What is that? Oooh, that’s a dumpster overflowing with garbage. Is it? Or is it what we like to call evidence of ministry?
To most people this might be a disgusting sight, but to us at Rock Mountain Bible Camp this is evidence of ministry that a successful retreat or camp took place. When I see this at the end of a week of camp or weekend retreat I think "Wow, our guests must have had a great time". Usually lots of garbage means there were lots of games and activities that young men and women participated in. This is what a typical dumpster looks like after the staff at Rock Mountain has cleaned up.
At the end of every retreat or camp we (the staff) clean up. This includes every cabin, every bunk, the gym, the game room, basically every nook and cranny of space at camp is cleaned. For me, as I clean up after every group, whether it is folding and stacking chairs, vacuuming or taking the trash to the dumpster, I often pray for the people who left this evidence; I pray that, unlike the trash, they do not leave what they learned through the Word of God behind.
So far this summer we have had 28 different guest groups,1,925 people, at Rock Mountain. That is a lot of people throwing things away, but more importantly, that is a lot of people hearing about Jesus and what He has done for them. One of the great things I get to do is sit down with the Youth Pastor’s and leaders at the end of their summer camps and retreats and hear about great things God has done. Every time (and I am not exaggerating) they report someone from the group has responded to the Gospel. They were introduced for the first time to Jesus or they were convicted about their sin and made the commitment to seek His will for their lives. Either way, having places like camp to get away for a week or weekend has a tremendous impact on people.
So whether you see the dumpster as disgusting or you praise the Lord for what He has done at camp will you please join me in prayer for those who came to camp and left behind the garbage; that they will not leave behind what they learned from the Word of God. Pray those lives are changed for good and for those changed lives to impact others.