Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Lessons Learnt From Camp

James 4: 1 - 3 (NIV)
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

After going to so many camps as a participant, this is actually the first time I've gone to one as a helper. From experience, I find camps to be extremely tiring and draining because of the various activities, workshops and finding time just to fellowship with friends and speakers.

However, this time round, I decided to go with zero expectations. My goals were just to serve, try to do what is expected of me without complaining, and not to be stressed out trying to achieving a list of idealistic side goals. And strangely enough, I felt very refreshed and relaxed after this camp.

Don't get me wrong. The food is nothing to shout about. The facilities are NS(national service) camp stuff. There was a mattress next to my bed, scrawled with a gross graffitti of a naked guy. Ewww... lol, no way was I sleeping on that. In the words of DuZhai, you'll feel molested just sleeping on it. Yup, my pal DuZhai was there as a participant.

The toilets were pretty cramped and we had a communal bathing facilities and limited shower cubicles. OK, let me explain, the communal bathing facilities was this two huge pools in the centre of the bathroom where you scoop water and bath. Of course, decent folk would wear 'sarongs' while bathing. (*Wikipedia defines a sarong as a large sheet of fabric, often wrapped around the waist and worn as a skirt by men and women in southeast Asia and Pacific islands, particularly Indonesia and Malaysia.) I opted for the cramped shower cubicles. LOL, the walls were quite fungus-y, though. Eww.. avoiding touching the walls was a skill in itself.

Worship. Nowadays, the more modern churches had full bands complete with drum sets, electric guitars, bass guitars and keyboards. This one was no different. The more contemporary Christian music nowadays were loud like in a rock or pop concert. I couldn't really focus on worship. It was too loud for my senses. Anyway, I was also tired after the days activities.

Having said all that, I didn't really let myself be bothered about the above stuff although it sounds like I was pretty aware of the various shortcomings. Hey, I said I set zero expectations, I didn't say I made myself blind and deaf as well.

I did have some good times, reuniting with old friends and making new ones. You can learn a lot from people if you are open. There were some people who earned a newfound respect from me.

I don't really have any major positive or negative vibes about this camp. The one big plus point I would say is that I seem to have gained a newfound sense of peace to deal with people and stuff. Guess that should be a good thing, right?


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Las montañas said...

Glad you come back refreshed.

Loud music is not for me. thank you. I prefer very traditional forms of worship. A pipe organ in the church would be the best!

poohbearee said...

You were counsellor in the camp?
The last time I stepped into a camp was many years back. Feel so old now. heee..

Hmmm...bands and loud worship. I grew up with them. It is PRAISE and WORSHIP. One is loud and the other quiet.

poohbearee said...

I mean loud PRAISE and quiet WORSHIP.

just me said...

You must have made an impact or lasting influence on some participants, well done!

Jonzz said...

lm: i'm not really familiar with pipe organs but i like acoustic style worship with lots of string and wind instruments. Ahhhhh....

poohbearee: nope i'm not a counsellor. just a helper. help out in all sorts of things. serving food included. ha ha ha

just me: don't know about that, he he. =P

Annie said...

I don't go to church. I'd sit there and feel like everybody is staring at me... as if I've walked into the Stepford Neighborhood of perfect people.

Been to Catholic mass a few... Church of Latter Day Saints a few times (Mormon)... Christian churches.... Catholic weddings (hello..long).. and Catholic funerals.. (even longer)...

I think I just don't like singing; maybe that's it. I like motivational lectures though if I ever find a church that does that.. but see I'm not a morning person either and I couldn't get up early enough to attend church.

I'm glad you had a good time Jonzz. We like hearing about your mini-adventures. I still keep picturing all those cult movies about camp where the nerdy kids are stuck in the bathrooms or there's a food fight.