Trying to communicate camp rules and activities to the French campers was challenging enough. Keeping the campers focused and interested during devotional time is a whole different ball game – especially when I’m trying to discuss a chapel message that was given in a language that I don’t understand.
After starting the week off with uninterested campers begging to go play instead of talk about God, I couldn’t help but be frustrated and growing impatient at my inability to reach my group of girls. I couldn’t understand why my girls were so cold to Christ and why they didn’t seem moved at all by the stories of his love and sacrifice. I just wanted their eyes to be opened and their hearts to be full of God’s love. The Lord showed me in a heartbreaking way that it was my eyes that needed to be opened instead.
In our devotional time, we discussed the question: “Where do you talk about God and why?” Expecting nothing more than blank stares, my girls started pouring out confessing that they never talk about God other than here at camp. Some girls admitted they weren’t sure if they believed in God. Others said their parents didn’t believe in God, and the girls were scared to talk about the Lord at home.
My heart broke for the girls as they poured out their fears. Along with so many others in the world, they are scared to follow Christ. God showed me through these girls that instead of expecting a certain reaction or response from people, I need to trust that God is constantly at work breaking down barriers and fears according to his own timing. It’s my job as a Christian to imitate Christ’s character through my words and actions and to plant seeds along the way instead of being the one to try to change anyone’s heart.
Ellie Denton, a student at Texas A&M University Commerce is serving with Go Now Missions at Frontier Lodge in Quebec, Canada.