In my last blog on Life Changing Commitments, I shared about the call from Terry Thomas to tell us about his son’s commitment to Christ. Because Tyler’s camp experiences had contributed to his understanding of the gospel, I asked if we might share his story. His dad sent me this note:
Jon relayed the request about including Tyler’s story in your blog. We discussed it with Tyler and he said it would be OK with him to write. We are excited that you made the request.
Now, from my perspective, these two events played a very important role in his coming to understand his need for Salvation. He wanted to go to these places with me. The leadership from the WMU as well as other churches provided Tyler with examples of people willing to spend time and energy with him and other children. Time and attention go a long way with boys and girls.
Our first Courage event, Tyler was able to see Chris Clark. He had studied about Chris in Children In Action.
Our first camp, Caleb Hetrick was his cabin counselor. Caleb was a fellow Homeschooler which made a connection with Tyler. The next two Courage events, Caleb was there and made a big deal about seeing Tyler.
This year at camp, Lucas Young was Tyler’s cabin counselor and connected with Tyler and his guitar. In fact, they played together one night in the cabin. He wrote out the chords for Tyler to play the camp songs.
Showing the Jesus film this year sparked an intense interest for Tyler. We watched the film at home and then walked through the plan of salvation multiple times over the course of a few weeks before he made his decision.
I give you all this background to encourage you and your staff to continue investing time and energy into these kids. Emphasize connecting personally. All of us come to understand the meaning of salvation through the personal witness of others. The Lord used the camps to touch Tyler’s life. If you ask him, he is probably going to say swimming was his favorite part. I assure you he got much more.
Thanks, Terry, for this note. To all missions leaders, Sunday School teachers, choir directors, and others in our churches who work with preschoolers, children, and youth – THANK YOU! Please let Tyler’s story be an encouragement to you to keep on investing in the children and youth in your community and church. Keep sharing the gospel. When you lay a solid foundation for growing faith, the impact will be felt for years to come and touch others as well.