Friday July 25th
I find it hard to believe that today was the last day - even though I have worked at many camps and I knew that the time would fly by! This camp was like no other experience for me. On a daily basis we didn't know how many kids would come, or if there would be electricity to run the fans and lights. We didn't know which CEF workers would join us, or what the day would bring. What I did know was that God would be faithful to supply all our needs and I can honestly say that I did not worry about the details. Today was a perfect example of that. As I mentioned the power has been less than reliable. With no fans running , limited airflow and no lights it has been very arduous to keep the attention of the children through no fault of their own! I found it hard to sit still in the dim light and 35 + degree heat. On Wednesday night we prayed that God would give us power for the morning and sure enough, the power stayed on for the morning - only! I thought to myself why didn't I ask specifically for the whole day?!!
So we prayed last night for God to give us power for Friday until we had to leave! As a special treat on our Last Day Celebration CEF brought a puppet display with sound and lights (I think you know where this is going!). It was more important for us to have power on the last day as we wanted it to be a great party. Our plan was to decorate the room with balloons and streamers before the children arrived, and then we would make the craft - paper crowns- that went along with our theme of Kingdom Kids Day Camp. CEF would preform their puppet show and then we would serve cake, say our goodbyes, and give them a lunch and a backpack filled with a t-shirt, a teddy bear, a pen and pencil and a notebook! This day had so much packed into it, and it depended in part on the power! When we entered the building the moment of anticipation ended when Joseph and Ratanak attempted to switch on the power - NO ELECTRICITY!
I called a couple of people to pray and we cried out to God who has all power to come and give us some! We had to begin and could not wait any longer so the children excitedly entered the room. There were so many of them! I was stationed in a corner to make crowns with them and the circle kept growing and growing and growing! In the end I had 40 + children circled around me all wanting me to staple their crown to fit their head and wanting more stickers to put on it! All the leaders were overwhelmed with the sheer numbers and what we would do under the circumstances.
Not 10 minutes into their arrival and the lights came on and the fans started to whirl! The room erupted with praise but I think my praise to God was the loudest! Why was I so amazed that God came through? He has shown me His faithfulness time and time again. What a great God we serve!
I am amazed that the entire day went seamlessly. There were so many details to attend to, but in the end all that needed to be done occurred. The room looked festive, we had enough food, we had electricity (praise God!), we had enough presents for all the children, and they knew that we came in Jesus' Name.
There is one more thing I would like to share with you. It was a gift to me from God. There is one boy that captured my heart. He is a ragtag vivacious, outspoken, somewhat ADHD kid that serenaded us on our lunch sometimes to our displeasure! He would sit on top of a ledge as we tried to rest in the heat of the day and would belt out this Khmer song about a girl that left a boy!!!! Oh my! I won't soon forget his voice! This boy only came to camp in the afternoons and while I don't know what he does in the mornings, he usually showed up around noon. I started looking for him today because I wanted to give him the present but there was no sign of him. I even put one aside for him but in the end it was needed to give to another deserving young girl. As we were cleaning up Cathy found a backpack that had fallen aside so I grabbed it and said this must be for him!!!! Still, he did not come and we were almost ready to leave. There was some food left over so Lisa and I decided to walk around Svay Pak to distribute the food to people in need. As we walked down a side street Lisa called out and said, " here he is!!!" I screamed his name which was slightly inappropriate but I couldn't contain my enthusiasm and joy in seeing him! He seemed to know that I had something for him and he left what he was doing and followed me back to Rahab's House. We talked the whole way back and I couldn't understand his Vietnamese, and he couldn't understand my English but somehow our hearts were speaking. It was so amazing to give him this little token of our love and I am thankful to God for not letting him be left out. My prayer is that he will one day sit on the rooftops and sing praises to the most High God who he knows as His personal Saviour. I pray that he will be saved from the "normal" of Svay Pak and be transformed into the wonderful young man God has made him to be. I am not naive to think that this will be an easy thing given all that we have seen and experienced, but if my God will come down and turn on the lights I believe that He will come down and make a way for this one.