Visiting Crystal Lake Camps, 2010
By Ted TonkinThis past summer I was able to visit CLC when picking up my brother. I met with many friends and familiar faces and even got to see some of my previous campers working as staff. It was so great to come back, even for a few hours, and be where it has always felt like home.
I had attended camp, when I was a teenager, for about three years and I loved being out in the wilderness, enjoying nature and learning more about Christian Science. In college I came back to Crystal Lake to work as a camp counselor and I loved doing that even more. I could tell that I was growing as a person and a Christian Scientist by using what I had learned in Sunday school and applying it to being the best counselor I could be (and also being the best person I could be).
Being in charge of a bunch of kids, no matter what age they are, definitely has its challenges, but I was happy to keep them safe and be helping them learn more about themselves and their spiritual identities as children of God. And helping them helped me become a better person. Being unselfish helped me help them, which in turn helped me become the best “me” that I could be.
When I went to pick up my brother, I had just moved back home to Pennsylvania from another state 4 days earlier. I had just left a job and a city that I had called home for almost two years and I was getting ready to go back to school and find a new job. It all seemed pretty daunting. But being back at camp felt so peaceful and I was really happy. It was like coming home and I felt like I had never left. It was so gratifying to be back at camp, even if it was only for a couple hours.
But our real home is not a place, or physical location. Our home is always with God. And camp was one of the best places to be with and learn about God. I have taken what I learned at camp and Christian Science and applied it to any situation I can. I let my knowledge of God and who I am as His child grow as I continue on throughout my life.
And coming back this summer reminded how grateful I am for that growth.
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Ted, this is such a great post! You wrote it in such an honest and direct way about what makes camp so awesome! Thanks for writing this!