Camp Amigo, 2015
“ Make A Joyful Noise… Psalm 100:1-2”
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
And Wow, did we ever! Camp Amigo 2015 was a HUGE success! On June 1st through June 3rd our community members joyously journeyed to Amigo Centre in beautiful Sturgis Michigan. Each year we are eager with anticipation of good times, laughter, crafting, boating, archery, fishing, fellowship, devotions and worship, awesome food, and just plain old FUN! We are truly blessed to be invited back each year!
Amigo Staff introduced us to Shrinky Dinks. That was a HUGE success! I must make mention of everyone’s favorite part, of course involving food, Popcorn cooked over a campfire complete with Amigo Staff songs. Such an incredibly dedicated, wonderful staff they are!
Arthur and Bill sang beautifully and the talent abounded…and I mean abounded! Sammy sang and plucked his Ukulele, Emily and Heather danced, staff serenaded the audience, we even have a stand-up comedienne! What talent MDC Goldenrod and our community members possess!
Campers made their own instruments out of recycled household items and crafting supplies. They made tambourines, shakers, rain-sticks, microphones, guitars and drums. Kris takes the cake when it came to crafting his guitar out of paper plates, paint sticks pipe cleaners and string. The creativity and artsy skills that our members embody is both incredible and humbling! What joyful sounds ensued! I felt truly blessed to have experienced such a time.
I had been gifted a moment to sneak away and rest. The trails in the woods are captivating, so I wandered off. I chose where I would rest. I set my Bible down in the stones at the start of the pier and practically galloped to the edge. I kicked off my sandals and dipped my feet into the ice cold lake. I shrieked in delight, and chill. I felt such an overwhelming urge to cry out in praise and thanksgiving to God for all the He allowed me to witness at Camp Amigo. My head swam with praises and shouts of joy until God admonished me and said “Stop. Hush. Listen.” I stopped. I paused and breathed. In the distance, I heard faint laughter, what a joyful noise. I heard friends encouraging one another on a stroll through the woods, a joyful sound. Songs of praise wafted in the air, beautiful. I heard God speak in singing birds, wind dancing through the leaves, and crashing waves on the side of the pier. Oh, how joyful it was to my ear. I turned around to head back to our group when I saw my Bible at the start of my path. “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Oh, I must share this moment! God said again, “Hush.” Peace enveloped me and I remembered a familiar song from my youth: I love you, Lord. And I lift my voice, to worship You, oh, my soul rejoice. Take joy, my King, in what You hear. May it be a sweet, sweet song in Your ear. This was my joyful noise to my Lord. When I returned to the group, completely renewed, I was privileged to share this and we sang together. What a quiet and beautiful moment!
Each year we set aside this time to experience what God has for us in nature and in our relationships with friends. But, it became very obvious to me that in every day life, we need to stop, listen, and respond to what joy we have surrounding us. What do you experience? Kids giggling? Dogs barking? Birds singing? Babies cooing? Friends chatting over coffee? Music? Crickets? Frogs? A lonesome train whistle? Take the time to stop and absorb God’s favor upon us and then return joyful praise to Him for the abundance of joy He gives.