My son just came home from Hume Lake. If you’re wondering what Hume Lake is, well, it is a Christian camp near Fresno, California. Teenagers from all over the nation go to Hume to listen to inspirational speakers and awesome music. Clay came home tired and full of stories. Campers get to participate in all kinds of great activities including everything from obstacle courses to relay races to swimming. There’s even a bike-jumping contest where campers can ride a ramp into a lake. Crazy! They even have mochas and lattes at this Hume place.

Clay also shared about singing every day, Christian dramas, and live bands. He came back so happy and at peace. The gratefulness was gushing out of him. To close the week out, they gather for a Fun Friday photo session. Instagram mania!IMG_7757

This got me to thinking. What is it about Hume Lake or any type of family camp that helps us regenerate? Simply put, during vacations like these, we take time off from various distractions. Students at Hume Lake aren’t allowed to use their phones and there is no signal up in the woods. Add to that, there is no television or gaming. At first, this is an adjustment, but after a while, it’s refreshing to be separated from social and other types of media. When we don’t have to spend time checking our messages or watching television, we tend to reach out in other social ways. This leads me to my second point—relationships.

Clay came back with so many stories about new friendships formed, adventures, and times of meditation with God. Relationships are at the heart of family camp experiences like this one. Relationship opportunities abound when the distractions are removed because we see the deep need we all have for intimacy with God and with our peers.

Thirdly, camps like Hume Lake put a focus on spiritual renewal. At times, we need to separate ourselves in order to reestablish devotional routines and hear from our Heavenly Father. Jesus also saw the need to get away from the distractions and get centered.

Luke 5:16- But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.

My takeaway from Clay’s week at Hume is that I need to be more proactive in planning relationship-building experiences. The focus should be recreation and bonding, with a little entertainment. I also need to learn to regulate social media within my family. All that’s left to do now is plan a family outing.