Name: Autumn Green
From: Peculiar, MO
learning experience has had the greatest spiritual impact in the
development of your life? Explain why.
My parents raised me as a Christian. There is no doubt about it. Every
Sunday my family and I go to church and after that I attend a second
bible study with my peers. Even with all of that, the learning
experience that has had the greatest spiritual impact in the
development of my life has been Camp Barnabas. I have attended this
camp for three years. For the past three summers, during the first
week of July, I pack my bags and head down to Purdy, Missouri. Camp
Barnabas is a camp for disabled persons; all throughout the year
volunteers come to Camp Barnabas hoping to create an experience the
campers with special needs will never forget. In my opinion Camp
Barnabas is one of the many places Christians can come to serve God.
The camp’s goal is to make sure everyone leaves with fun memories
and an unbreakable connection with God. I believe Camp Barnabas has
had the greatest spiritual development with in my life, because I
have been able to explore and establish my own connection with the
Lord, see the way the Holy Spirit works through others, and put my
faith to the test.
During my first two years at Camp Barnabas I was a Barnstormer. My job was
very much like a janitor. My responsibilities included keeping the
camp grounds clean and safe for the campers, as well as serve meals.
During activity time, I was assigned to a group of missionaries and
campers. Waiting tables and cleaning toilets doesn’t sound
impactful in any way, but I learned how to be a servant of God. Camp
Barnabas instilled in me gratefulness and patience. The amount of
work I attended to as a Barnstormer was tiresome. I was constantly on
my feet. During that one week I learned a very valuable lesson: I
learned to serve others, before myself. I realized what God had been
trying to show me. In Hebrews 13:16 it states, “and do not forget
to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is
pleased.” Even though the work was boring and monotonous, I didn’t
do it for myself, but in order to put a smile on someone else’s
face. Camp Barnabas taught me how to be a servant of the Lord, not
because I felt obligated to do so, but because I genuinely wanted to
serve the Lord.
God works in the most miraculous ways, through people, the Bible, and in
life. Camp Barnabas taught me to be patient with the way God works
and to not lose faith. At Camp Barnabas it was fascinating to see how
the light of Christ shines through the campers and missionaries,
including myself. I learned to enjoy the things in life God has
created. Dealing with the stress that comes with camp required me to
seek out the light of God inside myself. Spiritually my life
developed by allowing me to learn to seek God first instead of
rushing blindsided into my struggles.
My third year at camp I chose to be a Missionary. At Camp Barnabas a
missionary is similar to a guidance counselor for an assigned camper.
I was there to assist my camper when appropriate, and to introduce
them or teach them more about Christ. Being personally assigned to a
camper put my faith to the test. I’ll admit my faith rocked back
and forth a lot before Camp Barnabas. Even going to church and bible
study I would often get discouraged about God’s plan for me. At
camp I had to rely on God to help see me through the week. Managing
the care of a person with special needs can be a challenge to deal
with. I had to battle away the stress and different emotions that
came with caring for the campers. I prayed every day and read my
bible. I strengthened my faith in the Lord, and although I still have
questions about my life, I have not become disheartened because I
know God has great plans for me.
As a person, Camp Barnabas has made a huge impact on my life. Camp
Barnabas helped me mature spiritually and mentally. Due to Camp
Barnabas, I became a better person. I was given the chance to follow
the path the Lord created for me. Camp Barnabas has had the greatest
spiritual development in my life because I have been able to explore
and establish my own connection with the Lord, see the way the Holy
Spirit works through others, and put my faith to the test. My
connection with the Lord continues to help me grow stronger in my
faith every day.