Followers Wanted

Posted by Karah


Quiet your heart and reflect on the meaning of the word follow. Ask God to give you a deeper understanding of what it means to follow Jesus.

“Follow Me,” Jesus told them, “and I will make you fishers of men!” Immediately they left their nets and followed Him. —Mark 1:17-18

Read Mark 1:14-20 in your Bible. Underline the phrase “the time is fulfilled” in verse 15. The Messiah God had promised long ago had entered history, and His plan of redemption was being fulfilled. Jesus’ first step was to call people to follow Him. Dig deeper with these questions:

The first disciples Jesus called were fishermen, uneducated and unimportant by society’s standards. What does that fact teach you about Jesus’ kingdom? Explain.

“Fishers of men” was a term Old Testament prophets used to describe gathering people for judgment, but Jesus was inviting Simon and Andrew to join Him in the urgent task of rescuing people from judgment. How does Jesus rescue us from judgment? Explain.

Think about the disciples’ lives before and after their encounter with Jesus. How was their life with Christ different from their life before? How is your life different from the way you lived before meeting Jesus?


Jesus called these men to simply follow Him. He didn’t tell them to get it all together or to understand every last detail. He called them to relationship with Him. He is still calling disciples to follow Him today.

Are you a disciple of Christ? Based on what?

Mull over how quickly the disciples responded to Jesus’ invitation. Do you typically follow immediately when Jesus calls you? Why or why not? Ask Him for a heart that desires to follow Him immediately, even when you don’t completely understand.

Following Jesus implies a relationship, allowing Him to be your teacher and guide. In what ways are you allowing Jesus to guide and lead you? In what areas are you trying to be the one in charge? What steps will you take today to give Jesus absolute control? List three in your journal.

For further study, read Follow Me: A Call to Live. A Call to Die by David Platt (Tyndale House Publishers, 2013).

Behind the Story

When calling the first disciples, Jesus used a concept that would have been familiar to these men: fishing. This had been the primary activity of their lives prior to their calling. Jesus told these new disciples they would now fish for men. He meant that their lives would no longer revolve around their old priorities. Their lives would now revolve around the most important thing—helping people experience new life through Jesus.

The Point

Disciples are called to live a new way of life.

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Summer Staff Bios Are Up!

Posted by Karah


As camp is approaching, we are getting so excited to see our team of staff come together, and we know you all are excited to meet them. We have put together Staff Bios so that you can learn a little bit about each of the summer staffers, and we would love for you all to check them out! Go to to “meet” the latest staff!

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Speed the Light

Posted by Karah


Start your quiet time in the darkest place you can find. Thank God for the light Jesus provides in this dark world. Invite Him to show you how you can respond to that light.

Read Matthew 4:12-17 in your Bible. From this point on, Jesus began His public ministry. Underline verse 17 as you read.

From then on Jesus began to preach,

“Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near!” —Matthew 4:17

Dig deeper with these questions:

According to verse 17, what was the central message of Jesus’ ministry? Write it in your own words.

How is life apart from Jesus described in verse 16? How is life without Jesus “darkness” and “the land of the shadow of death”? Explain.

Consider verse 17 once more. What is the primary way Jesus brought light into darkness during His earthly ministry? How does repentance bring us out of spiritual darkness and into the light?


Think about recent news stories or events in your own school or community. When you look at the world around you, do you see more darkness or light? Are people generally doing OK without Jesus? Journal a few thoughts below.

How does your answer to that question affect the urgency you feel for sharing the gospel?

What steps will you take this week to shine the light of Christ into a dark world? List two specific action points or the names of two people you will share your story with this week.

What is one way you can speed the light of the gospel to a world in darkness?

For further study, read Psalm 96:3; Matthew 28:19; and Matthew 24:14.

Behind the Story

Jesus made an important strategic move when He shifted His headquarters from Nazareth to Capernaum.

  • Capernaum was a much larger fishing center on the shores of Lake Galilee. It had a tax collection station and a Roman garrison of at least 100 soldiers.
  • Capernaum was part of an ancient trade route. Caravans traveled from Syria passed through regularly.
  • Capernaum provided easy access to every other city along the Galilean coast. Jesus was able to reach many Jews and Gentiles coming and going from this high-traffic location.

The Point

In Jesus, the kingdom of God has come near. We must proclaim this truth to the world.

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Dance Dare Anyone?!

Posted by Karah

When it’s a Friday and ya just need a little Dance Dare…

Come quickly Summer, come quickly!!

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Stand Firm

Posted by Karah


Think about what it would feel like to have your closest friends and family reject you. Thank Jesus for enduring rejection so you wouldn’t have to.

Earlier last month, you studied Simeon’s blessing of Jesus 40 days after His birth. Simeon had proclaimed that many people would reject Jesus, and we’ve now reached the point in Jesus’ ministry when that prediction began to be fulfilled. Read Luke 4:20-30 in your Bible.

After Jesus used the Isaiah passage to publicly declare He was the Messiah, the people who had watched Him grow up sat there in silence, amazed. Who did Jesus think He was?

Reread Luke 4:23-30. Jesus knew that the people were doubtful of His claims and wanted proof of His divine power. They knew He had performed miracles in Capernaum and wanted Him to do the same in Nazareth.

When have you wanted proof that Jesus was at work in a situation rather than trusting Him? Explain.

He also said,

“I assure you: No prophet is accepted in his hometown.” —Luke 4:28-30

Answer these questions

How did Jesus respond to the peoples’ desire for Him to perform on command?

Jesus performed miracles at God’s leading and according to God’s purposes, not because people demanded them. Jesus was interested in people who had faith in Him rather than what He could do for them. In response to the peoples’ desire, Jesus began listing Old Testament prophets who had to go far away, even outside of Israel, to find people of faith.

Why would this have enraged the people? Explain.

Look at verse 40. Despite the peoples’ fury and rejection, Jesus remained focused on God’s plan and purpose for His life. How can we remain focused on Jesus and His gospel in a world that rejects Him?


What are some specific steps you can take to remain focused on your purpose and ministry, even when the world around you rejects Jesus? List two in your journal.

If someone rejects the gospel when you share your faith, don’t take it as a personal failure. You have been faithful to share the hope you have and you are not held accountable for the person’s response. Who will you be bold enough to share with this week, even if it means enduring rejection?

For further study of rejection, read John 15:18-25.

Behind the Story

Although Luke placed this event first in Jesus’ public ministry, scholars doubt it was first chronologically. It is clear that Jesus had already been engaged in a ministry of preaching and healing, which explains the reference to His miracles in Capernaum. The invitation to read and comment on the Scripture in the synagogue was not an honor that was given lightly—and Jesus would have more likely been afforded it after He had established Himself as a religious teacher.

The Point

We live in a world that rejects Jesus daily. We must remain focused on the gospel.

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WillPower 5K

Posted by Sharon

We are in Nashville for the 4th WillPower 5K which takes place tomorrow! This has been such a fun time to reunite with our camp family and support Will NeSmith and his family! Will suffered from a spontaneous brain hemorrhage while he was at camp in 2012. It is a miracle he is with us today! The race began to “raise awareness for stroke recovery and HHT.” There have been close to 1,000 or over 1,000 runners each year. The race was even featured in the Forbes Travel Guide as one of the top 3 best races for beginner runners!
Read more here… www.willpower5k.comimage

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Life’s Purpose

Posted by Karah


Prepare your heart to hear from the Lord today. Listen to your favorite worship song, recite Scripture, read a psalm, pray, or simply sit in silence dwelling on His character.

Read Luke 4:14-21 in your Bible. In His hometown synagogue, Jesus was given the honor of reading from the prophet Isaiah. Then, Jesus declared that the text He had just read was about Him. Delve into verses 18-19.

“The Spirit of the Lord is on Me,

because He has anointed Me

to preach good news to the poor.

He has sent Me

to proclaim freedom to the captives

and recovery of sight to the blind,

to set free the oppressed,

to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

—Luke 4:18-19

Jesus’ declared that He is the Lord’s prophet, empowered by the Holy Spirit.

In the original Isaiah passage, this was the news that God was going to deliver the Jews from captivity in Babylon. How did Jesus accomplish these things in His earthly ministry? List a few examples.

How does sin oppress us? How did Jesus free us from that oppression?

Jesus was declaring that in Him, God was offering His grace and favor to the world. The people would have understood that Jesus was claiming to be the Messiah. Why would it have been hard for them to accept that the boy they’d watch grow up was the Messiah? Explain.


Jesus’ words to His parents in the temple when He was 12 show that He had understood His mission and purpose for a long time. But now, it was time to make it public.

Jesus knew why He had come and what God was calling Him to do. He understood His purpose. God has a purpose for your life, too: to know Him and play an active role in building His kingdom. What steps will you take to invest in that purpose this week? Record two in your journal.

Jesus was completely focused on obedience to His Father. Are you? What changes need to happen in your life so you can be? What affect would this kind of obedience have on your witness?

For further study, read Isaiah 61:1-4.

Behind the Story

Jesus stopped reading from Isaiah 61 in the middle of verse 2, ending the reading at the phrase “to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Why did He stop there? Because this is exactly what His preaching proclaimed! The time had come for God’s grace to reveal itself in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah. The very next phrase in Isaiah 61:2 “and the day of our God’s vengeance” refers to the second coming of Christ and His judgment of the world. So, Jesus read the part of Isaiah that was being fulfilled then, but held off on the part that would not be fulfilled until the time of judgment.

The Point

Jesus declared that He was the Messiah and that He would accomplish what God had planned for Him.

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Mad Gab Answers from the Newsletter-Starring Ron Springs

Posted by Karah

We had a really fun time making these Mad Gabs for you, and we hope that you all had a fun time trying to figure them out! Here are the answers!

sick tea sec tent some her-(62nd Summer)
kin go fudge uncle-(King of The Jungle)
Knit bowl nook Eye scream par lore-(Nibble Nook Ice Cream Parlor)
bar sand star sand on her bands-(Bars and Stars and Honor Bands)
The leigh pave eight hand jive ants wing– (The Leap of Faith and Giant Swing)
purse safer rinse-(Perseverance)
Rat tails neck mound hand of her knight-(Rattlesnake Mountain Overnight)
Chair rock he sand chipper was-(Cherokees and Chippewas)

Check out this video of Ron trying to figure out the answers to one of the Mad Gabs.

Let us know if you all came up with any fun Mad Gabs of your own!

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