Well, the summer staff has arrived and we are busy preparing for a summer of ministry. What happens during a week of orientation at Big Sky Bible Camp? What kind of training do we do? Most people probably have not given much thought to the preparation that goes into summer camp, so I thought it would be helpful to give you the insider’s view into what takes place at Big Sky Bible Camp orientation:
1) Getting to know one another
Staff unity is of utmost importance for the leadership of Big Sky Bible Camp. I have found that we serve much more effectively with other believers when we know them well. Each staff member goes through a testimony preparation session and shares their testimony around the campfire each evening. There is also countless get to know you questions, etc., that everyone must answer.
2) Spiritual preparation
A primary goal for the leadership at Big Sky is to be investing in the summer staff; being sure they are nourished and challenged in their faith. We begin by placing each summer staff member under the mentorship of a year ‘round staff member. These have proved to be valuable relationships for both parties involved. One of my highlights each summer is my weekly meetings with the summer staff individuals paired with me. We also lead the staff through a book study on a weekly basis. The book chosen for this summer is The Gospel for Real Life by Jerry Bridges.
3) Fun preparation
In case you have not been to Big Sky, there is a lot of fun stuff going here. However, most of those fun things involve risk, so it is important that we thoroughly train our staff. Lifeguard training will begin for those interested as well as high ropes course training. Then there is archery, riflery and the countless other electives that occur at Big Sky. We top off the week on Friday by putting in the rest of our water toys including the giant iceberg!
4) Serious preparation
Risk Management, Child Abuse, Rules and Practices, Tough Issues – sound like fun? With the litigious world we live in, these sessions may not be super interesting, but they are very necessary. We desire each staff member to know how to react in every situation they could encounter.
5) Biblical preparation
Lastly, and perhaps, most importantly, is preparation for teaching Bible lessons. Big Sky staff work hard on curriculum and spend hours this week preparing the summer staff to teach Bible lessons. Big Sky’s theme this summer is “Behold our God,” and the Bible lessons will hit on God as creator, ruler, redeemer and restorer.
Please join us in prayer as we work hard to train our staff in preparation for the hundreds of campers coming our way this summer and know that we do our best to be ready for any and every situation that we may encounter!