One of my favorite parts about high school was going to a camp called Super Summer. Super Summer (or "SupSum" as I call it) is a Christian leadership camp for students from entering high school freshmen to graduated high school seniors. I have been going since I was fourteen. If you've ever heard me talk about it, you know that SupSum is my happy place, if a little weird at times. There are kids licking the Kugel, interluding until they lose their breath, and singing the National Anthem everywhere (iykyk). But for me, Super Summer is so much more than just psycho people being crazy about Jesus. I have made so many memories, met lifelong friends, and encountered God's amazing grace through my years as a camper, and I am so thankful for it.
This year was a bittersweet experience for me because of multiple reasons. One of my friends that I met through Super Summer died in a plane crash the week before. She was a friend to everyone, and we all had to deal with her absence. Also, it was my last year as a camper. All of my close friends are staying in Mississippi for college, so I won't be able to see them as easily as I could in high school. I was determined to make the most of my last five days and live every moment to the fullest. There were smiles, laughs, and quite a few tears throughout the week, but I would not trade it for anything in this world.
What does it mean to be fearless?
The theme for the week was "Fearless." As believers, we do not have to fear anything because we have the power of the living God always on our side. I have struggled with fear a lot lately. My life is a whirlwind of new experiences and changes. I'm about to move 600 miles away from my childhood home and start my college education. I am leaving everything behind to do what God has called me to do, and honestly, it's a little scary. However, God was able to speak to me through this week and show me that I have nothing to fear when I put my future in his hands.
I tried to be fearless on my own for so long. I would tell people that I was not afraid of my future or that growing up was not scary, but it felt like I was living a lie. Saying that I am fearless will never be enough. The only way to stay fearless is living in and through the Holy Spirit. I can't do it on my own, and I don't want to pretend like I can anymore.
"Now the Lord is the Spirt and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom."
-2 Corinthians 3:17, ESV
This verse has stuck with me ever since I got back. For me, it really drives home the message that I had been hearing all week. Hiding my worries for the future caused me to become a slave to my fear. It would eat away at me day after day. But by choosing to live in the Spirit, I can be free from my chains. I don't have to do it myself. None of us do because God has every single one of our lives in his extremely capable hands. How awesome is that?!?!?!
While Super Summer is meant for students to draw closer to God through learning more about Him, it is also a place full of growth. I have grown so much since my first day as a camper in 2015. I was the quiet girl with braces. I was shy and would hardly ever talk to anyone I didn't know. I would have never volunteered to pray because I was scared I would stutter or mess up.
I think back on my younger self and just want to thank God for the way that He was able to use Super Summer and the people I have met to grow me into the woman I am today. He has taught me that it is okay to be imperfect because He can use my imperfection for his glory. Also, God has placed so many genuine friends in my life through Super Summer. These people are one of a kind friends that I know will be with me for life. They have shown me that it's okay to be myself while also pushing me to go out of my comfort zone. The love I have experienced at Super Summer is unparalleled in depth, and I will cherish it forever.
While I can't be a camper anymore, Super Summer will always be a part of my life. Hopefully, I will be able to come back next summer and serve as a leader, but who knows what the future holds. Either way, I'm not scared anymore. I'm choosing to live in the Spirit and be free from that fear!