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The life of a camp staff child.
This spring marks the end of the second year of the Living Waters Teleios program. It’s hard to believe we’ve already completed two years. The word Teleios is a Greek word found in the key verse Colossians 1:28-29, “We proclaim Him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature (Greek: teleios) in Christ. To this end we labor, struggling with all His energy, which so powerfully works in us.
The mission of the Teleios program is to propel students toward maturity in Christ, so that the power of the life of Christ can be unleashed in them as they obey His command to make disciples of all nations. In this second year of the program, we welcomed Simon Maurer from Belgium and Makala Willette from Minnesota. Makala has been a longtime camper at Living Waters while Simon literally had no idea what he was getting into. He just came to learn English.
Through serving at camp, evening Bible studies, Teleios classes, prayer meetings, and living with a family in ministry, the students are challenged to grow in their walk with Christ and their service to His kingdom.
Simon said that he “came to learn English but God brought him here for another purpose.” You see, Simon knew about God but did not know Him as his Lord and Savior when he came to Living Waters. Simon committed his life to the Lord this year and plans to return to school in Belgium to study linguistics. He says he is considering a calling to Bible translation someday.
Makala came to learn more about food service but also grew emotionally and spiritually. She started in the kitchen last fall helping where needed and now she is a head cook for meals for our guest groups. She also testifies of the growth she has encountered this past year. She plans to continue to serve in the kitchen this summer as Summer Staff.
Makala and Simon served long and hard alongside the full-time staff at camp. It was such a joy to watch them grow through challenge and learn from experience. It is with sadness that we say good bye to Makala and Simon but we are grateful to God for the way He worked in their lives and through the ministry of Living Waters. Simon returned home last week and Makala will soon return to serve on Summer Staff.
If you or someone you know would be interested in the training available through Teleios please review the program on our website.
At Living Waters Bible Camp, we foster a culture of missions minded work by providing a platform for service. If you would like to serve the Lord in mission work as a volunteer in our summer camp programs, you will need to attend one of these training sessions for essential training.
Lombard IL, March 25th
Wausau WI, April 8th
Westby WI, June 10th
Click here to find out more!
As the summer schedule wrapped up in August, most of the summer staff went back to school or other jobs. However, we were privileged to have three staff that committed to serving for three more months. Jediah and Adelle Partenheimer and Rebekah Loew served a vital role during our busy retreat season. Their time at camp has come to an end and they will be heading home soon. I sat down with each of them to ask them about their experience.
Why do you serve at Living Waters?
Jediah's first response was a robust "It's the best camp!" After further thought they all agreed that it was the joy of leading nature programs and working with the other staff. Jediah concluded with, "It is a meaningful place to impact people for Christ while learning so much."
How did the retreat season differ from the summer season?
Adelle answered "Busier! There are more needs and less staff make it happen." However, that has a plus side. Rebekah pointed out that when a group comes to camp you get to know them better than you do a summer camper because you are with them for more activities. "In the summer, I led my one program and only saw each camper once." Rebekah continued, "In the fall I facilitated several activities with the same group and got to know the guests better."
What did you do in the evening?
"If we weren't working we were at a Bible study," was the summary of the answer. Bible studies, prayer meetings or group fellowship are available every night, Sunday to Thursday in the camp community.
What was the most challenging task?
- Number 2 was staying up until 1:30am with the Ladies Retreat. "Those ladies like to talk."
- Number 1 was cutting down all the Buckthorn around camp. "It can be painful."
Rebekah shared a story from her time facilitating a nature program. She explained how her group stepped out of the nature center to observe the ropes which outline the dimensions of Noah's Ark. The ropes are very high and very long. She said one boy looked up and exclaimed "Holy Hannah! That's bigger than my house!"
All in all they agreed that their experience at camp has been rewarding and life altering. They are thankful for the time to be a part of the ministry and are sad about leaving. We are sad to see them go and pray the Lord will provide strong workers again next year!
Almost anyone who has been involved with Living Waters Bible Camp over the last twenty-six years knows and loves the Hart family. About three years ago, they moved to Living Waters, and began serving faithfully as full-time staff. Each member of the family has filled their roles at camp and beyond, whether it be in the kitchen washing dishes, up front teaching a class, behind the scenes taking photos, or among the staff and campers forming relationships and reaching out. However, as it says in Ecclesiastes, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” The Harts will relocate to Wausau, WI by the end of July, and begin serving at Bible Truth Chapel - one of the founding churches of Living Waters This will be a bitter-sweet change, so in light of their upcoming move, I have asked the family to share a little bit about the transition.
What will you treasure most about your time living and serving here at Living Waters?
The whole family will miss the convenience of living at camp, serving alongside the staff, not to mention the view from their house at the top of the hill. Two things Dave says he will miss the most: the camp staff and orange creamsicle floats. “Everyone is such a servant,” reflects Dave. “The staff sacrifices so much to help each other, and this makes camp a remarkable place of peace.”
How will each of you be spending your time in Wausau?
Dave will serve as the “teaching pastor” at BTC. Since the church has a growing number of new believers attending, his role will be to disciple and then train others to do the same. Recently graduated from high school, Aubrey will be attending Northcentral Technical College in Wausau to pursue a graphic design degree. On the side, she’ll still be keeping up her calligraphy and watercolor business (BellePlume), and she also hopes to get involved with CRU. Ethan plans to stay busy taking some college classes, finding a job, as well as getting involved playing music and maybe sports.
Monica has had a busy spring, graduating from the dental hygiene program at Northcentral, getting engaged to Ryan Maurer, and landing her first job, and renting her first apartment in Onalaska.
How can we pray for and encourage you as you make this transition?
Moving in the middle of the busy summer camp season presents a special challenge, but - thankfully - know quite a few people at both ends who can help.
Pray for their house in Kentucky to sell! (Dave)
Ethan would like prayer to find a good friend group and to be able to get involved in Wausau. But more importantly, pray that he would have older guy friends to be mentored and discipled by.
Similarly, pray for Monica as she moves out that she would find ways to get involved in ministry and other areas.
Please pray for Aubrey that she would continue to listen to where God is leading her and not just “assume” the next step. Also, she would appreciate your prayers in adjusting to the new lifestyle.
Sandy admits, “It’s hard to pull your roots from one place.” They will miss their old life and will need prayers for getting acclimated to their new situation.
Hart family, we will miss you and will be praying for you every step of the way!