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Amazed

Let’s start off by saying this: GOD IS GREAT! GOD IS GREAT! GOD IS GREAT!

I have so much to write about and I don’t know where to start. Maybe I will go for 3000 words again, this time with more focus behind them. So let us start from the beginning and go to now… Sound good?

I got off to a rough start. My ride to church was late, and I was not sure I would make it on time to catch the bus to camp. I started to get worried, so I loaded my car and got it all ready so that we could just take my car when she got there. Well, I let it go until the time I was supposed to leave, and then I left. I left a message for my family saying that I had left due to time and that I hoped they all had a good weekend. As I found out upon my return from camp, my mom has miss-marked the date. It did however turn out fine. My mom and dad kindly got my car from the church parking lot so that it was not sitting there. They also made sure I got home safely after the trip. I owe my parents a lot. I love my parents and my family. I really wish my sister would have come.

The bus ride up was one of the most comfortable 3 hour bus rides I had ever had. The seats were comfortable. There were TVs so that we could watch moves. And the bus wasn’t at all crowded so we each got to sit by ourselves if we wanted to. Nikki brought some wonderful tasting pretzels. Kelly, Frost, and I went and got liquid at a stop we made in what we think was St. Cloud. We watched October Sky, a movie which, although it doesn’t contain much action, I quite enjoy. We also shared in some fellowship with our friends. Let me take a minute to name everyone here that was on this trip with me. Our two bus drivers *I apologize for a loss of names or bad spelling*, Derek, Kurk, Ryan, Kathy, her daughter, Christy’s mom *man, I am having a hard time with female adult leaders…*, Trotter, Frost, Kelly, Nikki, Kristy, Jeremy, Anthony, Erik, Kelly, Daniel, Tommy, Matt, Pudge, Julie, Josh? *hopes that’s right*, Ben, and I think at least 2 other people whose faces are in my head but whose names are slipping my mind. *sorry*. Let us continue now with wherever I was going.

This awesome group unloaded the bus at Camp Shamineau and we all went to our room to unpack. We then went to a welcome session where this AMAZING band played for us while we sang. Those people knew how to worship. I could go on for pages about how the base player could get into the music, or the 2nd guitarist could put some juice on a note. They were truly truly outstanding. We were also greeted by a bright flashlight fellow. Although at times it seemed like his wit might be a little dim, he provided us with a charged battery of jokes and puns. We did this until small groups and then to bed with us.

I should probably mention that this was a retreat focused on letting your light shine. It was based on Matthew 5:14. Although this is a very powerful verse and has started to guide me in spreading the good word, I think the bigger verse that has somehow managed to leave my side is the one on what love really is. We should always remember that Love is always patient and kind; it is never jealous. Love is never boastful or conceited…It is never rude or selfish It does not take offense, and it is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people’s sins but delights in truth. It is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes ~1 Corinthians 13:4-8. That hit me. To realize that god will always forgive us, always trust us. He will never leave our side. His love is truly a perfect love. Our speaker, Greg Speck, lead us in worship with 4 very powerful messages. I suggest you check out that site if you want to know more about him.

After all of our worship, we spent time with each other getting to know one another. I think somewhere down the road I may have a new DDR buddy if Anthony takes me up on that game of DDR. Tommy I haven’t really talked with much since junior high so that was pretty cool. Out of all the people I spent time with this weekend, the most interesting person had to have been Erik. Erik can be tough to be around sometimes, and for some people, it is to hard. I found though with patience, some understanding, and the willingness to meet new people, that Erik is a really bright, really cool, Christian kid. I enjoyed my time spent with him, and I hope he enjoyed it as well.

For the 7 or 8 hours we weren’t sleeping or in worship, we were out having freetime. They had football tournaments *Woodbury many semi’s* and volleyball tournaments *Woodbury took first*. They also had floor hockey, which I played a good amount of. I also watched some people make candles during this time *pretty cool*. There was a high rope course, rifle shooting, archery, basketball, skateboarding, rollerblading, nature events, and even a pizza-cooking event. Overall, it was a blast, and maybe I will get some pictures up here if my camera actually works.

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