One night last week at camp the lesson was on forgiveness. Earlier in the day the students were asked to write down the name of someone who they need to forgive or someone who they need to ask forgiveness from. These pieces of paper were then taped to their back. After the lesson that night, which was amazing, the speaker talked of what true forgiveness was and the students could ask someone to take the paper off their back once they had either forgiven or asked for forgiveness.
Since it was camp and we had taken all of their phones from them they had to ask leaders to borrow their phones to make phone calls home. When the night was over I counted the calls that were made on my phone since I had lost count. Ten students had made calls to ask or to give forgiveness. There was such an overwhelming response that later it made me realize that we are probably not teaching or practicing forgiveness as much as we should.
I’m sure a little bit of the hype was students caught up in the moment of a camp high but there was a lot of real raw emotion in the room that night. I totally lost count of the number of students I prayed with. I won’t wait for camp next year to do this exercise with my small group guys I’ll do it again later in the year. It’s a great reminder that if we are going to love people like Jesus did, then we really need to teach and emphasis grace and forgiveness all the time. And as leaders we need to be good examples in this area as well.