Friday, June 27, 2008

Family Camp

We just came back from a Christian family camping trip. It was a very rewarding and refreshing trip and to be honest one of the best vacations that I have ever had. My kids enjoyed it so much and it really helped us take our minds off the situation that we have in Singapore.

I was very hesitant to push through with this camping trip. With my father-in-law just passing away and my wife being away to attend to this matter in Singapore, I was pretty apprehensive to venture out on a camping trip as a single parent with 2 kids. Never done it before without my lovely wife. My mind is trying to wrap itself around losing a 4th family member and I didn't really know how to cope with being alone with 2 kids in a family camp and deal with meeting other people, making conversations and trying to get to know other people. I just wanted to be at home in my comfort zone where I have full control (at least that's what I think). But somehow, I felt a strong sense of going and it was pretty strong otherwise I could have easily just dismissed it and just stayed at home.

So off we went on Sunday, June22 to the Santa Clara mountains to a place called Mission Springs. As we get nearer and nearer to the place (based on my GPS directions), I was getting more anxious every minute. Weird thoughts kept going through my mind and the urge to turn back was getting stronger. But I stood firm and decided to continue on.

So we arrived at the place and it was just gorgeous... lots of big, tall redwood trees around and a sense of tranquility pervades the place. I felt at peace but I still wasn't comfortable being a single parent out of my comfort zone. We registered and we saw our church friends and got introduced to people from other churches and my kids just couldn't wait to run around and explore the place.

To summarize what happened during the week for me, I met a lot of people, made new friends, started new relationships (hopefully), shared the situation we have in Singapore and took a bit of that load of my chest, got prayed for by my small group, started each day singing praises and worship to the Lord, got blessed by tremendous teachings of Pastor Ron, enjoyed great healthy food (although I missed asian food and had to grab a bite at a chinese restaurant outside of camp), enjoyed the fellowship and tremendous testimonies of other Christian people, shared my testimony to other people, met a lot of new kids because my kids made tons of new friends, spent a lot of time resting because my kids were always out with their new friends, enjoyed wonderful shakes and coffee from the Camp Cafe, got to know our church friends who are attending the camping better, laughed quite a bit with all the funny stories, jokes and performances in the camp, and so forth and so on. As you can see, I really had a great time after a bumpy start the first night when Abby had a very bad case of diaper rash and she was just screaming when I cleaned her up.

But the most important thing of all is that at the end of the trip when we were driving home...I felt the love of God from this camping experience. He said..."cast your burdens upon me, those who are heavily laden, and I will give you rest". And indeed he does...

I am so happy that I got to spend this wonderful week with my kids in a very welcoming and safe environment. I felt bad at the end of it because I kept thinking if only Weiwei is here, she will feel so blessed as well. Now I can't speak for my kids but I know that this trip has a lasting effect on them. And I know that when they have their own family, this will be one of those stories that they will be telling their kids.

No comments: