United Methodist Family Camp

Camp Poem

Family Camp, 2015

Written by Judy Karnes

The hills come alive with the sound of voices –
Our hearts beat faster and our mind rejoices!
God’s spirit moves through quaking leaves,
Lush green, lit by sunlight, a gentle breeze.
In this sacred place, away from outside distraction
We are filled with courage and need to take action.
Ps.27: 14 – God’s words of wisdom and courage, too,
Help us do as God would want us to.
Wait for the Lord – Be strong and smart –
Be sensitive to other’s needs – Open up your heart!
We’re back in our happy place, full of anticipation –
Looking forward to this week with great elation!
Raise your voice – sing with your heart –
And experience God’s kingdom, right from the start.

Our “Talking Guy” leads us each day
As we sing and laugh, rejoice and pray.
We hear about the changes coming soon –
Camp is upgrading – and will be different next June.
Silver Dome vanished – Is now a “Beige Bubble”!
Dining Hall is moving – and it will double!
New buildings – new places to park –
But camp continues, warmed by a Holy spark!

Courage – it takes a lot to do what is right
To live and do and be strong in God’s sight.
We studied people who faced overwhelming odds,
Yet overcame with courage and strength that was God’s.
Shiphrah and Puah, who lived in Moses’ time,
Showed love, compassion and courage divine.
They refused to follow orders and were sensitive to God,
And the people grew – as through the land they trod.
God draws with crooked lines, and sometimes we resist,
But God doesn’t give up, creates in silence and persists.
Peter followed Jesus and took a little walk,
Jesus told him to come, so watching like a hawk,
Stepped out of the boat – and did just great –
Until he looked away, and floundered in the wake.
It takes courage to take a risk, it’s true,
Jesus calms the storm, gives a hand to me and you.
Whatever is a bully in your life – be brave –
Stand tall, have courage, Jesus’ love will save!
Stephen stood up for his faith against a great odd.
He defied the powers, dying, stoned into the sod.
Saul, later called Paul, watched with great awe,
Was changed and became the greatest apostle the world saw.
He spread God’s word across the land –
Writing and traveling, taking a stand.
Peter, the Rock, denied his leader and friend –
But Jesus pursued him to the end.
“Do you love me?” “You know I do.”
Again and again – and answered, “Yes, I do!”
“Feed my sheep” You are forgiven with love.
We get courage and wisdom from above.
Esther, a Jewish maiden, who became Queen,
Through great courage before the King,
Saved her people, by and by,
Encouraged by her father, Mordecai:
“Who knows? Perhaps you have come here
For such as this, my dear.”
She used her gifts – and defied the bad,
Strengthened by faith – and listened to Dad.
Kayla Mueller, acted courageously in her life,
Traveling across the world, easing suffering and strife.
Volunteering in remote places, caring for the least,
Captured and imprisoned, killed by the ISIS beast.
Her courage was astounding, even to the last,
She knew that God’s loving arms held her fast!
Do we have enough courage to act?
Don’t listen to lies that attack!
Stand up, shoulders back, eyes bright –
You are God’s beloved child, precious in God’s sight.
If nothing else, this week has shown,
That we are never really alone!
Take courage, take a risk, be brave and dare,
With the gifts you are given, it’s time to share!

Our evening campfires are such a joy!
We watch and clap with each girl and boy.
Younger children told jokes, acted out “Little Rabbit Foo Foo”
And did a Tootie–Tah, a Tootie–Tah, a Tootie–Tah too!
Older children’s night was deep and wide – and divine –
Inward, Outward, Upward, Downward, Happy all the time!
Home on the Range – and the Wedding Banquet too –
Good acting and being thankful – the time really flew!
Younger Youth – fast–paced and clever skits,
Singing, dancing, running, Super Hero funny bits.
Fashion show Dads and Fortune Smeller –
News report on squeegee and drone – and an undercover feller!
They let their little lights shine in the dark –
Shared their thanks – lit by God’s spark!
Older Youth rounded out the week really well –
The “Camp Director’s” building program sounded really swell!
Keeping up with the Kampers – that’s with a K.
Kept us updated on what’s “Important” today.
Running jokes, lots of games and skits,
Even Church Approved Dance Moves to keep us fit.
The light show at the end was inspired –
HOPE ON – God’s love is free, nothing required.

There’s something that happens here
And repeats every year –
Kids take care of others,
Friends and cousins, sisters, brothers.
They watch out and share and play –
The world could learn that this is the way!

The Holy Spirit rocks our days –
Beautiful music, full of inspiration and praise.
Lines from some special songs are so true –
“Oh Lord, in your time, let us find our way to you.”
“When God calls you, you’ve got to move,
“Feel God’s love, be in the groove.
“Grant me wisdom, grant me courage, to do
…. what you would have me do for you.”
“Family Camp, oh Family Camp, that’s where I want to be,
I’m free to rest and free to play and always free to be me.”
“Pharaoh, Pharaoh, Oh, baby, let my people go! Huh!”
“God is so good, God is so good, God is so good to me! A–huh!”
Music helps many people in many ways.
It comes into our hearts and stays.
Some is soothing, some inspires
Some is rousing – filling desires.
We express ourselves in ways untold –
Giving voice to young and old,
Camp band, Symphonic band, Drums,
Guitars and keyboard – Music hums.
Voices raised all during the day –
Improve your singing along the way.
Psalm 100:1 –“Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!”
God hears our voices, and receives every chord.
John Wesley tells us to sing out strong –
Fill your life with joyful song!

There’s no excuse not to move – opportunity galore –
Line Dancing, Let’s Dance, Ujam, Tai Chi, on the floor.
Swimming lessons – aerobics and laps,
Splashes and music and noodle slaps!
Hiking trails, water slide, zip line across the sky –
Giant swing lets go and away you fly!

Arts and Crafts are both old and new –
There’s lots of things for you to do.
Tie–dye as an always – colorful thing –
Survival bracelets are this year’s bling!
Water rockets brought a good crew –
Adults and children created with bottles and glue.
The rockets were colorful and quite artistic –
Some flew with great ease, other need some logistics!

Traditional games of Capture the Flag –
And Mission Impossible – never drag.
Name That Tune for young and older –
Simple to start and then get bolder.
Thinking faces, grimaces and frowns –
A–ha moments – the pianist astounds!
Young or older – it’s always a treat –
The audience wins – and taps their feet!

The Talent Show and Siam were crazy and fun –
Many songs and piano tunes were done.
Funny skits, lots of jokes –
There are so many creative folks!
A new name conjured up for the new hall –
Giant Beige Canvas Garlic Con–dome says it all!
The raffle this year for a beautiful quilt
Raised some funds and our bank account built!
The Star of Bethlehem, a gorgeous design –
Will be cherished – it’s truly divine.

The last night is special in so many ways –
Our last time together after our busy days.
We gather in quiet, reflective prayer –
Baptisms and Communion to share.
Then we form a circle of love,
Raise our voices in the darkness above,
Holding tight, swaying, saying goodbye,
A time of communion under the starry sky.

The morning to come is pack up time,
Hustle and bustle, get towels off the line.
Morning meeting and camp is done –
We leave once more in a day full of sun.
We’ve had a full week of God’s grace –
Shared stories, kept busy at a leisurely pace.
The week always passes so quickly it’s true –
You fill up with God’s spirit and love for you.
Take what you learned and keep it in your heart–
Courage to stand up and do your part.
There’s so much in the world that you can fix –
Come back next year in two–zero–one–six!