When my husband and I first interviewed for jobs at Sacramento, we did an exercise in getting to know one another on a deeper level. We had a stack of about 100 cards with different qualities and values on them that we had to sort through. First you narrowed it down to twenty cards just going on visceral reactions, then ten, then five, then finally just three cards. My top picks were “love”, “people”, and “truth”. We played this game with Bill and Cindy as well as Aaron Scarborough. What I thought was interesting about this exercise was that all three of them had “legacy” in their top three card picks. I, freshly married and no children at the time, could not wrap my mind around why Legacy would be so important to all of them, especially when I had definitely chosen the best cards. I wrongly thought legacy was about self rather than (as I now know) about being beyond yourself.
In my five years here I have had the opportunity to get to know Bill by working for and with him and his wife Cindy. I have shared meals, jokes, happy and sad news, hard days, long days, and fun days. I sat in his office while interviewing at Sacramento as he explained his vision for camp, just plans at that point, and now I can look around and see the fruition of those dreams and prayers he had in his heart. I look around camp in our 90th year and think about how much this place has changed and grown. I think about how when Bill was just a young kid, this place was his stomping ground and he felt the call of God to ministry here at Sacramento. I think about the full circle legacy, and how just a seed was planted, and God, in his goodness, grew little into much.
You see, there is something else you should know about Bill. He is a baby whisperer. There has not been a baby to my knowledge that hasn’t absolutely been enamored by him. On a personal level, the picture above, Bill with my son Silas, is an answer to prayer. My husband and I hoped and prayed for a baby. Bill and Cindy knew our hearts prayer, and through all 3 losses, prayed and mourned with us, and then rejoiced with us in the birth of healthy son. In this way I have come to understand legacy, not through buildings, or numbers, accomplishments or accolades, but through people. Just ask his three children, his seven grandchildren, his staff, his board, or any of the guests he has shown “radical hospitality”. The legacy he leaves here is one in which people have come to know God. Thank you Bill for a legacy of more than just buildings, but one of people.