Dear Prayer Partners,

It's been a great, long day of the last "full" day of camp. Today, we had our normal activities along with our Royal Tea Party for the girls and Royal Knights for the boys. Thanks to all of the volunteers who helped put on those 2 great events at camp.

The other staple at camp on this night is our end of the week "Variety Show". It's an opportunity for the campers to show off their God-given skills like dancing or singing and a time to just have fun up on stage with the new friends they've made all week. And that's where two stories come from tonight.

One of our counselors had been experiencing a tough day with his camper. Cal, in his first year at RFKC, started to show the normal "pulling away" tendancies that we often see on Thursdays of camp week. Several fits being thrown and just getting upset at the least little thing. At lunch, he got particularly upset when he found out that he would not be able to sing his favorite song at the variety show. The counselor knew of the song and felt the very subtle suggestive lyrics were not appropriate for a RFKC variety show. The counselor instead made the decision that everyone in their particular room would sing one song that was appropriate. Cal wanted nothing of it. He got visibly upset and started crying for a good ten minutes while at lunch. Phrases like "You don't want me to sing that song and now everyone hates me!" were being shouted loudly at the lunch table. Eventually things calmed down and Cal made it through lunch. He had another battle in the late afternoon when he refused to go to Chapel. The counselor was sorta at his wits end at this point and another staff member convinced Cal to go onto Chapel.

Then we get to the variety show. When it came time for the group to perform, Cal grabbed the mic and begin to the lead the group in singing. Very quietly at first but he got louder and louder as the crowd showed it's excitement for the act and his confidence began to grow. Then the counselor got down on a knee (at Cal's eye level) and begin to sing alongside Cal and that made Cal's face even light up more. It was a special moment for the two would had quite the day together as they embraced at the conclusion of the song with the crowd cheering in the background. Quite the moment for all of us.

And then there was "the moment" of the night. A young, overweight girl who had been withdrawn and shy all week decided tonight was the night she would bring down the house. Or maybe "uplift the house" would be a better description. "Marla" was a late addition to the variety show because of her inability to commit to performing her song. But then the time came for her to sing. Right before Marla got up on stage, our wonderful 20 teens had performed (along with most of the 90 campers on stage) a fun, silly, energetic song that became a hit at camp with our Sheepfold them. It's a silly song but one that the kids loved. Listen to it here and you'll think me for it later (HA)! So imagine us trying to quiet the crowd as Marla got up on stage. She began to sing quietly, in acapella fashion (no music was provided). We all continued to quiet the crowd so we could hear what she was singing. As the crown got as quiet as I've ever heard it at the variety show, we started to hear the words Marla was singing.

"The sun comes up. It's a new day dawning. It's time to sing Your song again. Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me, let me be singing when the evening comes."

By now the crowd is quietly singing along with her trying not to drown out Marla's pretty but quiet voice. The campers, counselors and staff all continued singing together in a hushed chorus.

"Bless the Lord, oh my soul. Oh my soul. Worship His Holy name. Sing like never before. Oh my soul. I'll worship Your Holy name."

It was truly a special moment at camp. And one to help us close out this summer season of Royal Family Kids Camp. It truly reminded us all of why we do what we do... 10,000 reasons to be exact.

Thank you for your prayers this week!

Darren


PRAYER REQUESTS:

On this final night, kids will continue to pull away as they see the end of camp getting here on Friday afternoon. Pray for the campers and counselors on Friday. And pray for everyone's safe travel back from camp.