#626 – First Night

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I was tempted to write a review of the Sean Connery and Richard Gere movie First Knight, but I don’t really remember it. I think it was about Lancelot stealing Guinevere from King Arthur, but what woman would ditch Sean Connery for Richard Gere? He’s James Bond.

Instead, as I’m at summer camp with our high school students this week, I thought I’d write about the first night of camp. The first of anything can be very exciting.

The first time I saw The Avengers I literally squealed with delight when they were finally all assembled.

The first time I read Uncanny X-Men 275 I was fully invested in a comic for the first time.

The first time I saw my wife on our wedding day (before the ceremony because nobody wants to wait for pictures after the ceremony) my heart skipped a beat and I was reminded of God’s goodness for bringing such a beauty into my life.

The first night of camp has changed for me over the years.

As a student it was all about staying up as late as possible and trying to find all the cutest girls from the other churches.

As a counselor it was all about trying to get students to go to sleep before 3:00 in the morning.

Now as a youth pastor it’s about making sure all of our paperwork is turned in, our activities are set up and trying to finish a blog post at 12:30 in the morning.

As a student, a counselor or a youth pastor, though, the first night has been and still is filled with a lot of expectation. When I was younger I expected to have an awesome week hanging out with my friends. Now as a youth pastor I have the expectation that God is going to work in the lives of our students and I want to help clear away as many distractions as possible. I know that God is going to work in my life but, more than anything, I want to see him work in the lives of our students.

Expectation, hope and anticipation are all words that describe the first of anything. Expecting to enjoy a movie is great, but expecting God to move and do work is even better. The great thing about our ever-present God is that we can have the expectation that God is going to work, whether it’s the first night of camp, the first of July or just any day that ends in the letter “Y”.

What are some of your favorite memories from the first night of camp?

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