“ In my first year at Scioto, I told the kids in my cabin that I knew how to do a back flip. At dinner one night, all the kids started chanting: ‘Here’s Jay and how he does a backflip. Come on Jay give us a show and show us how you do your back flip!’ When there’s a hundred middle schoolers chanting something, you have to do it. So I stood up on a table in the dining hall and did a back flip. Then Aaron Cook took me out back and told me that the only place to do a back flip at Scioto Hills is off the diving board.“ Recounts HeartSong tech Jay Bowser. These are the moments in camp that stick with us forever. We might not remember the cabin we stayed in or the food we ate, but we will always remember those crazy counselor moments that make camp what we look forward to at the end of every school year.
Camps like Scioto are different though. Jay puts it well when he says, “The way that Scioto is organized puts a huge emphasis on integrating God and faith into every single part of camp, not just by talking about it. That philosophy has really stuck with me in that there’s no reason to separate the two— life and God things. When you’re in a full time environment like that, the division starts to drift away in your mind.” God isn’t a big, scary giant, eager to snatch the fun out of the hands of His children. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. He is the bringer of joy and thus it is useless to segregate our great memories and our good God. God is the giver of all of our good gifts, all of our fun, all of our crazy camp stories, all of our backflips in the dining hall.
Scioto Hills director, Aaron Cook looks back on 4 summers of ministry with HeartSong. “Camps and conferences at Scioto Hills Christian Camp will never be the same as a result of the influence that HeartSong has had on them. At first glance I was struck by their musical quality, though the memories I have after many years of partnering go far beyond. When I think of HeartSong I think of authentic friendships and partners in Christ-honoring ministry. Every time a team leaves after an event, it feels like part of our staff leaves…and every time a new team arrives it seems like we just pick up where we left off. “ When we are choosing to live our lives with God as a part of everything we do, others take notice. Whether we are on stage, in the cabins, traveling in the vans or out to lunch after church, we pray our hearts and attitudes would shout Christ. As we prepare to embark on summer tour in just one short month, may we daily choose to infuse each choice, each encounter, each silly moment all with Christ, for the glory and honor of His kingdom.