For the sixth year in a row, Journey Kids took a group of elementary kids to Camp KidJam. Every year, both the kids and the leaders come home with fresh understanding of biblical truth and a renewed look at life. Of course, this year was no different. We traveled to Wingate University with our largest group ever, 37 kids and 8 leaders. KidJam challenged our kids with this year’s camp theme: “Move.”
Every session, kids experienced exciting and messy games, engaging worship, entertaining stories, and an inspiring message. The verse for the week that the kids were challenged to memorize came from Philippians 3:14. “I move on toward the goal to win the prize. God has appointed me to win it. The heavenly prize is Christ Jesus himself.”
In each session, kids were given a “Bottom Line” – a main takeaway from the message and story. This is similar to how in Uptown and throughout Journey Kids each Sunday, we impress a bottom line based on the story and small group activities. During the first morning sessions we heard the story of John the Baptist baptizing Jesus in Mark 1:1-11 and John 1:19-34. The story reminded us to listen to someone who is listening to God. The final story on the last night of camp was from John 3. It focused on the story of Nicodemus and his encounter with Jesus. The Pharisee continued to ask Jesus how the things Jesus boldly claimed were even possible. Jesus responded, “We speak to what we know, and bear witness to what we’ve seen.” The story taught us to believe in who Jesus says he is.
Kids walked away from camp, like they do every year, exhausted but with a clearer understanding of who God is and who he wants them to be. The Sunday after we returned from camp, I was talking with a mom in the hallway. I asked her if her son had fun at camp. She told me that he did have fun, but that all he wanted to talk about was what he learned while he was gone. She continued, saying that anytime she asked about camp he would get so excited to talk about how God wants him to move at home, in his school, and his neighborhood. In fact, she told me it wasn’t until two days later that he wanted to talk about the “fun” parts.
This was another incredible year at KidJam! We know this wouldn’t have been possible without the families of the campers, the prayers of Journey, and the generosity of church members. This year more than 10 kids were able to go to camp thanks to the generosity of Journey families who felt led to send a child to camp that may not otherwise have been able to go. We are extremely excited to see what all 37 kids do with their new knowledge and how they begin to move. We are already counting down the days to KidJam 2015!