A Fork in the Road

It’s been probably a few months since I’ve posted, and I apologize. There were/are some things going on, and I wanted to wait until decisions had been made before saying anything.

About 8 months ago, one of my cousins and I had a good talk about growing up, goals in life, and where my spiritual life was at. It was a good talk, and at the time, I didn’t know much about what I would be doing after June, when I graduated from Clark with my Associates Degree. The summer and life after held endless possibilities.

Well anyway, she suggested that I apply to work in the kitchen at her camp, since they needed more help, and I didn’t have a clue what I would be doing. I took her advice, and applied. I started the first week of July, and enjoyed almost every minute working at the camp. For the first four weeks, I was stationed up at Buck Creek, a lovely spot up near Crystal Mt Ski Lodge. It was beautiful up there, and I did some growing in both spirit and life. About this time, near the end of July, I learned that there was the possibility of me staying on and having a year round job at Berachah. I decided to wait until I worked down at the main camp before talking about staying on. I knew that working in the food services was the only job I’ve had where even on the bad days, I still enjoy coming back the next day. This time was exciting as I had never considered camp ministry as a year round job occupation.

After working half a week at main camp, praying about it, and talking it over with certain family members and friends, I decided to go for it-and I got the job! I was so excited. New things were happening, and it was looking great. I moved away from home, away from close friends and family, for the first time. And it is hard. It is very hard to move away on your own, away from a place where you’ve lived for almost half your life, to a place where you only have 2 or 3 friends.

It helped that my cousin Rel was also working at the same camp, and we’ve become very close over the last 3-4 months. She’s been my immediate go-to for advice, as well as my hang-out gal. I’m so glad God blessed me with my first away-from-home job to be at the same place as my cousin. Anyways, she’s been a good mentor, and a great advice giver.

After I arrived back “for good”, fully moved in, I knew that my first month here would just be volunteer work to pay for housing. Here’s how this works; Because I’m part time and living on site, a.k.a they are providing housing, I volunteer for the cost of room and board, about 16 hours a week. Anything I do after 16 hours I get paid. Because my boss had already scheduled September before she took me on, she could only make sure I got enough hours to pay for housing. I inferred that meant I would be getting more hours, and therefore get paid, starting in October. Well, that hasn’t been true, mainly because we haven’t had enough groups for provide more hours to be paid for. But it’s okay, things are picking up here and I do have enough money put away to provide me with 4 more months of living without income. I’m doing just fine. A little rocky, but just fine.

Now to the harder part. I have learned more things about the leadership here and the administration, as well as the financial situation and history of the camp. Things aren’t looking good. The people in charge of the camp are not good at finances or learning from their mistakes, and sooner or later this camp, I believe, will go under. Unfortunately, those up at the top are unwilling to share things with the staff, so many of us are in the dark about things here. Now, don’t get me wrong, many of the staff here, including those in leadership, are nice, lovable people, and I don’t want you to get the wrong impression, that they’re all villianous types. Many of them are also pretty strong Christians. Right now their only flaws are not relying on God, and not learning from their mistakes.

And now here’s what I’ve been building up to. I’ve decided that pretty soon it will be time to move on. I don’t know if the camp will last a year, five years, or only a few months. I just know that it’s time to start thinking about moving on. I’ve struggled with feeling like a failure, since the first job I took as turned out not that great, but I know that something not turning out well does not make one a failure. Rejection is not failure, it’s redirection. As for the redirection, here’s what I’ve come up with.

I’m pretty sure I want to keep working in camp food service. I think that it would be a good idea for me to take part in an internship at a camp. Most good internships will have you work/train in different areas of the camp, learn what fits you best. Some of the internships are paid, but most are unpaid, and you’d have to raise support or pay to attend. I plan to stay here hopefully till May. Then I plan on getting another job until going in for an internship. Things may change, but that’s my skeleton plan. Whether or not that’s what happens is all in God’s hands.

I’m looking into a couple different internships, one located at Crista Camps, in Washington, one in Wisconsin, and one in Texas. I’m also looking into a job down in Catalina, California, in the food service at a Christian Camp down there. Right now there’s no hurry, and I am enjoying those I work with and the work I do. I’ve already talked about it with my parents, and they, thankfully, are very supportive and helpfully encouraging. 🙂 I am so thankful for my parents, who have raised me in a household of God, and are willing to let me find who I am as an adult and as a Christian.

I would appreciate prayer that I am following God’s will, and that He would show me where and when to go. Also, prayer for God’s direction for my coworkers would be greatly appreciated as well. Many of those I talk with are starting to assess their positions and what their future holds.

I know that this is a long post, but it’s an important one. Thank you so much for reading, and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask! 🙂

Sincerely,

Michelle

IMG_20141023_172608 20141019_145153 20141019_143335 20141019_143520 20141019_125611From beginning to end, Me, My mother and youngest sibling reading at the library, shots of my sisters at the library, and a pic of my youngest sis during lunch with my parents, sisters, and cousin. 🙂

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