Boot Camp 1 Day 7

It’s been almost 48 hours since Boot Camp 1 campers left the Precept Ministries Campus here in Chattanooga, TN. Yesterday we spent time as a staff writing out praises to the Lord and then spent time in prayer together thanking Him for His work in the lives of the students.  We’re also praying for the campers as they head back home, to another camp, or even on a mission trip.

In the last main session Brooke read a letter that was written to the Boot camp 1 Campers. This letter describes out heart for them as they head home. These students needs our prayers…they need your prayers! We’ll post the letter here so you can read through it and pray for the campers from Boot Camp 1.

 

June 19, 2013

Dear Boot Campers,

Before you ever stepped foot onto this campus – in fact a year and a half before you came here – we were laboring hard in prayer for you. And I’ll be honest, planning for this camp hasn’t been easy; but we have seen the Lord work in miraculous ways over the past few months. God wanted you here. We believe that. It’s obvious because we have watched Him change you, soften your heart, open your eyes to see Him clearly … and as we have prayed … you met with Him!

Preparing for this study demanded many hours of poring through the Scriptures as we prayed for you. We were begging the Lord to give you hearts that would be willing to hear this hard TRUTH. You now know that He has answered this prayer. I am brimming with thankfulness! You can’t imagine the joy and fun your classroom teachers and table leaders have received as we watched the Lord move mountains in your hearts. He has changed your mind about marriage and revealed more of Himself to you. We have all shed tears this week … tears of joy!

But I have one last plea as you leave today. As you drive out of that gate and return to the life you left, I want you to be prepared. There is a battle that is raging and I want you to go to battle READY, ready to wage war for the sake of Christ, ready to share His truth with a society that wants you to believe their lies. That is why I’ve written you this letter … I want you to be strong and fight hard!

And listen: as you leave and settle back into real life, you may be tempted to believe that there is no man or woman on earth that matches up with what the Word of God call a model man/woman. You may be tempted to think that you are the only one left. You may begin to rationalize things and find yourself settling for less than God’s best. These and MANY MORE lies will be presented to you. But remember – REMEMBER – what you learned in God’s Word. The TRUTH is that He is sovereign and He knows what is best. He never forgets you! It is worth the wait! Remember Genesis 1 & 2 … God saw all creation and knew that it was NOT good for man to be alone. He MADE a helper suitable for Adam and brought her to him. He will do the same for you. It is not up to you to do the work searching and looking. SEEK first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you! HIS KINGDOM is what you seek … as you trust Him to bring you the marriage He has planned for you.

I’m sure that some of you have been plagued with guilt and shame this week because you have already messed up. You will drive off campus and be tempted to think that you’ve made too many mistakes, that you are unworthy of God’s best, or that you must settle because all you are is damaged goods. That is a lie, because God’s reality is that His grace covers you. Remember what you learned in Corinthians this week: before Christ came into your life, you were unrighteous and that you couldn’t inherit the kingdom of God. BUT, because of Christ Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit, you have been WASHED! You have been SANCTIFIED! You have been JUSTIFIED! Confess your sins to the Lord and you can leave this camp CLEAN in the name of Christ Jesus! Leave here knowing that the sacrifice of Christ and the love of the Father has covered your sin and you can walk away a NEW CREATION. You are no longer damaged goods. You are His child and He has a plan for you! Seek Him! Seek Him!

Maybe this week you’re leaving here and thinking that this idea of marriage seems too hard, it’s too much work and not worth the effort. If you maintain this attitude, your heart may grow hard and you’ll be tempted to give up, not realizing that God through Christ gives you everything you need to fulfill His plan for marriage. You’ve seen what His reality is this week: that Christ is the ultimate example of leadership for you guys … and He shows us ladies how beautiful the role of submission is for us! But how does that work out in real life? How do you live out this reality? I want you to know that in 2 Peter God tells us He has given us EVERYTHING pertaining to life and godliness … EVERYTHING. All you need to prepare for a biblical marriage is found in God, and as you study His Word and as you seek Him for direction He will guide you! And like I said before … there is GRACE for when you mess up … grace for when you get it wrong … and grace to show you how to do it right!

Maybe all your life you have struggled with feeling like you don’t fit in. This has left you feeling unlovable … and now you find yourself unable to imagine yourself loving someone in the ways described on Day 5. If you believe this, you will begin to shut yourself off from others while you keep building up walls to keep them out. God’s reality tells you that He is love … He is your creator … Psalm 139 tells us that He formed you in your mother’s womb … that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. He saw your unformed substance. If things have happened to you or you’ve done things that make you feel unlovable, you too can remember that you’ve been washed, you’ve been sanctified, and you’ve been justified in the name of Christ Jesus and by the power of the Holy Spirit.

This week we took a good hard look at society’s lies. As soon as you step foot off this campus, society will begin to push their beliefs on you. Sometimes it feels like their voice is louder than the realities we studied in God’s Word this week. If you’re not careful, you’ll begin to listen to them and act on their lies. Before you even realize it you’ll begin to question if God really knows what He is talking about. If you begin to believe these lies and give in to the doubts, you’ll find yourself compromising His truth to do whatever feels right in the moment. Reality: God, the one who created you, is who wrote the book on love, marriage, and sexuality. Classroom 1 girls spent time worshipping Him the other night for who He is. They told me that this Creator is gracious, faithful, merciful, forgiving, holy, understanding, sacrificial, humble, perfect, devoted, omnipresent, everlasting, unchanging, promise keeping. They kept calling out his characteristics and we realized that He is also… jealous, just, steadfast, provider of good things, loving, sovereign, tender, protecting, personal, truthful, trustworthy, caring, all knowing, sustaining, all-powerful, rock, fortress, prince of peace, delivering, saving, redeeming, friend. The Creator of marriage has a plan, and all these words describe Him. Remember…His plan is perfect! He created them male and female in His image. I pray that when society’s lies come at you, that you will remember this God and His character, and that you will desire to reflect His image more than you desire to be accepted by society. Press on campers! Wait for Him, don’t give up! What He says is true!

 

When you guys arrived here, your perception of sex may have been warped. And when you leave here, the lies will begin to surface again. Usually our views of sex are warped in two different extremes: you’ll be tempted to be obsessed with sex or you’ll be disgusted by it. Even in God’s design of sex, He has a plan. He has a way that is best for you. His design for sex wasn’t put in place to hold you back or stifle you. His design is to protect you! Paul tells you in 1 Thessalonians 4:

3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, 5 not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; 6 and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in the matter because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned you. 7 For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification.8 So, he who rejects this is not rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you.

God’s intention is for you to enjoy sex in the way He designed! It’s not gross, it’s not shameful, it’s nothing to be embarrassed about IF you “follow the manufacturer’s instructions.”

 

Ultimately, when you drive out the gates of this ministry, life will get busy. You’ll forget how the time in God’s Word this week impacted you. As you begin to chop away time alone with Him, you will begin to feel guilty for not spending more time with Him. And before you know it, you’ll start compromising your actions. You’ll be weak and the lies will seem like truth. You’ll begin to wonder what is missing and you’ll look back to camp and wish you could just have what you had here EVERYDAY. I realize some of you won’t have the community you have here once you return home. I know some of you feel alone and don’t have a lot of friends who believe what you believe.  You’ll begin to get lazy and care less and less about God and His word. The next thing you know you will find yourself filling out your application for Boot Camp 2014 and telling us that this year hasn’t been what you wanted it to be when you left. You’ll tell us about how you had all these plans to stay in the Word and even lead your friends in a study … but that the time had slipped away. So, you’ll want to come back to Boot Camp to reawaken what has gone to sleep over the year. Time will have been wasted!

What you had here at camp doesn’t have to stop when you drive out the gate. Remember, TIME. IS. SHORT. You don’t have time to waste. You may not have this kind of community back home … but you do have the Word of God. And in that book, the Lord gives you EVERYTHING you need. Remember what I told you the first night? This Word is living and active … these are the very words of God your Creator…Your heavenly Father! In this book, you don’t just find guidelines, but you meet with your Maker face to face. Don’t neglect your time with Him! Each day, no matter how crazy your schedule is, carve out time for Him. I promise you … it’s worth it! I promise that if you determine to sacrifice something earthly for the eternal you won’t ever be the same.

Each morning when you wake, remember…this is not your home! You seek a heavenly kingdom! You can turn to His Word and find examples from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Joshua, and Moses. These men, though not perfect, had faith. As you learn from them, your heart will be strengthened, your faith will grow, and like them, you too will choose to do the crazy things that they did because you will know it’s not YOU who does them…its God! He will give you the strength and power you need to trust His reality and fight all the lies that plague you daily!

Boot Campers, we love you! Know that we will be fighting this battle alongside you in the strength the Lord provides. We are here for you and we pray that as you leave this place you will be strong in the Lord. That He will be what you seek! That as you seek Him you will see your life and the lives of those around you transformed!! It’s a battle…but His Word, His reality tells us that the Victory belongs to the Lamb! He is your Groom…You are His bride! Listen to this reality…

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, 4 and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”

5 And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He *said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.” 6 Then He said to me, “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. 7 He who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son.

 

 

 

 

12 “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” 14 Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter by the gates into the city. 15 Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying.16 “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.” 17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.

Come boot campers! Come and prepare for the feast! Time is short, don’t delay…seek Him and His Kingdom above all else! I promise that you won’t regret it!

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,

Boot Campers, look to Christ! Look to that Victory! Fight hard!

Know we are praying for you!

Brooke Ritterbush & The Boot Camp 2013 Staff

 

 

~Transform Team

 

 

 

 

Foundations

Youth groups coming to learn how to study God’s Word inductively through Transform Student Ministries,

 worldview training from IMPACT360, as well as serving within the community of Chattanooga! Join us!

 

 

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