A Walk to the Lake
In the summer of 1983, I was just graduated from high school and just asked by my Campus Life staff person to volunteer and help the club for the coming year. So as I took the bus up to Silver Birch Ranch in Wisconsin. I was part staff, part student. Like most 18 year olds, I felt all adult and none kid.
At camp I remember being mostly student. I clowned around a lot and made people laugh. One such time was early evening as many of us were going down to the lake to swim. I was in a jogging suit with my swimsuit underneath. I was pulling all my unneeded clothes off and tossing them where they might land saying very loudly: "Must! Swim! Now!" After I had all but my trunks off, I ran wildly into the water and dived in as the water came up past my trunk.
Apparently, I created quite a scene, as one of the new Campus Life staff people asked the person they were standing with if I might perhaps, be a "special needs" child.
As I approached the water I was of singular purpose: entering the water. In the years that followed, John Swale, the staff person who questioned my ability to function in normal society, became a friend and mentor.
What I gleaned from our friendship was this: approach life like I approached the lake. A singular purpose of following Christ by serving others. This approach brought me to Western Illinois University, where I met Amy, brought me to Russia, South Carolina and back to Illinois. Through the years, I have sometimes lost track of that purpose, but God has always gently nudged me back in that direction.
Now a quarter century has passed since that walk to the lake. It is important that I continue to model the singular purpose of Loving God through serving others to my family. But I still like to walk into a lake helter skelter from time to time.
Next Time: Skiing, Swimming, Super Bowl, or Sox Fest.