Interesting thing about the human heart… it’s an organ essential for “life” but it’s also an organ essential for life. One can go an entire “life” with a heart only used for pumping blood or one can allow the Holy Spirit to work and open the heart to allow life. The difference being simply getting by with a pulse or allowing the soul to open, thus being a conduit of the Holy Spirit in the world.
A word of caution though; allowing life allows a heart to be broken, crushed and yet allows the possibility of being tenderly massaged, stretched and grown at the same time. A paradox only God can properly navigate within each one of us.
I have been a counselor at Teen Leadership Camp for several years. This past year I spent several hours in prayer sessions prior to camp asking for protection for campers and counselors, prepped hearts, willingness to hear/grow and (here’s the dangerous part) connection with campers. Holy Schnikies did I get more than I bargained for…
I’m not sure if it was what Christ was/is doing in me, doing in the kids, prayer over the camp or some other divine circumstance (sneaking suspicion it’s a combination of all the above and more…) but last year’s camp wrecked me in a beautiful way. I have never had more kids hug me or have the desire to hug more of them. From thirteen to seventeen it was magnificently clear these kids are starving for care and affection from safe people and my little heart is overwhelmed at the opportunity to provide a sliver of hope in that arena.
I went into the weekend open to the idea of mentorship “or something”. With the weekend over, I’m in awe of the need and in desperate need of prayer for which way to go. Group help, monthly gatherings, one-on-one-mentorship… There is so much need… And we serve a God that wants to bless us by being engaged in their lives.
I’m reminded of the story on a poster in a friends bathroom which read something along the lines of; “There were millions of starfish washed up upon the shore. A little boy was saving starfish by picking them up one at a time and throwing them back into the ocean. A “grown-up” asked the little boy what he was doing; to which he replied in a boyishly firm declaration, “I’m saving the starfish!” The man said, “Boy, look at all these starfish, you can’t possibly make a difference.” To which the little boy responded by picking up another starfish and throwing it into the ocean and said, “I made a difference to that one.”
William Wallace said, “Every man dies. Not every man really lives.” I’m saying this as much to myself as anyone reading. Are you willing to make a difference even in a single younger person’s life? Will you allow the Holy Spirit to pour His blessings through you? Will you choose life?
…TLC Camp Counselor