My relationship with Jesus had always been an assumed relationship. For most of my life, I assumed I had a relationship with God and didn't think I would have to tell him I wanted Him. However, this past week at Carolina Point, I learned that to truly have a relationship with Him, you have to let Him in. On June 8th, I said, "Jesus I WANT you." That moment was so pure and emotional for me, that immediately after, I began to cry. Tears flooded my eyes and when I calmed down a little, I felt more at peace than I've ever felt in my entire life.
The rest of the week was incredibly emotional because I did not want to leave. I didn't want to leave a beautiful place full of beautiful and genuine people. I didn't always feel like this, though. The days leading up to the trip, I began to feel very nervous and doubtful. My leader wasn't going because she is joining YoungLife Staff. She believed that it would have been very selfish to have gone, created an even stronger bond with some of the girls, and then eventually have to leave us in September. Don't get me wrong, I completely understood and I'm super happy for her, but I couldn't help but be sad and angry at the situation. I was so frustrated that my go-to person wasn't going and that I wouldn't get to experience a lot of the camp stuff with her. As the week went on, I grew closer to the leaders that did go and felt better about everything.
It wasn't until we got to North Carolina that my worries and doubt started drifting away. We'd been on the road for a couple of hours and I was getting antsy, but we stopped at Sliding Rock. If you don't know what that is, it's basically just what it sounds like. It's a waterfall that has rocks you can slide down into a pool of water. I personally didn't slide down because it was very rainy and very cold, but it was so much fun watching other people do it! It started our day off very nicely, and I had a chance to talk to some of the younger girls that were going on the trip as well.
As soon as we arrived at Carolina Point, any doubt that had been running through my brain, was completely gone. The friends I made, the hilarious skits we saw, the endless screaming of songs (which made me lose my voice), and the relationship I started with the Lord that week made everything worth it. On Saturday, I bawled like a baby because I didn't want to leave such an incredible and life changing place. But, someone very wise said to me,"For this place to be so special or make a real difference on you, we have to leave and bring what we learned back with us." And it was incredibly hard, but I'm back home and I couldn't be anymore thankful for the extreme persistence my leaders exhibited trying to get us all to camp.
If you have the chance to go to a YoungLife camp, run toward the opportunity. I guarantee, it'll be the best week of your life.