Thousands of young people and families have been dynamically affected by camping experiences throughout the past 100 years. A Christian camping experience has the potential of changing lives, and the influence of the camp staff is what enables this to happen.
A Kimball staff member is a part of a Christian community, sharing the love of Christ with all who come. Taking spiritual leadership is extremely important. The following list are the goals for campers that each staff person is challenged to achieve:
1. Each camper should come to realize that they can pray and talk to God at any time. Group silent prayer with a staff person leading out loud will be a common occurrence during cabin devotions. Hopefully, campers will become comfortable with praying out loud, but this will not be forced in any way. Many campers realize the joy and satisfaction of prayer for the first time while at camp.
2. Each camper will understand that the Bible is a true and valuable guide to daily living. Through the use of scriptures in chapels, vespers, and devotions, campers will learn that stories and verses from the Bible can be directly applied to their personal lives.
3. Each camper will be challenged to grow in such Christian character qualities as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, and self control. As a Christian camp community, these qualities must be role modeled by staff.
4. Each camper should understand that God has created the world and given us the responsibility to take care of it. Living in the outdoors for a week creates a perfect opportunity to help children grow in their appreciation, wonder, and love for the beautiful world we live in. As they watch our sincere appreciation for the natural world they begin to realize more fully the greatness of our God who has so amazingly created all things.
5. Each camper will understand more fully that their body is special and was created to be the temple of the Holy Spirit. Proper health habits, taught and shared by example, will help children grow in respect for their bodies.
6. The simple message of the gospel, that Jesus Christ came to earth to die for us, taking the punishment for our sins so that eternal life can be had by all who believe in Him, will be shared with each camper.
Kimball Camp YMCA has the unique opportunity to receive children from every religious background, race, income level, and nationality. It is our desire as a staff to share God’s love in a non-threatening manner. We, as a staff, are able to paint a picture, hopefully, of what Christianity is about. In most cases, the decisions and choices children make in response to their camping experiences will not be seen or known for several years. Our job is to carefully, and prayerfully, plant seeds and then leave the rest to God.