The Nazarene youth camp was exactly what it says in the title... EPIC!! The camp consisted of about 70 youth and 30 volunteers of all different cultures. Some of the cultures represented came from the Pacific Islands, Australia, Asia, UK, and America. Our speaker was Kenny Wade, an American who currently lives in Australia and works at Nazarene Theological College. He delivered powerful messages throughout the week that challenged the youth to think about living a life that makes God famous so they could receive the Eternal Prize in Christ (EPIC).
Even though the camp only consisted of 2 half days and 2 full days, a lot of fun activities were able to be squeezed in during this short time period. Some of these included water skiing, tubing, swimming, kayaking, water fight, wharf jumping, giant water slide, and a photo scavenger hunt. Many of the youth are city kids who came up from Auckland and they don't get to experience being in the ocean too often. Many of them had first time experiences at this camp as well. Jenna had the privilege of water skiing in the ocean for her very time along with teaching youth how to as well.
The highlight of the camp for us was the very last day when Kenny delivered his last message and communion was offered. One young man stood up and confessed that he didn't know God before coming to camp and he thought camp was just going to be a bunch of fun activities without the mention of God. However, that day he decided to give his life to following Jesus! Many others chose to dedicate or re-dedicate their lives to Christ. Jenna was approached by 2 girls asking for prayer. She prayed with them and then listened as they each prayed for Jesus to come into their hearts and take control of their lives. Praise the Lord! Jesse also prayed with the youth and was able to better explain the meaning of communion to them.
When we returned home from camp we were thrilled to read some of the post on Facebook from the campers. The young man who stood up and gave his testimony was excited to share with the Facebook world his new found hope in Christ. Another one of the girls posted that her and some friends committed to reading at least one chapter of the bible a day and then they were going to share with each other what they had read. It is so exciting to see them on fire for Christ and we pray that this excitement will continue and they will share it with everyone they meet!