October 1, 2009
Taking youth and children to camp is one of the highlights during the summer, both for me and for the youth that we take. This summer we had the opportunity to take three youth and five kids to summer camp at Morning Star Ranch in Florence, KS. It is a World Impact camp that we go to every summer.
The last week of the summer program was the children’s week at camp. Three of the five kids who went were siblings. About an hour into the drive to camp, we were driving by a field full of cows and Darren, who is 10 years old, asked what we were driving by. It was at that moment that I realized that Darren had never before seen a cow in real life.
After talking with Darren a little more, he went on to tell me that he has never even been outside St. Louis city limits. So, to see a cow in person and not just on the television was a huge deal to him and his siblings. His reaction to every cow that we saw on our seven hour trip was “OOH, look at the cows”. I wish you could have seen the excitement on his face and in his voice. After we arrived at camp, which is also a ranch, he saw many different animals for the first time. I think the funniest reaction was when he saw a frog for the first time. The frog was jumping around and got real close to him—and I am sure you can imagine it was another priceless moment.
At the end of the week, we always stop on our way home for an evening meal at a McDonald’s. Each kid got a drink and as we were at the soda fountain to get our drinks, I noticed him struggling to figure out how to work the lever. I did not think too much of it and I showed him how to get a drink from the soda fountain. I then asked him if he had been to a McDonald’s before. His response floored me. In Darren’s 10 years of life, his family has not had the means to ever take him to a McDonald’s.
After we arrived back in St. Louis, Adria asked Darren what his favorite part of camp was. Darren’s classic response was “the WHOLE thing was my favorite part”. It was in that moment that God allowed me to see just what this trip had meant to Darren. I cannot put in to words what an honor it was to be a part of that experience for him.
I relay this letter to you because you are a part of this. Because you have sent Adria and I through your prayers and support you make it possible for us to love Darren and his family in a way that they have never experienced. You may not be right here with us, but you have sent us and we are representing you in our ministry together in St. Louis. Keep praying for Darren and his family. They are involved in a great local church and God has great plans for them. All glory to the King of Kings!
Grace and Peace,
Andrew & Adria Medlen