Growing Independence

Shawn Marler July 5, 2014

Happy July 4th!

Heraclitus of Ephesus said, “You can never step into the same river twice because new waters are always flowing around you.” This is certainly true of each new day at camp as the staff and campers continue to develop their skills, trust, and friendships. After six days of camp there is a different complexity and a deeper joy as friendships grow and young men become more confident.

Each new day the sunrise beckons many of our youngest campers to the Eden Hall deck for fishing. They are often rewarded with bream, bass, catfish, and on some days, a giant carp. There are always plenty of stories of broken line and the “one that got away”. Yesterday was no different, as one of our campers, Aiden Dittmer from Tampa, caught a very big bass that was easily 18 inches and weighed three pounds! I am sure this fish will grow in size as the story is told.

Breakfast was biscuits, bacon, fruit, and sugar cereal, which was a special treat to celebrate the 4th of July. Everyone was dressed in red, white and blue! We had a fine time singing patriotic songs and sharing interesting facts of our American heritage.

Breakfast was followed by cabin clean up (yes, your boys make their bed every day at camp) and Morning Watch. Morning watch is a favorite for the guys. We sing old songs, learn new ones, and share encouraging words and scripture to start the day. Some of the songs and lyrics yesterday were: “How, wide, deep, long, and high is the love of God,” “When I grow up I want to be a tree,” “It is good to walk with the Lord,” and an Austrian yodeling song that your sons will need to teach you on the way home.

The rest of the morning and afternoon was devoted to skills. The guys continue to work on their mastery of lessons learned during the week. I watched as some of your sons continued their lessons in Kayaking, Blacksmithing, sailing, paddle boarding, and Fly Tying. These art forms take a young man’s full attention and all the guys were up to the task.

Following afternoon skills all the Bear campers headed up the mountain for their campouts. It’s always exciting to see the youngest campers with their packs hiking into the woods. They will have fun and learn new things on their campout. We have a saying at Rockmont, “people who learn new things each day…expect to learn new things each day.” The same is true for friendship and growth and we are witnesses to this at camp. All the Bear campers completed their hikes and enjoyed a hardy supper in the woods after starting a fire to get warm.

The Deer Campers played powerball and braveheart on the upper fields of camp. These are always special activities because they offer campers just the right balance between guts, glory, and grace.

Evening activity for the Mountain campers was “Movie Night”. After a week of camp, a restful evening activity is a necessary break from all the running around the guys enjoy each day. I hope that each of you is experiencing some time for rest and preparing for your son’s return later next week.

Camp Director

Today’s Bible story is…
Story: Jesus in the Desert
Scripture: Mark 3:13 – 4:1-11

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