I was super nervous to go to middle school camp because I had never gone to anything like that where I’d be away from home for a week. The night before I left, I was sitting in the Wendy’s drive-thru with my mom talking about everything I would do over the next few days. But then I got really upset because I was so nervous. My mom said I didn’t have to go, but I knew I had to or I would regret it later. I didn’t sleep at all that night.
On Monday morning, we arrived at camp and I was shocked. I had no idea what to expect outside of what I had seen in movies. As we were setting up our cabin, I was silent. Later, we gathered to learn more about what we’d be doing at camp and had our first group worship session. It was different from anything I had ever done before and I really liked it because I connect a lot with music. It made me stay calm and I looked forward to it every day.
Throughout the week we talked a lot about baptism. I had thought about getting baptized in the past but never followed through. On Wednesday, I talked to Megan, my leader, about what baptism meant and she let me send a long text to my mom explaining that I had never felt so sure about it before. After my leaders gave my mom a call as well, I decided to do it.
I was nervous and shaking all day on Thursday. Other people kept telling me how excited they were for me. I was excited, too, but I was really nervous. After worship that night, I rushed to my cabin to change clothes and then headed to the pool for baptisms. My group was one of the first ones there and I felt better about not being in front of a ton of people, but within 10 minutes pretty much the entire camp had lined the edge of the pool.
All week we had been talking about overcoming fears and staying calm, so I started doing some of the things I had learned: I focused on the five things I could see, five things I could touch and five things I could hear in that moment. Everyone else was so excited but I was just trying to keep a steady breath.
I didn’t cry as I was baptized, but once I got out of the water and my friends started hugging me, I was crying hard and I couldn’t stop. I was just so happy! At the party that night, my hair was dripping wet and I was so excited. I felt like a big weight was lifted off my chest. I felt like I didn’t have anything to worry about and I knew I was in God’s hands. Now, I can’t wait to get back to camp! -Lindsey M.