I’d heard about Jesus plenty while growing up, but my real Christian community was at LLYC.
I grew up in Chicago (so everyone called me a Yankee) and came down to Texas for LLYC every summer since I was five years old. Camp was absolutely the best two weeks of my life every summer—sometimes three weeks if there was an opening for Jam Session and I got to stay.
I met some amazing friends whom I got to see every summer. I always lost my voice chanting and singing, and like so many others, I always thought my counselors were the greatest people on the planet.
Through LLYC, I met Jesus. I saw Christians living out joyful lives. I heard about the love of God. I read the Bible in cabin times. But the greatest moment of them all was when I was 13 years old, and I heard the Cross Talk.
I don’t remember the specific way that the importance and meaning of the cross was presented that night, but I vividly remember the quiet time afterward. I sat and looked up at the clear Hill Country sky, all the countless stars, the clouds of the Milky Way. I heard, felt, and knew, so clearly in my heart, that God was saying to me: “This is true.”
All that I’d heard about Jesus was true. I was separated from God because of my sin. God loved me so much that He made a way through Jesus. Jesus died on the cross and bore my sins in order to bring me back into a right relationship with the Father. This was the greatest display of love there ever could be. God opened my eyes that night. He rescued me from myself. Of course I love Laity for all of the family history and memories I have there, and for the incredible fun and amazing people, too, but the greatest part about that place for me is the God who opened my eyes to Jesus as I sat on a rock beneath a star-filled sky.