“Sankanac” means something like flowing waters in an Indian tongue and was named that since it sits next to French Creek. The theme verse is Zephaniah 3:17, which says, “The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love; He will joy over thee with singing.” We really felt the beginning of this verse this week – “The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty!”
It was an all girls camp, but since it was the last week of camp for the summer, the attendance was down. We had about 92 girls, ages 7-16. They divide the girls up into 3 “villages”: 7-10, 11-12, and 13-16. But, we spoke to two different groups: 7-10 and 11-16. I gave my testimony Sunday evening to the big girls and we both gave our testimonies Monday evening to the little girls. Monday-Friday, I spoke a half an hour a day on missions to each age group.
Tuesday evening, we were asked by the Camp Director if we would speak to 12 girls who were at Horse Camp. See, Sankanac has HUGE grounds and they allow a horse camp two weeks out of the summer to use the property. They aren’t part of Sankanac, but it is a Christian camp and they use the facilities for sleeping, meals, and some of their activities. Now, the girls that were in Sankanac were definitely “churched” girls. We figured the girls in horse camp would be the same way, so all week, we planned on doing our Peru presentation. But, then, Thursday afternoon, Brian said, “I really feel like we should give our testimonies. I just don’t feel comfortable giving our Peru presentation.” So, last minute, we changed our minds.
We went up to the horse camp around 8:15 Thursday evening and spent the next 15 minutes sharing our testimonies. When I finished, the girls looked lost. Like, really, really clueless. So, I asked if they had questions. That is when the landslide began. One 14 year old girl said, “They’ve been talking all week about getting saved and having your sins forgiven. I just don’t get it. Will you answer some questions for me?” I ended up taking her upstairs and we talked for a solid hour. Her questions were HARD! She was sincerely seeking. The whole time I was upstairs with her, Brian was downstairs fielding questions from the other eleven girls. They were full of questions like, “Is it wrong for me to pray to a picture of Jesus?” “How can I be sure I’m saved?” One of by one, girls started asking the two counselors if they could speak with them privately. After an hour upstairs with the one girl, she finally prayed and received Christ as her Savior. Three others downstairs did the same thing! One more girl asked if she could talk with me and I spent another half hour with her answering questions before she prayed as well. When all was said and done, five girls received Christ as Savior and one rededicated her life to the Lord. Wow.
Friday morning during missions time, I asked the girls if any felt the Lord calling them into full-time ministry and six raised their hands! Two talked with me personally afterwards to confirm that. One counselor told me her girls have been talking all week about the missions times and want to know how they can be a missionary now! One counselor caught us as we were leaving camp this morning to tell us that we had challenged her to do a short-term trip with BCM and pursue a life in the ministry.
As we were driving home this morning, we both turned to each other and said, “We are SO DOING exactly what we were made to.” This week was so worth our time, Brian’s discomfort, and our energy. It was awesome to see the Lord work and to be an empty vessel for His service. We know we could never have answered the questions Thursday evening or been influential at all if we hadn’t first been willing to be used by the Lord.
And it was a blast. 😀
Due to privacy laws, we could not take pictures of the girls themselves, but here’s a few pictures of the camp that we took last year while at Candidate Orientation (which was held here as well). It’s a beautiful camp! Look it up on the web: http://www.campsankanac.org/ If you live in our area, you should definitely look into their summer camping for your kids, retreats for yourself, the Call Outdoors ministry for the hunters in your family, and education opportunities for your children (especially if you homeschool). Sankanac is home to a Creation Education program and a building that was part of the Underground Railroad.