Samaritan's Purse

Boys camp provides hands-on skills, spiritual mentorship

August 16th, 2017 / By: Morgan Collier / comments

NEWTON  Churches must shape the young boys of today into the godly leaders of tomorrow. For this reason, around 120 boys entering first through seventh grades gathered at East Texas Baptist Encampment in Newton June 11-15 for the fourth annual Boys Camp.

“It is a life application and skills camp, where there are things from welding, forging, changing tires, mechanical work, wood working, and more that they can carry home with them and start using those skills,” said Jason Glenn, boys camp director and pastor of Call Junction Baptist Church. “We disciple them with life applications so they can relate these things in order to grow in Christ.”

Glenn said the camp was started to grow adult men in churches as leaders by creating opportunities for evangelistic and mentoring relationships to form between the men and boys in their churches. 

“I remember growing up and the mindset I had toward Christian men, and at no fault of their own, they were standoffish,” he said. “A lot of times in my generation, as a kid, we saw ladies taking leadership roles in the churches where men should have been taking that role.”

Alex Rodriguez, a camp counselor, said he enjoys being able to help out and set an example for the boys.

“I like to see these boys form a passion for different life skills while also learning about the love of Jesus Christ,” Rodriguez told the TEXAN.

One memorable spiritual application was taught through the inner workings of a turbo engine, and the devotion was followed by a visual representation of a truck burnout on the basketball court.

The purpose of the turbo engine lesson was to help the boys understand that if Christians crucify the flesh and allow God to give them a clean heart, good things will come out of allowing Christ to change them, Glenn explained.

“Everybody at this camp has the same vision, which is to spread the gospel and the love of Christ with all the students who come,” Glenn said. “Not many camps are going to let you put a truck up on the basketball court and do a burnout, but everybody is working in harmony toward a common goal.”

This year’s camp theme was “Overflow” with the camp verse being Luke 6:45: “A good man produces good out of the good storeroom of his heart. An evil man produces evil out of the evil storeroom, for his mouth speaks from the overflow of the heart.”

“We are learning about the good and bad people of the world and that if you let Jesus into your heart that you will become good,” 11-year-old camper Garret Cruse said.

Glenn said that everything they are working on is to point them to grow and allow Christ to expand inside of them so they can share him with others when they go out into their communities.

“These men that are working with them are godly men, so whether the boys are standing off or they are really working hard, they can be encouraged in whatever way that they need to be ministered to, these men can do so,” he said.