-15 Paul is speaking to his friend Timothy giving him instructions. He says ˇ§as for you continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesusˇ¨. The encouragement here is not only to continue in the learning process, but also that when we are convinced of what we believe and trust, we see God working in and through us in such a way that it leaves no doubt in others that God has His hand on our lives.
Thirdly, in 2 Timothy 3:17 states the reason we need to ˇ§continueˇ¨ is so that we will ˇ§be thoroughly equipped for every good workˇ¨. Acts of kindness and good deeds are something we all can be proud of; but when we have the Spirit of God equipping us through Godˇ¦s word and instilling the right motivation in us, we truly work out on a daily basis and continue the good work that God began in us the day we trusted Him as our own. The summer camp high is not confined to a few days or a week in the summer but can be an ongoing commitment that we value and build into.
By: Pastor David Jones