DAVIS—Thousands of students gather each week of summer for a great camp experience, one that has enabled countless people to hear from the Lord. The 2014 summer weeks of Falls Creek and CrossTimbers Children’s Mission Adventure Camp are well under way and making a huge impact.
/// FALLS CREEK
Among the many activities, students tried the new zip line, which was built and made possible through an individual donation to Falls Creek, for the first time. Some of those same students are hearing the Gospel for the first time and have responded to God’s life-changing message.
“The theme for Falls Creek 2014 is ‘Drive,’” said Andy Harrison, Falls Creek program director and Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma (BGCO) student ministry specialist. “We will examine the love of Christ. For the believer, commitment to Christ is not driven by fear or the need for restitution, but by His love. It controls us, compels us. It drives us. We are teaching about how the love of Christ reaches us, secures us, drives us, and transforms us.”
Falls Creek is known around the world as a place where life-changing encounters occur. At the time of publication (June 5), 227 decisions had been made, including 100 professions of faith in Christ during the first two days of week one alone.
“I have no idea why Jesus would love someone like me, but His love for us all is truly amazing,” said Scott Watkins, pastor of Terlton, First, who preached during week one.
Camp pastors and bands for the summer weeks include:
• June 2-6 Scott Watkins, pastor, Terlton, First; music, Nick Thurmond
• June 9-13 Clayton King, evangelist; music, Jared Wood
• June 16-20 Mike Keahbone, family ministry pastor, Hoffmantown Church, Albuquerque, N.M.; music, Logan Walter Band
• June 23-27 Stuart Henslee, student pastor, Biltmore Church, Arden, N.C.; music, Walter Band
• June 30-July 4 Hance Dilbeck, pastor, Oklahoma City, Quail Springs; music, Cody Dunbar
• July 7-11 Ed Newton, biblical communicator; music, The Met Collective (Matt Roberson)
• July 14-18 Afshin Ziafat, evangelist; music, Denver & Ced
• July 21-25 Newton; music, Roberson
Another new emphasis this year is the “MyFive” offering, a challenge to all students and sponsors to each give $5 to the Thursday night offering at camp. According to Harrison, of every $5 given, $3 goes to provide scholarship monies for students going on GO Students trips the following summer, and the other $2 goes to support the OneLife Project from the International Mission Board, specifically in East Asia.
Through the new and long-standing activities and its Gospel-centered focus, Falls Creek continues to attract students who can have their lives changed.
Destiny Herrin, a student who came with Del City, Sunnylane Southern, said she has been blessed by her time at Falls Creek.
“God has changed my life in ways that are unimaginable,” she commented. “I like to go up to the prayer garden, and look over the camp; I also like to hang out with friends (between services).”
Another student, Tyree Terry, who came with Oklahoma City, Putnam City, said “This is my third year (coming). When I first came, my friends brought me when I was lost. My relationship with Christ now is amazing.”
In addition to campers and sponsors, visitors may come to the Falls Creek campgrounds for the evening services and other activities. A $3 per day registration is required at the gate for general visitation and the services. A $10 per day registration fee allows visitors to take part in the ropes course and other activities. The evening services also are available for viewing online at http://skopos.org/livestream.
A few miles down the road from Falls Creek is CrossTimbers, a missions adventure camp for children grades three through six. The camp, which moved from McAlester to its present location in Davis just last year, has 800 more students registered for its 10 sessions in 2014 than it did in the year prior.
“There is a high priority on evangelism, Scripture, worship, relationships with camp staff and church sponsors, and opportunities for kids and sponsors to sharpen their skills and prepare to consistently serve God after camp,” said Glenn Barber, CrossTimbers program director and BGCO childhood ministry specialist. “CrossTimbers is a camp designed to reach and equip children.”
CrossTimbers has new features this year, including a swimming pool and added waterfront activities. The camp is based on four days of intentional spiritual investment in a child’s life. According to Barber, day one focuses on evangelism; day two is instruction; on day three, the children are challenged to serve daily, and on day four everything is tied together.
“These children are learning biblical principles for worship, missions, evangelism, and life, all in a safe, fun environment that strengthens relationships,” he emphasized.
CrossTimbers’ Camp pastors for 2014 include:
• Session One: June 2-5
Shane Hall, pastor, Del City, First Southern
• Session Two: June 6-9
Griff Henderson, pastor, Edmond, Waterloo Road
• Session Three: June 11-14:
• Session Four: June 17-20
Blake Gideon, pastor, Edmond, First
• Session Five: June 23-26
Todd Fisher, pastor, Shawnee, Immanuel
• Session Six: June 30-July 3
Randall Jones, pastor, Perry, Kaw Street Chapel
• Session Seven: July 7-10
Mike Conn, family/children’s minister, Madill, First
• Session Eight: July 11-14
Doug Melton, pastor, Oklahoma City, Southern Hills
• Session Nine: July 16-19
Doyle Pryor, pastor, Norman, Bethel
• Session 10: July 21-25 (Pre-Teen Week)
Keith Wiginton, pastor, Claremore, First
During the first session, 78 decisions for Christ were made, including 32 professions of faith. For more information on CrossTimbers, visit www.bgco.org/crosstimbers.
Falls Creek and CrossTimbers each continue to make a unique imprint on the Kingdom of God though the astounding numbers of decisions for Christ. The camps are supported by Oklahoma Baptists’ gifts and through the Cooperative Program.
Be watching for stories, photos and information about these camps in future issues of the Baptist Messenger.