By Ryan Snitzer, current Board Member and past Camp Counselor
You’re never too old for camp!
This summer I put that to the test, serving as a volunteer counselor and reliving my glory days dunking campers and playing giants, wizards and elves. Fortunately, this time I was staying in a lodge room - otherwise I may not have survived the week as my energetic self on coffee alone!
A week at Gilmont was all I could have asked for and more. It was spiritually refreshing to see campers of mine years ago now serving as counselors, leading campers in energizers, bible study, and endless camp activities. They were continuing to pay it forward, by giving back their time and heart to a place we all cherish.
In the craziness of this world, we often long to go back to the thin places where we can be closer to God. With constant life changes, we may feel like we’re too busy or far away to be able to enjoy a week, let alone a weekend at Gilmont.
The truth is that camp never leaves us. I know I speak for so many of us in saying that Gilmont is a part of who we are. It’s a part of our faith journey. It’s a part of helping us grow closer to God, creation, others, and ourselves.
You don’t have to be physically present at Gilmont to continue to be a part of its mission. In fact, I’ve found that the work I do outside of Gilmont’s walls to further its mission makes me love it that much more. It makes coming home to camp even more meaningful when I see the campers buying into the summer’s theme, Gushers of God’s Love.
God has definitely been at work sowing seeds at Gilmont these last few years through the pandemic. And He has even greater things ahead!
Although Gilmont’s physical location remains a safe, sacred space for everyone, we are all a part of its broader community beyond the piney woods of East Texas. That community takes place in deeply personal ways whether its Circle of Friends, summer camp, retreats, or a rental group visiting for the first time.
Wherever you are in life, I’d challenge you to consider the unique opportunities you have to give back to Gilmont to further its mission. If you’re like me, that decision to say “yes” will give back a hundred times over.
I hope you’ll join us in praying, giving, and participating at Gilmont this fall. Whether it’s joining the Battle of the Bags on October 8th, inviting a friend to a camp or retreat, or supporting its ministry financially by becoming a monthly energizer, God has a place for each of us at Gilmont.
Yes, Gilmont needs you! Gilmont needs all of us.