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Afternoon Gathering at Day Camp

The campers filed in for Afternoon Gathering with bandanas tied around their heads to represent their color teams and sweat dripping from their faces to represent the fun they had at the activities they just finished. After they settled into chairs, Bryce handed out the afternoon snack: Teddy Grahams. For the next few minutes, the campers talked to each other and ate their snacks, enjoying the air conditioning.

Every day of Day Camp ends with Afternoon Gathering. It is a time for everyone to come together, sing worship songs, and learn from a Bible story. This week, members of our Summer Staff are leading the Gathering. After campers go home at night, they’ve spent time preparing by reading the Bible, praying, and writing out a lesson.

The Afternoon Gathering starts with singing. The campers stand up and watch the staff members who show them the hand motions for the songs and then they sing along. Today the little voices came together to sing about coming together to praise Jesus and obeying God when faced with temptation.

After singing, they settled back into their seats to hear Jonathan give the day’s Bible lesson. Jonathan taught about the next part of Joseph’s story from Genesis 40, focusing on verse fourteen: “But when all goes well for you, remember that I was with you. Please show kindness to me by mentioning me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison.”

In this passage, Joseph was still in prison being punished for a crime he did not commit. Jonathan asked the kids if they had ever been in trouble for something they didn’t do. Lots of little hands shot up and a few blurted stories of times their siblings got them in trouble, clearly understanding the injustice at hand.

While Joseph was in prison, two other prisoners had troubling dreams and Joseph was asked to interpret them. Kids raised their hands again to indicate that they too have had bad dreams.

Joseph interpreting dreams is a big part of the story, but Jonathan focused specifically on Joseph’s compassion. He helped the kids understand compassion as putting others first and being kind. Verse fourteen showed that Joseph had compassion on the other prisoners and asked for compassion in return.

Jonathan flipped to the New Testament and talked about Joseph’s compassion as a shadow of Jesus’ compassion. Jesus was known for his compassion towards the sick, poor, and outcasts. Joseph and Jesus put other people first, and in the same way God is compassionate with us.

Jonathan finished by talking about God’s compassion for us: “He loves you and longs to show compassion to you.” When we know that God loves us, we also desire to show love, kindness, and patience to others like Joseph and Jesus did.

Pink Team at the Swim Hole

Pink Team at Swim Hole

Isobel and Storey

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