By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer
WOODWORTH – More than anything, God wants a personal relationship with every person through His Son.
However, many times satan brings about distractions that can hinder that connection from happening. By focusing on Jesus Christ and resisting evil, man can grow in a relationship with God, a heavenly Father. It begins, Andrew Orr said, when a person accepts the free gift of salvation by grace through faith.
“We run so hard that we sometimes lose focus,” Orr said during his message at Kids Camp on Aug. 2. “Some of you have been saved or baptized. When you get up every morning, you forget other people are watching you and you forget to focus on God.
“Some of you are resisting or holding back or don’t know if God can save you,” he continued. “The Bible says He’s the only one who can save you.”
Orr shared such messages of hope found in Christ during the third and final Kids Camp of 2016 at Tall Timbers Baptist Conference Center, which began Aug. 1 and ends today, Aug. 3. Nearly 400 children and adult leaders from 22 churches took part in worship sessions, Bible studies, recreational activities including a ropes course, bazooka ball, archery and basketball, and tracks such as puppets, photography, crafts and sign language.
The theme of the camp was “I Believe,” based on John 5:24. The two previous camps that took place earlier in the summer drew a combined 640 participants and adults leaders from 39 churches.
Since he and his wife, Tracy, began leading Kids Camp in 2000, between 10 and 15 percent of participants have accepted Christ. Orr said the camp at Tall Timbers provides a setting for children and adults to unwind in God’s creation and focus their attention on Him without the distractions of everyday life.
“This is the only time of the year when many people can get away from it all and dive into the Word of God with their peers for a few days,” said Orr, minister of education and outreach at Philadelphia Baptist Church in Deville. “The biggest thing this year is hearing kids talk about not only the benefits of getting away from home but realizing how selfish they are and that it’s not about them. It’s what God has to offer and that we need to focus on Him.”
Seth Carbine of First Baptist Church in Jonesville said a highlight for him was hearing the testimony of some of the 25 youth from Philadelphia Baptist Church who survived a serious bus accident in Florida on the way to church camp in June 2015. The 30-passenger bus left the roadway and hit a tree. Twenty-five riders on that bus were taken to four different area hospitals for treatment, though none had life-threatening injuries.
“I really enjoyed hearing their stories and how God blessed them,” Carbine said. “They reminded us that God still does miracles every day.”
Alana Woods of Northside Baptist Church in Montgomery found comfort in the message the youth gave.
“God can use any kind of setback for good, no matter how bad things are,” Woods said. “The survivors of the wreck reminded me I am safe in God’s arms.”