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  • Writer's pictureKorey Breutzmann

Created To Be

We are loved and accepted by God without question. The fact that God knows our innermost selves is mind-boggling at the very least.

Even when we feel alone and unseen, God sees us and knows us, never leaving our side.

Maybe even more brain-bending is that we need not do anything or prove one single thing to receive God’s free gift of grace.

“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well.” -Psalm 139:14

Our summer camp theme for 2024 is titled “Created To Be.”

Each day during the week, we will be taking a look at scripture to dive deeper into what God has created each beloved person on this earth to be.

A particularly exciting aspect of our 2024 theme is that it matches the theme and theme days of the 2024 ELCA Youth Gathering. Many youth from across the nation and some abroad will be heading to New Orleans for a fantastic, faith-building event along with tens of thousands of their peers.

Our summer theme matches, so that every youth that heads to the gathering, or to camp,

will come home with the same renewed sense and understanding of what God has intended for us to be and how to live.

Let’s take a look at the five days and brief description of what we will be talking about.

FREE: Our freedom is a beautiful gift from God through Jesus. The best thing of all is that everyone receives this gift. We all enter and continue to exist in this world equally loved and treasured by God.

AUTHENTIC: God recognizes and cherishes our true selves. We don’t need to change who we are to fit some person’s or group’s ideal. Our unique talents and gifts join together seamlessly to make up one body of faith.

BRAVE: In a changing world, the Spirit is a constant and encouraging presence. Through the Spirit, we are given bravery and courage to navigate our lives, no matter how small we feel or how seemingly insurmountable the circumstances.

DISCIPLES: When we lean on each other and encourage one another, everyone feels lighter. What would discipleship look like if we were to truly share God’s love. As Jesus tells us, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you”?

DISRUPTIVE: Love for our neighbors can be exhibited in a myriad of ways—some so easy to carry out, we might even do so automatically without giving it much thought. But sometimes showing that love and discipleship can be a bit more challenging. Speaking up in support of another person or group being hurt by unfair rules or situations can be a very powerful way to walk beside our siblings in Christ.

Each of our five days will give us an opportunity to explore more deeply our authentic selves that God has made. We will learn what it means to be siblings in Christ—humans who are brave enough to encourage and stand up for each other, sharing burdens as well as joys. We will grow and learn more about ourselves while listening to and sharing with each other.

Through our time together this summer, let us celebrate and explore who we are truly Created To Be!

As you are getting excited to come to camp this summer, discuss these questions, based on the five themes of the week:

  • God’s gift of grace is free for us and nothing we have to earn. What kinds of things can we do to show God our gratitude for that beautiful gift?

  • What talents or skills do you have that might make you unique? How can you use these gifts to glorify God?

  • When is a time you felt really brave? How did you feel God’s presence in that moment?

  • Loving our neighbors that don’t agree with us can be a difficult task, yet it is what we are called by God to do. How can we love all of our neighbors and not just our friends?

  • Who are some groups of people or individuals that need our help? What can we do to help them and make sure the love of Christ is known to them?

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