Sunday, June 6, 2010

Training...Blood, Sweat, and Blackberry Bushes

The first four days of all staff training consisted of training as a river guide for white water rafting. In my first hour on the river, before I ever even had a guide stick in my hand, I watched a guide steer her raft through a class three rapid, disappear in the white water and come back up bleeding profusely from the mouth. At some point she had hit her chin on something and impacted two of her top teeth into her jaw. Day one on the river began with a slight medical emergency. The next day I got tossed from the raft and caught in an eddy (a backwards current along the bank of the river) and had to hike out of it through a bunch of blackberry bushes to the other side of a large boulder in order to regroup with my raft that was about a quarter mile downriver. That is when I knew that i had found myself in the right place for the summer.

So I have been at Kidder for a little over two weeks now, and for a little over two weeks I have been in training. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, I'm loving what I get to do here and it really seems as if a new staff member arrives every day. With a week left of staff training, I'm getting really excited to begin the process of getting to know everyone. Oh, and training at a high adventure camp is not quite what many people think training is. So far I have had the opportunity to play on a ropes course, shoot rifles, learn how to guide a river raft, lead the staff in a personality training, go trap shooting, help repair a paintball field, shoot some archery, teach and co-lead a discussion on living in community, and make somewhere around 45 new friends and remember all of their names...i think.

My job for the summer is primarily going to be hanging out with the guys on staff and helping to take care of any of their spiritual needs, and it has been awesome beginning to get to know the guys who I am working with. I had never met any of these guys before I got here, and I can tell you with confidence that God has something really big planned for all of them as we move throughout the summer. I'm getting really excited for how God is going to use me this summer. I have already been leaning so much about what it means to be intentional with my relationships with people. My position is centered on my relationships with the guys and it has been so awesome being able to invest even a little bit of my time into them.

I can tell that this summer is largely going to be about facing my fears and fighting through my inhibitions. Thus far this has resulted in my first ever bloody nose from jumping off of a thirty five foot cliff into the river, facing my fear of heights by climbing Jacob's ladder (a giant ladder in our ropes course), guiding a raft down intense rapids, and confidently allowing myself to be myself and celebrating the way that God has uniquely designed me. Our God moves in powerful ways.

I have the blessing to be able to live with Craig Thompson the camp's program director for the summer at his house on camp property. I'm sharing a room with Austin, another member of the leadership staff, and it has already been such a blessing to be able share life with him.

I have already been very uplifted and encouraged by the communications I've had with everyone outside of Kidder Creek. If maybe by chance you ever want to send me something, care packages, letters, etc. here are my addresses.

For US Postal Service only:
Kidder Creek Camps
c/o YOUR NAME
PO Box 208
Greenview, CA 96037

For UPS, FedEx, etc...
Kidder Creek Camps
c/o YOUR NAME
2700 S. Kidder Creek Rd.
Etna, CA 96027

I will be at home in San Diego for about 36 hours next weekend to walk in graduation so hopefully I will be seeing many of you then. I love you all and I can't wait to see you all once I return for good.

Scott E. McGhee