By Anna Shanazarian
Looking back at our day, we were all in awe of God’s constant work and presence within our group and throughout the events in the day. We started the day with the utmost excitement but also feeling unsure about what to expect. We were all ready to finally go to Hankavan and be surrounded by over a 150 kids at camp Shoghik. Before our final destination however, we visited a couple different places and experienced some more of God’s blessings.
We had the opportunity to visit Dalma Mall, experience the beauty of God’s creation at Tzakhkadzor, and also have a true taste of Armenia by having some sweet Armenian road-side watermelons. During these stops we had a wonderful fellowship with the group, as we grew even closer and more united. We cheered each other on, helped and encouraged one another during a game of bowling, or reached out and were there to help one another if anything went wrong in the bus or out in the nature, and even more importantly, came together at different times during the day to pray for one another and for God’s will to be done at camp. It definitely felt like the group was in the right spirit and ready to go to camp!
As we got closer to camp we all felt more and more excited. It felt like home! Even the entrance of the camp site was a reminder of our own Camp Arev most of us grew up going to. As the bus was driving through the road, kids started to run towards us, interested to see who we were and what we were doing there. From the first second we received warm welcomes from all the kids and the camp directors. All the girls were so hospitable and as soon as they heard that some of us will be staying in their room, they held on to our hands and with the biggest smiles led us to our room making sure we had everything we needed and offering to help set up our beds and other belongings.
We were so excited to be there. By the end of the day we had already learned so much! The program was very well prepared and organized, the counselors were enthusiastic and showed love to the kids as if they were their own, but more than anything we were touched by the utmost enthusiasm and genuine joy everyone had during worship. We had never seen a group of kids sing so loudly and beautifully, and to know that those songs were being sung for Jesus, especially at a time period where majority of the people do not know Christ, truly warmed our hearts.
This day, these kids, and the unity and love in our own group has left an everlasting impact on all of us, reminding us of the joy and peace we can have by trusting the Lord, loving Him and living our lives for Him.
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” (Colossians 3:23 ESV)