What is it like sharing LLFC with your kids after having spent summers on staff at LLYC?
It is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, blessings in my life to be able to spend time with my kids at LLFC. The first time we went, I felt like I was giving them a gift that only I could give them. It wasn’t something they could buy on a shelf or access via the internet. It was a unique experience that we would have together in the canyon. Time unplugged, focused on God and each other, growing, playing, and resting together.
You live in Albuquerque, NM. Why is it important for you to send your kids to LLYC in central Texas?
Some of my best spiritual growth happened while serving as a counselor and work crew boss at LLYC. I have decided that if I can accomplish nothing else all year long, but I can send them to the best two weeks (or one week at jam session) of their lives at camp, then I will do it. It’s one of the only places on earth where you can step back, get a fresh perspective, and hear God’s voice in a whole new way. I want my kids to experience the fun-loving nature of camp and to have the Christian role models of people who love others and love the Lord. I want them to see that it’s cool to be a Christian and that Christians are real people with real struggles but who can also have fun! I want them to have experiences they can take back to school with them, when times get tough, when they feel like they are the only ones standing strong, and for them to remember their friends and counselors from camp…and to feel like they are not alone. We travel about 660 miles in the car to get to camp. It’s worth every long, hot mile.
Why is being a monthly donor to LLFC a priority for you?
I don’t want anyone to miss out on family camp just because they cannot pay. My heart hurts for any struggling marriages or families…because I have been there… particularly single moms or dads, who are exhausted and need some fun time with their kids. We all need time together to unplug and re-charge. It’s very hard to find dedicated time to just be together, much less the stress of trying to figure out how to pay for a week or a weekend in the canyon. If I can give this to someone, I feel so happy and thankful that I am contributing to the growth of their family. If God will use my donation to bless a family…a mom, a dad, a child who needs restoration, play time, an encouraging Word from a LLFC administrator, then I am honored and humbled that HE will use my resources in that way. I am so thankful to have the honor of giving and to be able to sustain the gift on a monthly basis.
The other reason I give is this: when I was a counselor at LLYC, I was terribly homesick. It was probably against policy, but Kevin Mayne, the Director at the time, graciously allowed me to go home to see my family. He got the camp (or the foundation) to pay for my plane ticket home. I told myself right then and there, if I ever had money, I would repay that act of kindness and then some. I am trying to stay true to that commitment and carry on the acts of kindness that occur in the canyon.
Why is Laity such a special place to you?
I was truly blessed and humbled to meet so many honest, real people who loved God and loved others. They inspired me. I will never be the same because of it!