I see Jesus all the time and I see Him everywhere, and because of the times we live in…I see Him most often as He uses the hands and feet and voices of His followers…to love on and feed and heal and bring comfort to and companionship to so many who at some moment in time find themselves lost and wounded and sometimes just flat out broken.
And I am thankful everyday for His tender mercies and perfect compassion in these dark times we can find ourselves in… BUT.. I gotta tell ya….what a joy to see Jesus, reflected in the faces and hands and voices of His followers as they provided an amazing gift to hundreds of children in our community…and to their parents, who were given the precious gift of a few hours of “whatever they need to do and can’t with kids around” time.
We heard about this thing, this KABO Day Camp deal, and realized we had missed some of the days this was provided. So we threw kids into the vehicle…drove out to Lakeside Church, not quite sure what to expect and we were drop-jawed.
There were volunteers everywhere…starting with the registration people who remained calm and gracious during a flood of hyper, anxious kids from Kindergarten through 12 years old. …and I think maybe way more in number than they could have imagined. They made sure the kids were registered…emergency info completed, and receiving their age appropriate and informative “ tongue depressor” necklaces. They were served free lunch by more Jesus-with-skin-on people., then instructions for each age group, which included a reminder of not only how to get from place to place…but how to be kind and courteous toward each other… and off the large mob went, scattering toward the colorful, carnival like field whereas the afternoon progressed they would move between a dunk tank..slip and slides..horseback riding..pontoons…fishing…swimming while supervised by a certified lifeguard., great games..story telling…a mid afternoon snack…to name only some of the activities. This crazy love gift happened every Tuesday and Wednesday from noon to 4:30 at no cost to the families….but with an unbelievable sacrifice of time and resources and sanity for those who lay their own needs aside to respond in obedience when Jesus said…”let’s do something beautiful for the kids and parents in our community.”
I am so happy for Jesus, that, as deeply troubling and sad things need His constant attention..He is also able to relax and laugh as He slips and slides with the children…smile as His hands grip a fishing pole together with a kid who just caught their first fish…lay in the shade and listen to a good story..and help a child aim true to send another kid into the cold water of the dunk tank.
Thank you Kitty Shipshock for listening to Jesus first and having such an open-and-ready-to-serve-Jesus heart…thank you to Greta Nelson for her love for Jesus..her faithfulness and love for so many children for so many years…thank you Lakeside and New Hope churches…and any other churches that were involved and thank you to the businesses and other community resources that helped make this sweet, sweet thing happen.