This place makes my heart happy every time I’m there. I never want to leave! I believe I’ve been about five times- two times as a camper and three times as a sponsor.
Like the title suggests, I have narrowed the list down to three reasons I LOVE Southland Christian Camp. It was so difficult to choose just three!
So, before I explain, yes I know that God is omnipresent or everywhere. But at Southland you can FEEL it. There’s such a joy there and everyone’s hearts are open and expecting God to come down in a big way. And He always does! The camp is doing the will of God. Because of that, they have the blessings of God showering over it.
It’s a joy to be able to run away for a week and meet new, like-minded people who love God the same way I do. Every year I come, there is always that same joy of the Lord and I hope and pray that Southland never loses it!
2. The work they do with the teens is incredibly effective.
I’ve gone several times as a camper and a sponsor. I’ve experienced both sides. As a camper, there is hardly a spare moment where you’re not being edified or taught something to further your walk with God.
Southland has a daily devotional booklet they give the campers called, “God and I Time”. Every single day, the kids are given a set time to have their devotions alone with God where they can be honest about where they are in their walk with God. On top of that, they attend morning and evening chapel everyday and an afternoon session called “Principles to Live By” or PLB. So there are many opportunities to hear the gospel and accept Jesus Christ as savior.
Kids are answering God’s call and the camp is working very hard to lead them towards Christ in a way teens can identify with. They play games, make friends, eat great food, AND hear from God. It’s a fantastic balance.
The preaching is specifically aimed at making sure they can understand it and enjoy it at the same time. I have never heard bad or boring preaching at Southland! It’s always enjoyable, yet convicting. Even the toughest kids come out loving the camp and what God has done for them through it.
As a sponsor, I attended twice daily prayer meetings where we did just that- pray! The power of prayer is not underestimated there. Southland is camp full of prayer. Prayers for the campers who are saved, and especially for those that are not. God answers our prayers and the number of teens saved at camp is a testimony of that.
Southland is a camp that embraces the power of prayer for young people and their families. Everyone at camp is rooting for the teen’s spiritual success and one of the best ways they do that is through prayer.
And the last reason, but not the least…
3. Southland equips kids to be able to carry their camp experience into their daily life at home.
Remember when I said that God’s presence is so apparent at camp? The worst feeling in the world is “leaving church without God”. You can’t truly leave without God since he is omnipresent, but you can certainly leave his fellowship.
Southland teaches the kids how to make Christianity a part of their worldview and how to have a personal relationship with God. That way when the dreaded last day of camp rolls around and it’s time to leave, the joy they felt at camp goes with them. The whole message of Southland is, “take the next step in your spiritual walk with God” not, “make your next camp decision that dies on the car ride home”.
If kids aren’t be given the tools and counsel on how to “take God home” with them, then the camp has failed. But that’s not the case with Southland.
Their mission is to help churches raise up godly young people that are close to God and bring others to Him. Southland doesn’t kick them back out into life with no help. They equip them to go back out there and live for God.
Well there you have it! Three reasons I love Southland Christian Camp. If you are a teen that hasn’t been before, or a parent with teens, I highly recommend Southland! It changed my life when I was a camper.
They helped me take my next steps in my own walk with God and they can do the same for you or your teen. But like I said earlier, it’s not because Southland is so great, it’s because God is using them for great things!
Southland has teen camp weeks all summer long. Check out the camp at www.southlandcamp.org to learn more about this amazing ministry! Can’t recommend it enough.