Wednesday, June 30, 2010

An Anecdote

Raspberry Ridge. It's like an idea, a place, and something quite out of reach at the same time, so please forgive the haziness of this post.

The week was hard. The people were sometimes very hard to work with. Tears were shed. Sweat was wrought (especially because it was the hottest week of the summer so far). Patience was tried. Instruments were almost mangled by the humidity. And yet, through it all, God was glorified. By the end of a week and two days, everyone was tired.

A small anecdote of how tired I was the very last day of camp (jr.):

It was early in the morning, about 8:30, and the junior orchestra was playing a rousing, squeaky variation of some song, which I don't remember because of the fog I was in. Gram, the dear, sweet, old lady who owns the property and lives there with her husband Jack, had just come out of the house with an aerosol can in her hands. The previous day I could remember seeing someone walking around with a bottle of WD-40 in their hands to use on something, so in my fog, I automatically assumed that Gram had the bottle of WD-40.

My thoughts when I realized that she was walking into the tent that housed the junior orchestra and its squeaky music was, oh, that's nice! Gram's going to take WD-40 and use it to make all the squeaks in Junior orchestra go away. To which I automatically shook my head and stared at myself.

My goodness was I tired.

When she walked out of the tent, past me, I found to my relief that she was holding a can of wasp spray. She was merely going to wreak havoc on the wasps in the barn again. Apparently she had wandered into the tent seeking, for some reason, an industrial stapler.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Raspberry Ridge time!

It's Raspberry Ridge time again.

Every year I go to a summer camp that holds a very high place in my heart. It's a place where I can bring my violin (or viola as it turns out this year) and play pieces that are both gorgeous and inspire, but also bring glory to God in the most amazing way possible. This year, our theme is "To the Ends of the Earth."

Raspberry Ridge holds a special place in my heart because it's a place that I can keep to my chest, as if holding a glowing hope. Raspberry Ridge, to me is a picture of Heaven. It's a small symbol of what Heaven will be like. Every year, we have people from all types of denominations, of many different races, of different ages, playing different instruments, some even speak a different birth language. But for one week out of every year, we come together with the same purpose in mind. We come to glorify God to the best of our abilities. There are deep discussions that range from predestination to gun control and back again. Almost everything there is used to make the people involved better Christ Followers. We have Bible Studies that are carefully thought out before hand and the music, the theory classes, and the ensembles all tie into the themes somehow.

I walked into the Raspberry Ridge property today and felt like I was entering my secret garden, a sacred place. This is the place where God has moved and spoken and touched me and everyone at the camp. This is the camp where we've weathered bad weather and a plethora of other dilemmas, including hurricanes, deaths of people who work there and are family members of campers, bloodied faces that require stitches, and cancer. God has pulled all of us together through it. And pulled us all through it together.

Raspberry Ridge has become my family. I have friends who I see only one week a year, but I feel closer to these people sometimes than I do to the people I see every day for a year. In other words, I have brothers and sisters in Christ at Raspberry Ridge, and for that I'm thankful.

Thank God for Raspberry Ridge.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Odds & Ends

Summer has come rolling in.

In a tank.

With a gun on top.

And a man manning (what else would he be doing? Womaning?) the gun.

With summer comes a small dose of sun burn, bleaching hair, and thunderstorms, a large dose of tan, stress, and a heaping helping of items of both boredom and excitement, and loneliness.

The pool opened on Memorial Day weekend. The pool was as packed as the threatening storms would allow. Since then, I've been life guarding pretty heavily, with yesterday as my heaviest day yet.

In a week, my favorite camp, Raspberry Ridge, starts! I'm playing viola solely! I'm very excited.

Also, I would covet your prayers, whoever is out there, as I struggle with the daily with balancing my growing affections Michael and my desire to pursue God and find my worth and identity in Him.

(Yes, sometimes I feel a little like Nick Cage running through a graveyard with the Declaration of Independence on my back, while being shot at by a guy who is out to get my guts! But only rarely.)