Friday, July 16, 2010

Unleash The Power

I always hate myself for waiting this long to write about important things like camp, but there literally hasn't been time. I feel like the next few posts have just been looming over my head. So we are going to back all the way up to when I last posted, saying I would only be gone one week and was leaving for Athens that day.

On the way to Athens I got a call from Jennifer telling me she needed me for week 2. How long had I been praying for that very phone call?! I was immediately hit with a huge wave of really mixed emotions. I had been praying for this for weeks. I felt so sure that that is where God wanted me to be that I had packed for 2 weeks anyway. But I had another bag with me. That bag was full of cute beachy clothes and bathing suits and was fully prepared to spend a long weekend with Cosbie and his family at the beach after week 1. Now that I was working week 2, I wouldn't get to see him for about 3 weeks. I didn't know what to feel. I was ecstatic about spending 2 weeks at Epworth and so sad about not seeing Cosbie for so long. (don't judge me. it's just the truth.) The conversation that took place with him that night really highlighted my dependence on other people for affirmation and left me unsatisfied.

I am thankful for a 6 hour car ride with Cissie and Lindsey to talk about what God was doing and how I felt about it and such. They are such precious friends who just speak Truth, whether you want to hear it or not. I love that about them.

Training started just like every other year: competition, dinner, training, testimonies. It's always interesting to see which direction our testimonies are going to take. Summing up 21+ years of our lives is always difficult. No matter how many years we work together, all of our stories tend to lean toward a different direction and focus than the year before depending on where we are in life. This year mine leaned toward self-image, self-worth, and approval. As I was talking, I started to realize how much I still look for that approval from others. Even while I was telling my story I was worrying about it. I had no idea I was such a captive to that... desire, which I saw as a need. Galatians 1:10 says, "am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? or am I trying to please men? if I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ." ouch. That was me. I was living in sin and didn't even realize it. I know that it is natural, especially as women, to be concerned about what other people think at times, but it was consuming my thoughts and my life. To even admit how much I thought about it would be slightly embarrassing to be honest. Linds and I talked about it a lot that night and just prayed for freedom to come throughout the week.

Monday rolled around and I finally got to meet the first group of girls that I had been praying about for a year. Getting that roster is always the best. They aren't just girls you pray for anymore, they have names and stories. I love working the name tag station in registration because I get to talk to most of the kids and get to meet most of the girls in my huddle that way. I was so blessed to have an amazing group of junior and senior girls who love the Lord so much. They were incredible competitive and awesome on the competition field, sweet as can be, and so willing and eager to learn about the Word of God. They were seriously the kind of huddle that every huddle leader dreams of. Brittany, Maddie, Michelle, Cortney, Megan, Jessica (who was also in my huddle last year), Rachel, Brooke, Elizabeth, and Tara very quickly had, and will always have, a special place in my heart and I love them so much. Wednesday night we went on the prayer walk where they all shared struggles and prayed for each other. It was so powerful and so awesome to see them come together and bond. When we got back to the cabin that night, they pointed out that they had prayed for each other but not for me and asked if they could pray for me. I didn't even know what to say. I was so humbled. They are so precious and I am so thankful to have been a part of their lives for even just one short week.

Let's be honest, sometimes church camp skits can be a little cheesy. One thing I love about this camp is we don't do the cheese. We wanted to do some new ones this year, and, of course, they were awesome. Every year I secretly try to avoid being in them, but always end up in a couple somehow. I don't really love being on stage for everyone to see me, but it is always a blessing to be a part of. Wednesday night's skit was to Audience of One by Big Daddy Weave. I have always loved this song and know every word, but all of a sudden it was different. As I watched Amy give Jesus her worries and struggles and learn what it means to live completely for Him and His glory, I saw myself in those shoes- struggling to stop worrying about what others think and learn what it means to have His approval. The skit ended and worship began and tears were still streaming down my face. It was like I was having this conversation with God about what I was feeling and why I thought I needed that approval. Then it was like God just said, "Caitlin, you have been believing that I can free you from this but you won't let Me. just let go and give me control." Surrender. That's all I had to do. I felt like the weight of the world had been lifted off my shoulders. And that's how it's been ever since. It's a conscious effort and it's hard, but so much better. I am learning to truth my discernment and my own abilities to make decisions and be confident in them and in who I am in Christ. I am free! I have never felt so free before in my life, and it's amazing.

Every year I go to camp thinking that this is all about the girls (which most of it is) and underestimating what God is going to do in my life. He changed my life. He showed me life to the fullest in a way I didn't know existed. "through You the blind will see, through You the mute will sing, through You the dead will rise, through You all hearts will praise, through You the darkness flees, through You my heart screams, 'I am free!'"

I come on my knees
To lay down before You
Bringing all that I am
Longing only to know You
Seeking Your face
And not only Your hand
I find you embracing me
Just as I am

And I lift these songs 
To You and You alone
As I sing to You
In my praises make Your home

To my audience of One
You are Father and You are Son
As Your Spirit flows free
May it find within me
A heart that beats to praise You
And now just to know You more
Has become my great reward
To see Your Kingdom come
And Your will be done
I only desire to be Yours

So what could I bring
To honor Your majesty
What song could I sing
That would move the heart of royalty
And all that I have
Is the life You've given me
So Lord let me live for You
My song of humility

And Lord as the love song 
Of my life is played
I have one desire
To bring glory to Your name!
-Audience of One, Big Daddy Weave

ps- thanks to my wonderful roommate Lindsey for help on the blog makeover :)

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