Monday, August 22, 2011

{ CLT 2011 }

Hello friends! I am finally home after two weeks of being gone :) It feels like it's a million degrees in my room right now. I have my obnoxiously loud fan blowing on me in hopes of cooling down! Oh, and I am typing this on my new iPad.. I feel very high tech haha. Summer is quickly coming to a close. *tear*. I love the feeling I have, though, when the summer ends and I feel like I accomplished many things. And I feel like I have grown a lot through out this past summer.

CLT defiantly had the most impact this summer. For the majority of you who don't know what CLT is, it's 'Christian Leadership Training' - a program at Lone Prairie Camp (the best camp btw ;) no bias at all haha) in which you learn more about Christ and your spiritual journey, and of course, leadership skills. This summer I did CLT one and absolutely loved it. I learned an insane amount of stuff about my faith and about myself. Each and every CLT session I left with my minding spinning. Our sessions with Scotty rattled me in a way I can't even explain. It was a large, but extremely good group of CLT One's. I found the group dynamic was really amazing; alot of good, but very different, opinions and views of Christianity, which is something that was very new to me. All my core beliefs were knocked down, and I became vulnerable. But in the best way possible. I suddenly had this total open mind about my faith and I was able to search deeper and really start to understand my relationship with God. Everything I had learned about my faith growing up was challenged. At some points I even questioned this whole Christianity thing. But It was challenged in the best way possible. I no longer felt like a robot who believed in God just because that is what I grew up with. I now had a better understanding of WHY I believe what I believe. And I believe it because I WANT to, not because I am forced to. I used to think of God as this tiny box that I could see and fully understand, and I was looking in at God. But now I realize I am in that tiny box and God is all around me.

One of the big things Scotty told us was to just learn about Jesus. Forget all the long, churchy words and simply study Jesus' life. Read the gospels and learn about how He lead His life on earth. Take that and apply it to our lives. For CLT, we read the book 'The Barbarian Way'. The author talks about living this radical, barbaric Christian lifestyle. Multiple times he compared our lives to that of Jesus'. Explaining that we are called to live crazy lives for the sake of our faith. "..for those of us who embrace the cause of Christ, the cost to participate in the mission of God is nothing less than EVERYTHING we have- it is not always fair or equitable." The barbarian way is about love expressed through SACRIFICE and SERVANTHOOD, which I think is so cool :)

I also learned the significance of prayer. I journaled on July 13 about how I though something was missing at the moment- and that was prayer. I realized that God was so present at camp, but he was not present in my heart. I had been reading scripture, interacting in CLT sessions, but I totally neglected prayer. And I realized that I needed that prayer to keep me going, and to keep my relationship with God growing. Matthew 6:5-8 was a really big help. Jesus is teaching the people how to pray and to be humble when doing so.

In august, I went out to camp for a third week to do support staff for Junior camp. There were only 4 cabins in total, so the there were very few campers. I think the camper to staff ratio was almost 1:1! So Scotty said it was 'extra love on the campers week' this got me thinking about how important it is to love and be selfless in love- thinking about others instead of my own wants or needs. The next morning I was reading Romans and came across some verses that emphasize the importance of love {Romans 13:8} "Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another." {Romans 12:9} "love must be SINCERE."

I feel like each day and each week I took something significant away. I learned more about my faith, I grew spiritually and gained relationships that I will always keep and never forget :). Can't wait till next summer!

With love, peace, and happiness,

"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."
{Hebrews 11:1}

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