Lake Ann has to be the most awesomest (not a word, but I don’t care) camp in the world. I don’t have much to compare Lake Ann to but I don’t think you can compare it.
Everything there has a purpose, from the challenge courses to the games and activities. Everything has a spiritual purpose. I went to a Baptist (nothing against Baptist) camp when I was younger. The camp which I talked about a week ago pushed salvation. If you don’t get save you are going to hell, BAM! That is all the preached. I got saved so many times. The reason was out of guilt and the fact that I didn’t want to go to hell. And well, who does?
Lake Ann provides a great experience. First off, you are put our of your comfort zone. You are stuck with people that you have never met before. You might just have 1 or 2 people that you know in your cabin, but for the most part you don’t know any of them. This is super scary, I’m a naturally quieter person so being stuck with 20 other people that I haven’t ever met before is very scary. This allows you to open up. There is absolutely no way that I could have opened up in front of my youth group. I see those guys everyday at school. I would feel their watchful eyes on the back of my head wondering if he’s screwed up. Psychologically this was my thought about coming clean with my porn and lust issue.
At Lake Ann you:
More Challenge courses
Group activity (teams) Each cabin and sister cabin are in a team and they have activities to challenge your team and another.
Camp fire (weather pending)
Lights out (usually at 11pm or 12)
This schedule is harsh mentally and physically, if you are lucky you might get 6 hours of sleep. Lunch is horrible too; you eat but then you are cheering trying to gain points for fight night. This schedule doesn’t leave much time for free time. This whole set up is to promote spiritual discussion and thinking. The Chapel time is pretty powerful, and the team building gets you comfortable with your cabin mates. Lunch is to physically stretch you and also team building. The whole experience is getting you to open up to these people you met just hours before hand.
With me, I already had been to Lake Ann, I knew what to expect, but then again I didn’t. Right away I was challenged, and had a meeting with my counselor and explained to him some of my troubles. I did not explain my issues with porn, just my issues with mentoring and trust. Being able to open up to him was astounding on my part. I don’t open up to very many people. Actually there is only about 2 or 3 people that actually know me and sadly none of them are my own family. I have a hard time opening up to them. I have always had trust issues, but being able to open up to Matt totally helped. About a day later, that night actually, after chapel I talked to Matt about my issues with porn, and was severely convicted. This is where we cried. Read about it here. The whole Lake Ann experience brought me back to what really mattered. It opened my hear and allowed me to be honest about my struggles. That night we had what called the glory bowl. It’s where you can speak about what you have been challenged with, or whatever God has laid on your heart. I sat in line for 1 hour and eventually warned the junior highers not to be naive. To be ready to fight porn. Years ago, I knew what porn was, I knew that I should of avoided it, but I didn’t. I fell to my knees in the face of it.
My goal: If I can stop one kid, teen, adult; from struggling the same I have won. I don’t want to see other go through the pain and the guilt that I have went through. I don’t want people to have to hide and lie about it. I myself have lied about it to my own parents. I have jumped around the bush about it. It is time to wake up teens and adults.
FATHERS: Be real with your kids about it. Even your daughters. It is an epidemic that affects everyone. Not just guys, even women struggle with it, if they don’t then you obviously don’t have facebook. It is everywhere. Be real about it, be honest to your kids when they bring up their questions. It is your job to prepare your kids for the real world. Prepare them! How can you prepare them when they don’t know about lust and the sin that comes with it.
This article didn’t go exactly where I wanted it to go, but please don’t throw this off like it’s nothing. I hate it when people doubt my maturity just because of my age. Take heed and be warned, that it is real and it’s only the beginning.
Philippians 1:12 May the gospel be advanced through you and the words you share.