Tuesday at camp was busy as ever. With the strongest winds I have experienced at Sky Ranch, the campers were blown from collecting natural items for art projects to high ropes to playing Malagasy games with Daniela, our international staff member. After a whirlwind of crazy activities, exploring the bible, and discovering the dynamics of the Sky Ranch community, the campers were offered a snack. While snack is intended as nothing more than apples with dip or chips and cheese, snack time is often unexpectedly transformational. It is a time for all the campers to come together into a shared space and freely interact with one another to share stories of the day, goof around or simply interact without being told what to do. However, I have found that the campers are typically hyper aware of how others around them are acting during snack, and therefore feed of each others’ energy.

Connected.  Loving.  Awkward.  Accepting. These are the terms that I find best describe the energy of the snack time space on Tuesday. As the groups gathered in the lodge, the cabin of high schoolers had clumped by the piano and took turns playing a little something and then singing along as a community. But as others heard the music, they too approached the piano to first listen and observe and then join in. By the time one song had been played all the way through, the entire lodge full of campers were singing and swaying together, arms on each others’ shoulders, simply smiling at one other and taking in the moment note by note, breath by breath. While this may not have been a bible study or worship experience directly, I believe that the campers were transformed in that moment. The community came together into a collective, shared, genuine experience. In fact, the theme of the summer, “Come As You Are, Be Transformed for the World” may have best revealed itself through this song jam moment as it opened the space for all campers to come, regardless of their varying backgrounds and experiences, and invest in one collective goal—belting songs.  The energy was shared, the music was genuine, and that time and space will never be created again.  But that is ok.  I am content with knowing that little moments of transformation develop into a life of faith, meaning, and community.

Alexa Schroeder
Onsite Coordinator – Specialists