Young Lives Day Three: sippy cups, cereal, carnival lights, and love

In some ways, Young Lives camp looks entirely different from Young Life camp. The tables are set with these:


Many of the breakfast Cheerios end up here:


There  are people pushing strollers all over camp:



There are also tricycles, scooters, pedal-cars, and pedal-tractors at every turn. Add to that pack-n-plays, crates of diapers, changing tables, swings, tiny tables and chairs, napping cots, bottles, sippy cups, diaper bags, onesies, baby wipes, building blocks, exer-saucers, and a thousand other things, and it would be easy to assume that Young Lives camp is nothing like Young Life camp.

But that would be a wrong assumption.

Because at Young Lives camp, things like this still happen:

And that leads to this:


A genuine, bonafide, Young Life carnival, which is the perfect way for a young mama to end a wondrous day because¬†– just like every other teen who visits this sacred slice of creation – she has come to experience the best week of her life. And we are going to do our best to give it to her, because that’s what love does.



Legend of the Round Table (Michindoh Post 6)

[This post is sixth of a series in which I reflect on spending a month at camp for Wyldlife (middle schoolers) and YoungLives (teen moms). You can follow by subscribing to this blog below. All posts are categorized as ‘Michindoh 2013’.]

The famous Round Table of Arthurian legend has got nothing on the infamous Round Table of Camp.

In short, we eat at Round Tables. Every meal. Every day. Banquet tables would hold more people. And they could be set up in neat rows.

But we prefer Round Tables. Of 8 people. Set up in free-flowing pods.

Pre-meal Round Tables are nothing to write home about. They would never grace the pages of a slick home and garden mag.

Pre-meal round table (Photo: CKirgiss)

Adding bread and water livens things up a bit and is entirely lovely since the conversations and interactions that take place at the Round Tables are blessed and consecrated by the Bread of Life and the Living Water.

Pre-meal round table, plus bread (Photo: CKirgiss)
Pre-meal round table, plus bread (Photo: CKirgiss)

Feeding everyone at all of the Round Tables is not quite as miraculous as feeding the 5000 – but it surely is as beautiful.

Serving the Round Tables (Photo: CKirgiss)
Serving the Round Tables (Photo: CKirgiss)

The Round Tables are a perfect place to eat with friends, to look at one another face to face, to be part of a circle that is mightier by far than any group of Arthur’s noble knights.

Being at the Round Table (Photo: CKirgiss)

In a world where Round Tables – or any other shaped tables – are becoming more and more rare, the chance to gather around one several times each day is a blessed gift indeed.

If there is any disadvantage to Round Tables, it is only this: half of the people must turn in their chairs…

Round Table entertainment (Photo: CKirgiss)
Round Table entertainment (Photo: CKirgiss)

…in order to see such momentous upfront events as…

Baby and Baby's Playtime (Photo: CKirgiss)
Baby and Baby’s Playtime (Photo: CKirgiss)

…Baby and Baby blowing Coco-Puffs. Out of their noses. Into buckets. For points.

You might not be surprised to hear that Baby won (with 12) while Baby lost (with 8).

But at the Round Tables, there are no losers. Ever. Each and every middle-schooler circled around each and every meal is loved. Listened to. Cared for. Encouraged. Believed in. Prayed for. Delighted in. And so much more.

The shape of the table matters indeed.

But more importantly:

The hearts of the people eating around the table matter beyond measure.

Each and every one.