The phrase “lean in” is something the Birch campers hear on day one of their camp experience.
It is a phrase I say to them when I go into their cabins to introduce myself and welcome them to Rockmont and the best tribe (Birch) and camp (Bear)!
Lean in is a phrase I learned in 2018 here at camp, in a staff training led by Dan Davis.
It was a part of the acronym S.L.A.N.T. (Sit Up, Lean In, Ask Questions, Nod, and Track With Your Eyes). Dan used to call the staff to something greater than just sitting in a large room and listening to someone talk.
He invited us to participate in the training, rather than simply sitting listening to someone talk and perhaps not gaining anything from it. Ever since I heard this phrase, I have used it. I used it in the cabin as a counselor, I used it in the classroom as a teacher, and I currently use it as a tribal director.
On Sundays we have council.
Council is a time that is sacred and done by each camp (Bear, Deer, Mountain). It’s a time for counselors to offer blessings to the campers and to say “I have seen this in you this past week, keep up the good work, and I would like to see you move towards…”
There is singing, a fire, passing of the peace, and devotion. During Sunday night’s council (the start of our second week of camp), Daniel Weatherby led a devotion about Nehemiah.
He was getting to the climax of the story so he said, “you won’t want to miss this, so lean in.” And immediately half the room sat up, and leaned into the story.
It was a powerful moment for me, and I am sure for Daniel, to see and feel the atmosphere shift in the room.
The next time you are in an office meeting, at church, in a small group, and even at the dinner table- invite them into something greater with the phrase, lean in, so they don’t miss out on what is being offered.
Birch Tribal Director