This summer, I sat with our photographer/ videographer during the last night of Ritmo, as she was putting on the final touches of the week’s video. She was trying to think of a fitting bible verse that would coincide with the week’s theme of new beginnings. I had a verse floating around in my head, but couldn’t quite pen where it was found. One thing that was not in short supply during youth camp: pastors. I sought out the nearest one and asked if he could remember where it was found. You see, the dining hall was full of youth, some grabbing late night coffee, some listening to an impromptu acoustic worship put on by Justin Gambino, but the strength of the wifi was not in our favor. The pastor could not remember where it was found either. We found a nearby Bible, but it had no concordance. The Pastor searched for the top three places he thought it was, but alas, he didn’t find it. So I took off to Skippers to find the verse through the power of google, and found it in the last place (literally) I would have looked for it; Revelations 21.
“Behold, I am making all things new.” – Revelations 21:5
This verse has continued to float around in my head as I look around camp facing a new season with some very big changes. It echoes as I am reminded that while change is hard, God brings about only good things, and always for his glory. As we have seen some much beloved staff leave, we have had our hearts thrilled to learn that God is in charge of every single move, here, there and everywhere, and brought to us, some very special people as well. And with the excitement of watching God work, we face transformation.
The context of the verse is quite beautiful, the chapter is about God transforming the earth into something new. The beauty of crystal, gold, jasper and gems forming a new heaven. And the beauty of God wiping away every tear, and death being put well, to death. It’s full circle. What was broken, he transforms into something complete, all hints of sickness, sorrow and pain, he takes away. The Alpha and Omega, God fulfills His every promise, and his children live in God’s glory forever.
Meanwhile, as we wait for that final day, we are here on this earth tasked with showing others the glory of God, through his grace and goodness, that we may all be transformed. It has been the goal since the beginning of Sacramento, to transform lives, and the only legacy that matters. And when I sat and talked with our Director Bill, he told me over and over, that will continue to be the goal, transforming lives. His main objective has always been being a good steward of this place, and all the resources he has been given to do so. Maintaining a level of excellence in service, programming, lodging and food, has all tied into stewardship of what God has given him, all so lives can be be transformed, all so God can be glorified.
And here is where new buildings fit into all of this. Having a larger space to hold more people means more life transformation, and more life transformation leads to more people coming into the kingdom of God. Having new buildings means spending less money in the long run on repairs of older buildings with holes in the floor, and decaying foundations, which instead can be used to make more efficient buildings. And that means money can be spent elsewhere, like new activities, on new employees, and other future expansions, because the wonderful news is that camp is growing. In the summer especially, our little lobby is busting at the seams. Our calendar gets stretched every year, and every year we think, if we just had a little more space to fit all these people.
So the adventure begins! Mission: Transformation is about to break ground here in the next few weeks, and we pray that God will continue to be glorified as we become stewards of even more, that we would be faithful in little and much. We ask that you would join with us in stewardship of this lovely place as once again, God makes things new.