Courageous Camping

Shawn Marler June 6, 2016

“Courageous!” This word best describes the spirit of the young men that arrived at Camp Rockmont today. Many of these campers are here for their very first time. Their courage has been on display as they’ve navigated a brand new place, cultivated new friendships, and learned the rhythms of the camp program. Even as I sat this afternoon with a few campers who were working through some feelings of homesickness, I made a point to help them see the courage within their hearts that has carried them here and that will see them through the session. Courage permeated these 600 acres on this opening day, and it will carry us into a week of adventure ahead. It’s going to be a week full of fun and marked by growth all along the way!

After parents departed in the early afternoon, camp was buzzing with campers playing and completing their swim tests. I was amazed by the fact that even with a little afternoon rain, the campers’ energy was high and continually eager for the next thing. We shared in a delicious dinner of baked chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls, salad, and fresh cut fruit. We even celebrated the first day of the camp season with ice cream for dessert!

What followed was an evening that introduced campers to the fullness of the camp experience. Buckeyes (Cabins 1-6) played a multi-team capture-the-flag style game called Risk, a Rockmont favorite. Birches (Cabins 7-12) were found in the Gym playing Battleball, which is a Rockmont classic, our very own style of dodgeball. The Hemlocks (Cabins 19 & 26) strengthened their cabin bonds through group activities on the lower fields, an essential task before heading into the forest for their camp out in a couple days. Poplars (Cabins 27-28, & 33) and Sycamores (Cabins 43-44) headed up the mountain to Council, a rich Rockmont tradition around the campfire, a place where young men are invited to consider what it means to live as a godly young man. Meanwhile, Adventure Week campers (Cabins 13-18, 21-22, & 185) could be found touring camp, catching a glimpse of all the fun and excitement to come this week while getting to know their counselors and fellow cabinmates all the more.

As we settled down for bed, our nightly devotion brought us to the story of Zacchaeus. This, too, is a story about courage, particularly about courage that’s born out of curiosity. Zacchaeus climbed the Sycamore tree because he wanted to see Jesus more clearly. That’s the invitation that we’re offering to our campers this summer, to embody that same courage and curiosity and to seek the same result. We’re eager to begin another day of camp tomorrow and courageously walk into the bigger story that is being written here at Rockmont this summer.


Shawn Marler

This evening’s Bible story…
Story: Zacchaeus
Scripture: Luke 19:1-10
+ Where do you connect with the story?
+ What’s the good news?

Leave A Comment


Your email will be kept private. *Required Fields

Back to news