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jon hopkins

tribe co-chief

At Lake Forest Ranch every task, no matter how big or small, can impact a camper’s future. This is something that I realized this year at Student Camp 1. LFR after Dark is one of the most influential activities that Lake Forest offers each summer. I was allowed to be in charge of the second station, which was entitled the Mirror Station. At this station, there were six chairs each with a mirror with words that describe who we are without Christ and living life in our own strength. For this camp, I was not at a specific chair, but was standing outside waiting for the next group of campers, counselors, and adult leaders. The reasoning for this was that this station lasted a while and many times I would have to stop a group from entering so that the original group could finish their time at the station. When this would happen, I would ask the Father to give me the words to say and go to each group and let the Father speak. Most of the time, the words He gave were along these lines, “Take this time to examine your heart and ask the Lord to soften your heart during this time. Also, ask the Lord to prepare and work in your hearts and mind in a mighty and magnificent way.” I can’t quite say the number of times I spoke those words to campers, but I will remember this camp forever because of it. At that time, I never thought anything of those words or how impactful they could be for a camper. The verse that comes to mind is John 4:37, “For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’” I didn’t see the results of my labor until the following staff meeting. Papa Rich ended up asking how LFR after Dark turned out for the counselors. A counselor ended up sharing that one of her kids came to know Christ during LFR after Dark. She asked her camper when this happened, and she said “When Jon was telling us to pray outside of the mirror station.”  It amazes me that the Lord used the words that I spoke and softened the camper’s heart to accept Him before she even got into one of the most impactful stations this summer.