The summer of my tenth grade year Megan Thompson encouraged me to go to Student Council Camp with her at Berry College. I was up to go most anywhere with Megan, so I went. It was a God set-up all the way. I remember the feeling when my foot first hit the ground at Berry. Everything seemed to shimmer, like a lake disturbed. The place, the very grounds seemed alive. There was this motion, this other realmness. I looked around silently for agreement. Had I lost it? Some people seemed totally unaware of it…others betrayed a slight acknowledgement in their eyes and smile.
We did all kinds of team building stuff the first day, it was really fun. I loved the people on my team and our leaders. My roommate was a sweet girl from a county not too far from ours. I liked her. As we lay down to sleep she got her Bible out to read and asked if it was okay for her to keep her lamp on a minute or two. I had started reading through the Bible myself, no one required it, it just seemed a good idea to me. So, I got my own Bible out and started where I had left off. It was somewhere in John. When I began to read, this time, the words leapt off the page at me. It was alive, too. My heart raced…I looked to my roommate quietly reading. She was totally unaware of the earthquake within me. I read on until she reached for her light. Then I made myself close the Bible and try to sleep.
The next night we all had vespers at this old stone chapel. As we were about to enter the air, wind surged..it was if God was pressing, nearly shoving me forward.
The following night Cathy, a friend I’ll write more about later, sang…and shared…and then and things became clearer…And who these people were, so many at least, became clear. The leaders were pretty much all believers…incredible ones for their age. And so many of them were headed to UGA, to my town for the next four years. We became friends that summer and began to write one another…I even went down to visit them at St. Simons Island and to see all that God was doing there to prepare a generation of leaders in his Church, catholic.
Megan and I remained friends throughout high school. She didn’t push me along with God. There were people in place to do that for me now…people she introduced me to at Berry. She watched and loved me and continued to light the way for others to come near. She went off somewhere to college and then off again, I imagine, to serve someone else.