Teen Camp is Over :(

We had a great year at teen camp! It was so great to have 5 campers and 3 staff from the Midwest, I can’t imagine this group dynamic without them! The campers grew close together and they drew closer to God as well. The testimony campfire on Saturday night was marked by an amazing vulnerability that can only be explained by God’s spirit moving among us. The campers trusted and respected one another as they shared about what God was doing, and I was really blessed by all of them.

Today begins something that we are trying for the first time. The campers had daily Bible studies in their tribes through the first 5 chapters of 2 Corinthians. The campers and staff came home from camp with a devotional guide that will take them through the rest of 2 Corinthians and we’ll be providing 2 opportunities a day to sign onto Skype and continue the discussion (11am and 7pm). I’m exciting to see how God uses this opportunity to continue speaking to us through his word. Please keep praying for the campers and for the staff. The days during camp are often some of the most exciting and encouraging during the year and the days following camp are often a low. Please pray for God’s protection and encouragement of them.

One last thing, there are less than 2 weeks left before adventure camp. If your camper (or for campers that are reading this) is still interested in joining us: it isn’t too late! Register Early Register Often! (campgilgal.com)

2 Corinthians 5 Devotional Guide

2 Corinthians 5
Sample Big Idea: We long to be reconciled to God and at home with him.

What is the big idea? Can you summarize a couple of the bigger concepts or ideas?
What are verses that stick out to you?
Read verses 1-5. What is our earthly tent? What is our building from God? What does it mean to groan? What does Paul say we groan for? What do you think that it means to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling? How can something be swallowed up by life? What is a deposit? What does it promise/ensure? What is the deposit God has given us? What is the purpose God made us for? What has been guaranteed to us?
Read verses 6-10. Because of these things, what are we/can we be confident in? What do you think of when you think of home? What does living by sight tell us? How is living by faith different? Why does Paul say that we live by faith and not by sight? How can we live by faith when what we see is right in front of us? How is it possible to say that he would prefer to be with God and away from his earthly body? Have you ever felt that way? Why/why not? How is it possible to please God? What does it look like for your goal to be to please God (think about your heart, your mind, and your actions)? What do you think about Paul talking about the judgment seat of Messiah? What does this look like? What kinds of things is he looking for? How is it possible for anyone to be forgiven and acceptable before him?
Read verses 11-15. What is it to fear the Lord? What are they trying to persuade men of? What does it mean to compel someone or to be compelled? What would it look like if your actions were compelled by the love of Messiah? Who is the one who died that Paul is convinced of? How does this mean that all died? How have you died? What does it mean to live for yourself? What does it mean to live for Y’shua?
Read verses 16-21. How is it possible to leave behind a worldly point of view? What does it mean to be new? How can being in Messiah cause you to become a new creation? How can you choose ‘newness’ when your ‘old self’ keeps creeping in? What is reconciliation? Why is reconciliation with God necessary? How is it that we are reconciled to God? What is an ambassador? What does it mean to be someone God is making his appeal through? Read verse 21 again out loud. Who is the one who had no sin? Why did he become sin for us? Why did we need that? How can we become the righteousness of God? How can you live out this truth today?

2 Corinthians 4 Devotional Guide

2 Corinthians 4
Sample Big Idea: Because of God’s glory and mercy we do not lose heart.

What is the big idea? Can you summarize a couple of the big ideas or concepts?
What are verses that stick out to you?
In verse 1 it says “therefore…we have this ministry,” what do you think the ministry is that this is talking about?
Why does Paul say that we do not lose heart? What does it look like to lose heart?
Verses 2-4 talks about veiling using a lot of other words. What are other words that mean the same thing as veiled from these verses? What is veiled and what is revealed?
Read verse 4-6. Now read Hebrews 1:1-3, Colossians 1: 15, John 1:1-5; 14. What does it mean that Messiah is the image of God? What do images communicate? What are some things we able to learn and know about God because Y’shua came and dwelt among us? What does light do? How can the knowledge of Y’shua be like light?
Read verses 7-12. What is Paul saying in verse 7: what is this treasure that we have? What do you think the jars of clay represent? How is it possible to face the things in verses 8 & 9 but not give up? How have you experienced hard times in your faith and not given up? What could you say to someone facing hard times in their faith?
How can you carry around the death of Y’shua? How is it possible for Y’shua life to be revealed in someone’s body? What in the world does that mean?
How are we who are alive constantly being given over to death? How is life at work in us?
Read verses 13-18. What are things that we believe and therefore speak? What are things that we can’t help but talk about or share or think about? Who will be raised? Where will they be raised to? How do we know? What does the thanksgiving come from? What does it accomplish?
So why don’t we lose heart? What is the eternal glory that this chapter speaks of? What are the things that are unseen that we are told to fix our eyes on? What are some of the seen things that are temporary?
How can you use this time at camp to train yourself set your eyes and attention more on the unseen eternal things and less on the seen temporary things?

2 Corinthians 3 Devotional Guide

2 Corinthians 3

Sample Big Idea:We can have confidence, not because of ourselves—but because of God’s glory.

What is the big idea? Can you summarize a couple of the themes?
What are verses that stick out to you?
What is a letter of recommendation? When do you need one/when do they come in handy? How is it possible for people to be letters of recommendation? What does that mean?
In verse 3 what are the tablets of stone that it is talking about?
What is competence? (Think about when you might say/think someone was incompetent—it’s the opposite) What is the difference between competence in ourselves and competence from God? How can we take confidence in our competence from God? Why is this necessary/important?
What is glory? What are things that we talk about having glory or being glorious? How is this the same or different as the glory Paul talks about in verses 7 and forward?
What are things that Paul talks about in these verses having glory or being glorious? How does this glory function? What does it look like or do?
Verses 13-18 talk about veils and unveiling. What are some things that are veiled? What does the veiling do or accomplish? How is Moses’ veiling (read Exodus 34:29-35) or the law’s veiling like this? What happened with Moses’ veiling? Keeping Moses in mind, what does it mean that we have unveiled faces in verse 18?
Read verse 18. What does it mean to reflect God’s glory? How is it possible to be transformed into his likeness? How is this something that you have seen in your life, even in a small way?
Paul says that this transformation is at work in the hearts and lives of believers. How can you ask for more transformation from/by God in your life while you are here at camp?

Afternoon at the ropes course

This afternoon the men and ladies had a chance to do the lower ropes course (a team building challenge course, led by Nature Valley) and the high ropes course (wearing harnesses and helmets and supervised by trained staff). It was amazing. There will be many more photo posts after I get them all uploaded, but I wanted to start somewhere. ALL of the campers completed the high ropes course! I am going to say that again: ALL OF THE CAMPERS COMPLETED THE HIGH ROPES COURSE! There were a few who were nervous, but they decided that the opportunity to participate was too great to let it pass by. It was awesome to see them grow in trust and confidence. Today was a very proud day in Camp Gilgal!

Some of the ladies rocking their helmets.
Some of the ladies rocking their helmets.
Twister closed out the zipline in style!
Twister closed out the zipline in style!
The boys before they got up the wall.
The boys before they got up the wall.
The boys after they all got up the wall.
The boys after they all got up the wall.