Raley Warner

Workstaff Counselor

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“Lord, give me wisdom.” Lake Forest Ranch changed my life. To say the staff, the kids, and more than anything, the love of the Father wrecked my shell, tore down the lies surrounding my heart, and renewed me in the depths of my soul, falls so short of the magnitude of what I’ve experienced this summer.  “Hallelujah, You have saved me, so much better this way, and hallelujah, great Defender, so much better Your way.  When I thought I lost one, You knew where I left one.”

Now I just needed that to preface my story because He is so good.  I am in awe of His compassion.  I was given the opportunity to be a counselor for the first time during Kids Camp E.  I will be honest with you by admitting I was very unsure and uncomfortable going into this experience.  Up until this part I had been serving on Workstaff and was loving it. The community was beautiful and I had grown comfortably fond of my place in it.  During this time, however, I began to pray that the Lord would cause me to be pushed out of my comfort zone and move me into a place of dependence on Him.  He did not let me down.  My first week as a counselor wore me out, wore me down, and required not only humility, but strength, patience, and anything else one could desire for effective leadership and wisdom.  None of these can be created by us, of course, and must instead be given by our loving Father.  How merciful He was to provide what I needed in the exact time I needed it.  Working here has completely given me a fresh / real understanding of His faithfulness.  Wow.  He is so faithful.

The night of “LFR After Dark” during that first week, I had the opportunity to walk with two of my campers as they made the best decision of their lives, and chose Jesus. I was blown away by the wisdom of words these little girls used as the Father touched their hearts and moved them the way only He can.  Being a part of that moment, so undeserving and unsure, was a testament to me of His kindness.  He gives us so much goodness, if only we would choose to see.

Being on staff this summer allowed me to see God’s goodness and magnificence in more ways than I can count.  “Overwhelmed, astounded, content, renewed and in awe,” is the closest I can come to explaining the gravity of what I hold in my heart. What will I remember?  Everything. “Oh magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together!”  Psalm 34:3