Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Worship - Morning Song

I spent last night at the Cabin... which has been a weekly routine for about two months now. After putting Natalie to bed and kissing Kelly goodnight I scooted out the door and down the road.

I took the evening hours to refine some thinking/writing that I have been doing in preparation for the summer. This morning I woke up (somewhat with the sun) around 5am. I stoked the fire and then stretched outside on the porch in the cool morning air. After little breakfast and some quiet, I spent a good hour in worship by singing.

I love the cabin! It provides me the freedom to sing loudly, triumphantly, with fist pumps and bellowing "Amens" and everything... without causing anyone else an ounce of discomfort or distraction.

Here's a song that I just could not stop singing. I encourage you to settle in, take a moment to relax - then hit play and close your eyes.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Camp Countdown & Update

Summer is almost here!

Countdown til Camp
30 days

For a few weeks now most of our summer programs have been closed. Four of the six weeks of Shepherds Camp and both weeks of Day Camp are closed... because they are full. There is no room for any more campers in the majority of our summer camps. It has been what I like to call a good problem. More registration forms are arriving daily for the remaining two weeks and we are very close to breaking last year's attendance for the summer.

Please continue to pray for us as we prepare for the summer.
We are still in need of:

- A Nurse for one week of camp (June 28th - August 5th)

- A few more Counselors to serve for two weeks (or more)
- A few Night Watch Staff(staff who serve by working 3rd shift)

- We have one more open week for the James Project (June 14-26)

Give me a call or shoot me an email if you or someone you know would be available to meet these needs for the summer.


Ben Myers
Arrowhead Bible Camp

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Tree of Iniquity

Last week I was with Kelly, riding on the golf cart from the main building over to the house. As we passed by the camper cabins I looked at Kelly and said, "I'm gonna pull that tree out of the ground. That tree is crooked and ugly and it has to go!" Kelly quietly rebuttaled saying, "No it's not. It's fine. The tree looks fine." I protested declaring, "The tree is as ugly as sin!" (yeah I know... lame, but so is the tree). It was then that God reminded me of a sermon I heard earlier in the week. The pastor mentioned that the word iniquity which carries the idea of - something that grows crooked, not straight, out of line, in a disjointed and warped direction. Seeing this disfigured tree also jolted me back to when I was 17. I vividly remember taking trips out to the Susquehanna River (near Columbia) to hike out and sit on the remains of some old pillars where train tracks crossed over a creek running into the river. It was there that I would spend time reading and memorizing scripture. One of my favorites was Psalm 25 which mentions the iniquity of youth.

That is some pretty heavy stuff coming from a pine tree at camp.

During the Soul Thirst retreat this past weekend that tree... the
tree of iniquity as I have declared it to be was on my mind, especially as we approached the topic of being aware of God's presence. On one hand I was intrigued to discuss, practice and wrestle with being present in the presence of Jesus. On the other hand I had this stereotypical image plaguing my mind. My thought was that the person who is aware of God moment by moment, each day, every day is disconnected from reality, distracted by everything, pausing every few minutes to comment on how blue the blue sky is or how that cloud looks like a cross and that cloud just looks pretty.

I discussed this predisposition with the group and our facilitator Doug. He smiled and said, "We'll get to that. Don't worry, tomorrow we're going to go outside and look at stuff." We all laughed a little even though I was serious and I think a few others in the room had the same mindset. As the weekend continued we spent time in scripture and putting more words around being in the presence of God. We also spent time in stillness and practicing awareness/attentiveness. Throughout each day all of those things mingled together with meals, rest, singing, prayer and whatever random topic we were discussing.

On Saturday while we were discussing Mary's responses to being in Jesus' presence this question was asked, "Do you ever go from one task to another all the while thinking about that next task, envisioning yourself working on or completing that task and/or deciding on the details of that task?"

I immediately thought about times when I am walking or riding from my house over to the main building office. I am always thinking about what's next. I see my list of things to do and the computer screen in front of me. I begin prioritizing my list and strategizing ways to get more work done.

Then the comment was made, "When we do just that we are anything but aware and attentive... especially to God's presence. We blow by opportunities to serve others, meet needs, be a blessing, encounter creation, or even to simply rest when we are already somewhere else doing something else."

So there it was... staring me right in the face. I do not live moment by moment and it causes me to miss the presence of God. I want
to be seen by Jesus instead of wanting to see Jesus. I miss things like that crooked tree or the wind on my back as I walk through green grass that was brown only last week. Unfortunately, I also pass by people... people who have needs. People who are more important, more valuable than the tasks of my job.

That is even heavier stuff coming from a pine tree at camp.

I am thankful for all that God showed me and convicted me of on the retreat... and at camp by way of the
Tree of Iniquity. My hope and prayer is that God will continue to give me a greater awareness of His presence moment by moment.