Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Short Sunday – Sick Sunday

Well, they are going to start referring to us as the Miss-A-Service-Soderstroms. Sort of like Whack-A-Mole. You know, if the mole didn’t show up.

Anyway, this is the second Sunday in a row I’ve gotten sick.

Two Sundays ago, it was the blinding migraine that KO’d me for the rest of the day. This past Sunday it was a stomach bug that lasted into the early evening!

Am I allergic to church? :-)

It was so disappointing to miss the Sunday Services!

We were able to make it to the Family Breakfast and Bible Hour, but then we (I, really) had to dash for very good reasons.

Still - to all you husbands out there - when your wife is nauseous, and you have to leave church early, do not make jokes about “eating and running.”

This is in poor taste and may have your wife delivering some payback via her breakfast onto your shoes.

Just FYI.

My husband now knows this.

For the short time we were at church, we did enjoy the FB&BH. There was a special guest, Trevor Gearhart, one of the camp program directors for Northland Baptist Bible Camp and Conference Center. Or something like that.

Northland brings back fond memories for me.

I went to camp at Northland a couple of times when I was a kid. I remember riding the bus from Berean as we picked up other kids from churches in Schaumburg.

I especially remember two twin boys, Adam and Carl, who managed to get gum in all the girls’ hair by the end of the bus ride.

Nothing says “camp” better than having your counselor cover your head in peanut butter to get the gum out. And nothing endears you more to your sister campers than smelling like generic-brand peanut butter that the camp hadn’t planned on using to get gum out of campers’ hair.

Gummy, peanut-smelling hair aside, I had a good time at Northland.

In many ways, Northland was my kind of camp. There were comfortable six person cabins with soft bunks for sleeping. Showers and flush toilets in the cabins. A fully stocked commissary. And lots of free time.

In fact that’s what I remember most about Northland. We had more free time than I experienced at Camp Joy. There was time to go swimming and hiking at our leisure. There was structure; it just wasn’t as severe as other camps.

Northland suffered from the competition craziness that all camps did back then – and maybe do now. I remember being on a red or blue team and having to say this stupid cheer over and over again:

“A back-a, back-a, back” (said while leaning back)
“Side-to, side-to” (said while leaning side to side)
“Leaaaaaaaan forward!” (said while…well, you know)
“GO RED!!!!!!!” (said while jumping up and down and generally acting like an idiot)

Stupid.

I knew it then. I know it now. Dumb ‘ol competition. Why can’t we all just get along?

Of course, now I know I’m a “blue” and as a child would have benefited more from encouragement than competition, but I didn’t know that then.

Not that it would have helped. No one would have heard me over that stupid camp cheer.

Anyway, overall, I loved Camp Northland. It was by far my most favorite camping experience. The scenery was beautiful, and my counselor took a genuine interest in my spiritual condition. Which was totally new for me.

It was an encouragement to see that the camp is still going stronger. The camp featured in Mr. Gearhart’s video is prettier, more modern, and glossier than the still-somewhat-primitive cabins I remember.

But the camp’s heart is still there. The mission and the atmosphere are still vibrant with openness, and the love of godly counselors with the power to change lives.

And, hopefully this summer, a little girl just like me pulled the gum out of her hair and enjoyed her week at camp!

4 comments:

Cindy Swanson said...

Wow...Camp Northland sounds great!

My youth camp experiences when I was growing were wonderful...some of the best memories of my life. We went to camp with teens from all over northwest Louisiana and northeast Texas. Like your camp, there was structure, but flexibility, and sooo much fun!

Heidi said...

Missed you Sunday night. Chris did his presentation on his trip to Jamaica for Global Grace and showed us ways we can help them recover from Hurricane Dean. It was quite interesting.
Glad you are feeling better.
I too enjoyed camp. Our church was so isolated that we went to our own camp with our own counsellors. There was no way we could take a chance associating with anyone who might not wear coulottes.

Jennittia said...

SOOOO love Camp Northland!! Those are some of my best memories. Oh, to have a good Christian camp in Northern New England... :)

WendyJanelle said...

I only ever went to two camps, and both were rugged and extremely structured. I wish I had good memories like that to pull out.

Btw, I also hate competitive games.