I spent the last week of August (21st-27th) at my favorite place in the world. Forest Home, and specifically at Indian Village. Forest Home is a Christian conference center about 90 minutes outside of Los Angeles where I worked seasonally from 1999-2002. I spent most of my time at Indian Village, the Indian themed summer camp for 3rd-5th grade students. Through the summers of 99, 2000, and 2002, I did everything from counseling the students (living in a tepee with 7 boys) to serving as the “Little Chief” (program assistant director). The place changed my life, named me Maverick, and will always be a fond memory in my heart.
But that week I got the chance to return. I was up visiting on August 19th, and about halfway through the day I was asked to work the following week - because they were in need of counselors. With reluctant excitement (rib/timing of getting out to Colorado/Minnesota) I agreed.
Now, Forest Home is a bubble. It is a Christian camp on 500 acres of forest in the mountains outside Los Angeles. Their mission statement is “To provide a place away from the distractions of the world, where you can hear the Word of God and encounter Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit”. They succeed with this mission statement daily. However, it creates the problem of readjustment when you go down the hill - and this period of re-adjustment is especially difficult if you have spent 12 weeks on staff for a summer and then return to a University environment, for example.
I have personally been wrestling with this coming down period in the past week. My week at the Home was soooooo good. I re-learned so many lessons about trust and faith that I have tended to forget in the daily grind of living life. Remembering that I am not in control and I do need to let go of my pride and my control on life. I rediscovered my passion for serving in the ministry after a painful fallout last spring. I discovered several quality friendships with individuals that I share similar passions and like-mindedness. However, this past week I have been trying to figure out how to integrate those lessons and passions back into the daily routine, all while trying to get over missing the Home. I know that life cannot always be at the Home - because then we would be living in a bubble. I need to figure out how to transpose the passion and excitement from up the hill to daily life down the hill. Or maybe that is not possible? Maybe being at the Home, surrounded by believers, completely focused on God, and away from the distractions of the world, maybe that is a glimpse of Heaven on Earth. I want to share that glimpse with the world.