“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast, and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!” Isaiah 49:15 (NIV)”
“Why doesn’t she love me?”
He was just eight years old, a sad, angry little boy sitting on the edge of the bunk. The cabin leaders were at a loss. How could they answer such a question?
Jeffrey’s reality was a broken home, devoid of parental love. He felt rejected, and that rejection played out in a volatile temper during his first week of Bible camp. The emotions boiled over and he lashed out; once the anger subsided, he dissolved in tears.
This is not uncommon; it was not camp that set him off but a larger situation beyond any child’s comprehension.
A heart-breaking moment. And yet, there was hope.
As the cabin leaders spoke into Jeffrey’s life that week, showing him love and understanding, he began to change.
With their help, he discovered Isaiah 49:15, “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast, and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!”
Jeffrey circled the verse in his Bible; he added the words “Jeffrey” and “God” in big, bold letters. His leaders walked him through what it meant to experience Jesus’ deep, consistent love in a very personal way.
And later that week, Jeffrey asked Jesus into his life as Lord and Savior.
The changes were immediate. At an archery activity, the leader asked if anyone would like to pray. Jeffrey replied, “Well, I’m a Christian now, so I think I should pray!” After camp, Jeffrey’s leaders worked hard to stay in touch so he would have opportunity to connect with a church and grow in his faith.
Seeing the fruit that comes out of these difficult situations is one of the greatest joys of camp ministry. It’s why we do what we do! We can’t wait to see what God does in this young boy’s life, and in the lives of countless other children and youth just like him.
(*Based on a true story shared by a One Hope Canada missionary. Name has been changed.)
Jeffrey’s story is part of One Hope Canada’s Spring Appeal. To see more on how you can get involved in supporting camp ministry and children just like Jeffrey, visit our Spring Appeal page.