The First Story:
Our first Monday Club after Camp was spent sharing memories and fun experiences that we had at summer camp. This was a time to watch videos from camp as well as play some favorite camp games. We then opened the floor for students to share what God taught them at Camp. We had 3 male students share in front of all their peers. I was blown away with each of these 3 stories and I want to give you a glimpse into what I was privileged to hear.
The first student to share was a 15 year old boy who has been coming to YFC for a little over a year. He didn’t just share what God taught him at camp but he told his entire life story. He has had a tough life and has experienced a tremendous amount of hardship in his young life. When he was 6 he saw a guy get shot outside his house, he has been in psychiatric wards, his dad has been in and out of jail, he has moved to 4 different states, and he has been in and out of foster care. He is only 15! He went on to say, “All I knew was chaos, so I began to fight. I got into fights at school all the time.” He said that nothing helped him and he just became angrier as his life went on. He tried drugs to cover up this feeling but it only made things worse.
That is when someone invited him to YFC. For the first time in his life he began to hear the Gospel and learn about Jesus. At first he didn’t want anything to do with this and only came to YFC to play basketball. “When I started to really listen to what people were saying at YFC I began to see how much I needed Christ in my life,” he said. After this, the rest of his story was all about how Christ changed his life. “I don’t know where I would be without Jesus,” he declared. “My life is still hard but now I have Christ walking with me,” he said becoming even more passionate.
Two More Stories:
I was encouraged with this but then 2 more students said they wanted to share. The first guy began to say that he has been coming to YFC for a long time and loves it here. He then went on to say that the staff and volunteers have helped him at various times in his life. He then began to say that he is still not sure about the whole “Christian” thing. He admitted that he still had doubts and that God confuses him sometimes. This was a great honest story.
The last student to share began with fun memories he has had at camp over the past few years. He just went on to say, “I know YFC is a place to have fun and where people truly care about me.” His testimony was definitely the most humorous but still showed how grateful he is for YFC.
All 3 of these testimonies were completely different. Some were serious, some funny, some even raised doubts, but they were all real stories. After this night I was reminded that each of our kids has a different story. They are all on separate journeys. Some are really growing in faith while others still have lots of doubts. One thing that each person said was that they like YFC because they are accepted no matter where they are in their journey. The journey never ends and that is why we need a place like YFC, where kids can ask their questions, and truly seek God. We love our kids and we love their stories, because God is the one writing them!