My parents had a dream as well. Someday they said, they wanted to move up into the mountains and work at camp. But it never seemed to work out… until the call came.
The problem, nothing had changed to make it work out. Call from God or no call, moving to camp just didn’t make sense. They had a house that hadn’t sold. They were pastoring a church with a brand new building and no replacement pastor. My dad had built a playhouse that we couldn’t move with us and we had a Shetland pony and no horse trailer. But most daunting of all, there was no housing for them at the camp and no guaranteed income.
So what did they do? Left the playhouse, shoved the pony into the back of a pickup truck, and moved to camp into my grandparent’s house. Half of the week we stayed in their old home in Lake Chelan, an 80 minute drive from the camp, and the other half of the week our family of four lived in a single bedroom of my grandparent’s home at the camp.
And then my Dad started the summer camp program and all of the Camas run camps. We eventually build a house of our own and even got to live in it for 2 and ½ years before he died. Sometimes I can’t believe it was only six years. Dad worked his heart out at camp for six years and finally that very last summer he had enough camp counselors to go around and a fairly solid program. He didn’t have to be the director, program director, and speaker all at once and things were looking good. Then he died in an accident and we realized that those six years were his last.
I’ve thought about what Dad would have done if he knew he only had six years to live and love and serve here on earth. And you know what? He would have done exactly the same thing that he actually did. He would have left everything behind and lived his dream and changed camp forever. Camas Meadows went from being solely a rental facility to somewhere that created affordable summer camps for children all across the state. Dad started training his own summer staff, planning his own summer program, and changing the lives of children in our own community. He did not leave the nitty gritty of ministry in the hands of the churches who rented our lodge. He wanted to do it himself, and he made it possible for Camas Meadows to continue to do just that to this very day.
He listened to the call. Ignored all the crazy, and plunged ahead just as though what we were doing was sane.
It is amazing what God can do with just a handful of loony people and a dream.
2 Corinthians 4:7—“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”