Sophomore Year… High School… Camp Cowen… As I did every year, I sat next to my camp girl friend… because after all, doesn’t every freshman boy go to camp for the ladies? I listened to a speaker named Rob Ely talk about why Jesus should matter to me… a popular, All-American kid with a bright future and a clean record. He spoke about this God who rescued every one of us through the person of Jesus. He spoke about the love and unmerited, undeserved grace of Jesus for the ENTIRE world - all for the sake of restoring every person… as his beloved!
As Rob spoke that night, I felt something strange begin to happen. I let go of my camp girlfriend’s hand. Scenes of my life began to rerun in my mind, but rather than disregarding them, I decided to feel them.
On that night, the very hearing of being called a beloved child of God so moved my heart and renewed my weary soul that I did not care so much about the girl sitting next to me or the buddies from my cabin when I got up, walked to Rob, and accepted the love of Jesus for me.