(Above is my first video of the summer, which is also the opening for each camp)
You’re Going to Be in Pictures My Boy!
Never does my amazement cease regarding the ways in which God teaches us. Some of you know that I am spending my summer,-scratch that- Some of you know that I am investing my summer, at a Bible camp in Iowa. This is my fifth summer actually. Each summer God has used camp to both train and equip me in my continued pursuit of following Him. More so the past few summers, than others. Over the years I have held several different positions, and one of my jobs this year, has been a true joy to fill. In a day I wear a couple different hats, but one of my primary roles is that of media, meaning I film all of the activities and events over the course of each camp, then put together a movie at the end of the week. In the very beginning of the summer this was an overwhelming idea as I had never picked up a video camera, nor edited any digital media (apart from blogging) ever in my life. With that, I took everything I had learned from my years of being a snob about, endlessly pouring over Wes Anderson, Woody Allen, Robert Altman, Orson Welles, Stanley Kubrick, and so many great filmmakers, and applied it to my work. To my surprise, doubt, and even still today, my insecurity, I learned how to do it, and if responses at the end of each week to the video are any indicator, I learned how to do it well.
When You Least Expect it
What has been amazing to me, fulfilling this role, making these movies, is the lessons I continue to learn, in places, through ways, that I least expect it. Among other things, God has given me the chance to spend the summer, doing a job that is both creative and a challenge. The thing that makes my job doubly cool, apart from making a fun film, in which I get to share it at the end of the week, is the opportunity the job gives me to get to know campers, or at the very least have a presence among them. EVERY camper knows the cameraman, either because they have attempted to photo bomb my shots time and time again, or from my interaction as I try to coax them into doing something interesting for the camera. At the end of each week I am always in awe of how many kids know my name, and challenged when I do not know theirs back.
Naturally, I am more of a creative person, not a people person, but as each week goes by, as I have to film people, as I watch clips, edit clips, over and over, I am gaining, seeing, feeling, a deeper sense of people, their beauty, and how little I view them the way God does. Having to spend your whole week filming and staring at clips of people, makes you start to wonder about what makes them tick. Lately, as I spend each evening editing I have stopped to think about all of these people, their stories, and what makes them who they are. Many, staff and camper alike, have known, have seen, maybe even still know and see, brokenness, yet they are still able to smile, to be joyful, to produce laughter, and as I think on this, I am able to start putting aside all the things that annoy me about or causes me to dislike, people, and see them the way God does. God has shown us how to love people, and while we are not love ourselves, we have the love of Christ in us, and that is all we need to love them. We cannot be love, but we can let Him be love through us. The other thing is, loving people, is not just something you think about, you have to actually do it. As I think about loving people, I have to actually go out and start loving them. You have to put into practice what you know about love, not just know it. You have to choose it, you have to act on it, even when you do not feel, when you do not want to, when you do not love people. Love is just as much choice, as it is motivation and action. What I thought would be a job disconnected from people this summer, has been one of my greatest steps towards loving people better.
God loves people, why don’t we?