sometimes i have to remind myself that the devil uses these kinds of things to make me doubt the goodness of God. to make me second guess the words i wrote in the last post.
but God is good. and He never changes, even if the circumstances do. which means that He is good, even now, when things are difficult.
that was a melodramatic way to start the entry, but it’s been on my mind and it’s an honest expression of my feelings and things that i’ve been going through so far this week. it’s a challenging week as far as campers go. it’s really not that the campers themselves are bad kids at all; i wouldn’t say i have any problem kids this week. it’s just that this week is taking much more energy than usual, especially after last week, where i felt so close to the kids.
that might be adding to it as well. the transition from knowing kids to all of a sudden not knowing them was especially tough this week, simply because i was so attached to last week’s kids. i feel like it’s all surface stuff with this week… i’m not getting to know anyone as well as i would like. it’s only wednesday, but that means half the week is over. i’m just not sure. part of me wonders if there will be weeks this summer where i won’t grow close to any of the kids. i hope not! and i feel like it’s just not worth the energy to worry about it, you know?
the campers this week are extremely friendly, and that has helped tremendously. they’re making friends with each other, and i’ve been blessed to see them stick up for one another when random stuff happens. it’s been really cool, sometimes coming from kids i don’t expect. they’ve been really good about forgiving each other for small things and just trying to keep things cool. however, this is a cabin that is very bad at listening. i find myself having to calm myself down a lot more than usual, because even after five or six times of trying to get their attention, they’re still off in their own little world. it can get extremely frustrating sometimes.
we also have a boy with a mild case of autism in our cabin this week. he’s extremely intelligent and seems to like me and gus, but he requires a very specific, intense kind of interaction and attention. he’s not a bad kid by any means, but because of his autism he can get very worked up if someone isn’t there to calm him down, and he tends to have a general lack of awareness when it comes to the fact that gus and i have ten other campers to invest in. but man, is he brilliant! he’s extremely articulate, and his thought process is way above even me it seems at certain times. he just grabs hold of an idea and meditates on it non-stop for the longest time, then comes to talk about it when i least expect it. i think the coolest moment was when he was extremely upset with one boy who pushed him (i think it was an accident; he thought otherwise), and i sat down next to him and talked about the i am third motto, which we’d gone over sunday night. i talked about how it would be third to forgive the boy and forget about what happened. he thought about it for a little bit, then said, "i think you’re right, brad, that forgiving him would be the right thing to do. i actually think i’m going to go apologize to him for yelling when he pushed me." it was great.
so, all in all, it really hasn’t been that bad. i’ve been down in energy this week, and i think it’s been translating into me thinking it’s a bad week, but it’s not. it’s just a different one. challenge is good.
all righty, i have to get some housekeeping done. gotta do some student loan stuff (which isn’t a huge deal, i just don’t want to do it). after that though, i’m going to finish my book. maybe start another one.
thanks to all of you who are reading this. i’d really appreciate prayers for continued energy, especially during this week. please be praying that all the kids this summer would be coming away with an appreciation for God and how being third ties into living a life for Him. please also be praying that the staff would continue to grow close, with our bond in Christ being the main rope holding us all together.
in closing, i’ll pass on a verse that my friend austin wise shared with me today (or maybe yesterday… my cell phone has no reception here so i receive texts at random times):
"’yet even now,’ declares the Lord, ‘return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.’ rend your hearts and not your garments. return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and He relents over disaster." –joel 2.12