If you’re reading this in August of 2013, it means I am still catching up on sleep lost while at Camp Chenaniah in July. If you’re reading it at any time later than August, I’m still catching up on sleep. I’m just doing so for some other reason.
The main reason I lost so much sleep, besides the normal camp reasons, is that I was counseling in the senior high cabin. This meant, of course, that most of the campers were taller than me. If they were in any sport, they probably outweighed me as well. So, unlike my partner counselors who were 6-foot or taller, respect for my leadership would not be coming because of my imposing physique.
When I overheard some of the campers comment that they had not heard any rules about pranks from the director at the opening session, I knew I would need to sleep with one eye open all week. This was a good thing, because there was at least one camper that liked to sit and stare. I’m pretty sure he was plotting. What kept me awake was my lack of knowing what he was plotting…or who he was plotting against.
Lack of sleep leads to a lack of energy. Lack of energy would be a problem, since my camp duties kept me busy most of each day. Much to my delight, God wasn’t kidding when He said His strength is made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). It shouldn’t have been a surprise, but just when my head felt like dropping into the camp’s bowl of soup, I would find enough power to keep moving forward.
The pleasant surprises would carry me throughout the week.
· A little encouragement from a fellow worker.
· A teen nodding as if they might actually be processing what I was saying.
· A peanut butter cup sandwiched between two brownies.
But the biggest surprise came on the last night. Just when I was sure the cabin pranks would be landing, the camp director and the camp cook paid a visit to the senior boys. They assured them pranks would be met with consequences. I still slept with one eye open, but that’s one less eye than I was counting on.