Can I be honest? This week has been rough.

We are wrapping up week five of our six-week summer camp program and it seems that suddenly, things that have worked well all summer are no longer working. I’m not talking huge disasters (thankfully!) just many minor frustrations which are adding up to a challenging week. It’s been tiring and frustrating and as I fell asleep last night I was in a bit of grumpy mood. My brain focused on all the problems and my wheels were spinning as I tried to determine what I could do to make things go more smoothly.

This morning, though, I woke up with this song stuck in my head. It’s the song that we have been singing each week as the children bring forward their offerings to support our summer mission project, raising money to provide care to mothers and babies in Zambia through World Vision.

I like to think about the goodness of the Lord.
He gives me everything I need and so much more.
I just want to lift my hands and say that I love him.
I just want to lift my heart in praise.

And I want to be thankful. I want to be grateful.
I want to remember all the things that the Lord has done.
I want to be thankful. I want to grateful.

It was a humbling wake up call.

Our theme for the summer is “God is good!” and for this week we have focused on the reminder that “When life changes, God is good!”. We’ve talked each day about Joseph and the ups and downs that marked his life as described in Genesis. Most importantly, though, we identified God’s goodness throughout those highs AND lows.

How silly of me! Even as I taught all week about God’s goodness to Joseph, I was choosing to focus on fixing all of things that challenged me rather than to focus on God’s goodness throughout this week and this summer.

So, as I think about the goodness of the Lord this summer,

  • I’m grateful for a phenomenal group of colleagues (especially Haley!) who are wholly supportive, generous with their time and understanding of some extra chaos.
  • I’m grateful for an unbelievably generous group of adult volunteers.
  • I’m grateful for new partnerships which are challenging us to take advantage of the opportunity to keep kids’ minds engaged as well as their hearts.
  • I’m grateful for a new lunch service partner which has delivered meals on time ALL summer long! (a huge challenge in past summers.)
  • I’m grateful for fire ant killer (and lots of it!)
  • I’m grateful for a patient cleaning crew that is adjusting to our every changing needs this summer.
  • I’m grateful for youth volunteers who signed up for one week to get service hours and ended up coming back for 2 or 3 weeks because they fell in love with their campers.
  • I’m grateful for opportunities to pray for and with families in crisis and in thanksgiving.
  • I’m grateful for opportunities to see leadership development among out teens and young adult leaders.
  • I’m grateful for daily hugs, high fives and laughs.
  • I’m grateful for opportunities to offer (and ask for!) forgiveness daily.

For these and many other opportunities and blessings I want to be thankful and as we enter our last week of camp next week, I want to seek more opportunities to share the Lord’s goodness with our volunteers, campers and families. God is good!