This past summer I spent the majority of the summer working as a camp counselor at a very popular Christian camp. I must say it was one of the best experiences of my life to date. If youth are your passion, I really encourage you to work at least one summer as a camp counselor.
It was amazing that I was there to help the campers grow and develop but the experienced helped many in more ways than I imagined. I expected to grow spiritually and I expected to become more mature. I mean I was basically acting as mom for campers for one or two weeks. *Hello to all my children reading this lol* But what made me grow the most was being uncomfortable.
I have never, every been camping or anything like it. Never stayed in a cabin. Never been told if I have to poop to “use that porta-potty over there”. Never. LOL. That porta-potty thing was only one time. They have actual bathhouses. Lol.
Being that it was a Christian camp, they set time aside for counselors to get their own quiet time and encouraged us on our breaks to spend time with God. But, it was in the times where I felt uncomfortable, where the Lord really spoke to me and where I felt closest to him. Those times where I totally didn’t expect to have a “God moment” where the Lord spoke softly to me. Those times where I simply watching my campers zip line where the Lord answered my prayers. Or the times when I was silently crying as I walked behind my campers because if I had to walk up the hill one more time I felt like I was going to die, where the Lord humbled me.
For a moment over the summer I was upset thinking, “God why would you allow me to come here?”. LOL. I was upset with Him but I was the one that sought out this position. I was upset with Him but I was the one that prayed that he would bless me with the opportunity. I wanted to stretch my faith and I got upset when it got uncomfortable. Isn’t that what stretching is about? Going beyond a comfortable state of capacity.
Sometimes we get into a routine or a schedule where we expect to hear from the Lord and we expect him to speak to us the way we want him to speak to us. But it’s in those times where we feel completely uncomfortable that our hearts genuinely long for him. It’s in those times where we don’t expect him to show up that he sits right next to us and speaks to us. You want to stretch your faith, get in an uncomfortable place.
You may be familiar with the scripture in Matthew 17 where Jesus tells us all we need is faith the size of a mustard seed. I knew this verse and I’ve always know all I need is faith the size of a mustard seed. But over the summer as I read that scripture I thought about it. All I need is faith the size of a mustard seed but that doesn’t mean I can’t stretch in that and grow my faith even bigger! STRETCH!
“At the bottom of the mountain, they were met by a crowd of waiting people. As they approached, a man came out of the crowd and fell to his knees begging, “Master, have mercy on my son. He goes out of his mind and suffers terribly, falling into seizures. Frequently he is pitched into the fire, other times into the river. I brought him to your disciples, but they could do nothing for him.”
Jesus said, “What a generation! No sense of God! No focus to your lives! How many times do I have to go over these things? How much longer do I have to put up with this? Bring the boy here.” He ordered the afflicting demon out—and it was out, gone. From that moment on the boy was well.
When the disciples had Jesus off to themselves, they asked, “Why couldn’t we throw it out?” “Because you’re not yet taking God seriously,” said Jesus. “The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle.””
Matthew 17:14-20 MSG
If you are in a place where you feel like you need to get closer to God, get to an uncomfortable place. Do something completely outside of your comfort zone. It may not feel good at first, but boy does it feel good in the end. Go ahead and stretch your faith!