Each year at Sunshine we look forward to summer. And it’s not just because we’re weary from cold snaps and single digit weather. It’s because we know that summer is such a critical season for God speaking to young people’s hearts. Our youth also look forward to summer. It’s a break from school and their ordinary schedule. But while they are excited about outdoor adventures and fun camping games, we watch with great anticipation for those moments of “epiphany.” Sometimes it comes through a fireside chat, a morning devotional, or even a game of pickup basketball. Whichever way it happens, it’s always astounding to witness the words of the gospel becoming real in the life of a young person.
All year long, we’ve made our own attempts at creating these moments. Through weekly Bible lessons, we introduce youth to who Jesus is. We demonstrate the love of Christ through mentoring and discipleship. Yet it isn’t always clear whether the lessons and words are sinking in. Certainly, it can be a challenge to focus on one youth, especially when school lets out and dozens of kids are swarming into the after-school programs. There’s a rush of excitement at these times (along with some organized chaos)!
But as young people leave for camp each summer, the pace of life slows down. The settings become more intimate, inviting deeper conversation. Hearts are softened. Lifelong friendships are formed. Fellowship takes place. In other words, the expression of God’s love becomes clear in the fullness and glory of His creation. The gospel transforms into a living and active experience. It becomes real.
We work diligently through the winter and spring, while eagerly awaiting the summer season. It brings warmth and light (everybody enjoys the sunshine); but more importantly, it leads to astounding moments of transformation in the lives of young people.
Your gift of $300 enables us to send a child to camp this summer. We would love to be able to send 80 of our youth to KAA, Young Life Camp, or our Montana experience. Please consider helping to create an amazing summer for our youth.