Saturday, August 11, 2007

Authority at Camp

During the week of camp, one of the difficulties I had actually anticipated was dealing with authority. Mind you, the people running the camp, and most of the other sub-leaders and counselors, are my friends, and I’ve known them a long time. I know how they function, and typically understand them pretty well. But whenever you’re in a position of authority and also under authority, things can get confusing.

I don’t want to admit that I’m a leader. I prefer the timidity I described earlier, and decision making for other people is hard work. But if something isn’t being done well, I’d rather do it myself. And if my instructions go against what I think is best, you may imagine I have a struggle making the authoritative instructions preeminent. My personality is independent.

Nothing really big happened, but sufficient conflicts were visible that for the older girls in my cabin, I hoped they got a good example of what it means to be grown up, with your own rights and responsibilities, and to still submit. An almost-out-of-the-house teenager needs to learn these things. So it was nice to be a little transparent with the older girls, and tell them that I disagreed with some decisions, but then they could see I still followed them.

My only big issue was on devotions. Counselors were instructed to prepare a devotional time for each night. We were also encouraged to be connecting with those in our cabins and focusing on their spiritual growth. So when a couple nights the schedule got adjusted enough that I wasn’t doing devotions with my cabin, it was really hard to follow the new schedule. Every other time I had a chance to talk with my girls about spiritual things was just that – chance (well, in the Christian sort of sense). Evening devotions were the scheduled time where they all had to be listening, and they liked it, liked the discussions, I think. They needed to debrief from their day.

I wouldn’t say the authorities were wrong in changing the schedule. It wasn’t sinful, and they didn’t mean to make problems. They were doing as they thought was best, and since they were the leaders, that was their responsibility. I just chafed under different priorities. It doesn’t mean I’m not going back!

To God be all glory.

No comments: