The camp was called SummerTree and the organization was Sishya. It’s a Christian camp for students south of Chennai in India, in other words, very south in India. There were college and high school students there. About 450 of them. I couldn’t believe how many students were there. And each one desired to hear from God that week. I was truly honored to be a part of it.
I must admit at first I noticed all the details that were different from our camps. The long transitions. The amount of solo/performance songs. The types of skits. What people wore. But after a time I started to realize that these people were truly waiting to hear from the Lord. And I have found that when people wait on Him, He shows up. Maybe not in the way we expect, but He is faithful. I never saw a big emotional response, but I heard stories one on one and in the group about what God was doing in lives.
I taught two sessions on worship, about how God is worthy of honor in every area of our lives in every moment of our lives. And the music we listen to and the music we make is merely a part of that. They really soaked it in and had great questions. When dealing with the issue of whether or not you can listen to secular music, we spent a great deal of time talking about what is really our goal in life. If it is to be with Christ, to be like Christ, then we don’t really need to spend a whole lot of time figuring out just how far we can get away from him. We need to pursue Him and love Him. Whatever music helps you do that, listen. Whatever doesn’t, don’t. Then we started applying it to other areas of our lives as well.
I also taught two sessions on recovering from sins in our lives. We talked about humility (understanding who we are in relation to who He is), submission (putting Him in charge because of who He is), confession (surrounding ourselves with strength because of who we are), and continuation (wash, rinse and repeat, meaning you’re never done healing, God always has farther to take you). And we spend a lot of time on hope. We have a loving God and He completely understands us. So it’s okay to be where you are and to take that first step. Again they asked some great questions.
But I must admit, I probably learned more than I taught. One of the speakers was amazing. His name is Sunder Krishnan. He was born in India but is currently a pastor in Toronto. I took more notes than I’ve taken since we were with Dr. Robert Smith two years ago. And anyone who has heard me rave about that camp knows that is a compliment that means something.
I’ll finish up next with a bit about the end of our trip and some of what I learned.