23rd to 31st December, 2006
Sabbath 23rd December 2006
Everyone awoke early Sabbath morning to the peaceful sound of the gentle breeze blowing softly through the trees. After a short but inspirational worship, breakfast was served and everyone enjoyed the delicious food that was served up to them. Then visitors started arriving and everyone hurried to get ready to be on time for the Sabbath School.
When everyone had settled themselves on rugs underneath the tall pine trees on the side of a huge unused dam, Sabbath School commenced and was led by the WA Sabbath School leader. Groups of young people and children were made up and went off to study the lesson with their respective groups while Br Campos from Brazil led the adult class. It was a most interesting topic on “Travelling to Worlds Afar”. We discussed the many different options of transport and destinations etc, and looked forward to the time when we can find out what God has prepared for us. No one can even begin to imagine the many wonderful surprises God has in store for those who obey Him. After Sabbath School closed there was a short break where all could exchange greetings and share thoughts on the beautiful creation of God that surrounded us there.
Divine Service commenced, and Br Radu, who had come all the way from Romania to be with us, presented a beautiful sermon entitled “Observing You”, focusing on how God looks at us and is constantly watching out for our welfare 24/7.
A lovely lunch was served and enjoyed by the many people, then time was spent going for walks and enjoying the fresh air before Young People’s Meeting. Young People’s Meeting began mid-afternoon and many different items were presented and enjoyed by all who attended. Dinner was served right after with different kinds of beautiful fruit which was refreshing after the hot day.
A Social Evening began as the sun started to disappear behind the trees and a cool refreshing breeze sprang up. Sisters Daphne Newman and Naomi Thiel held everyone’s attention with activities that included a test to see whether we would attain a passport and visa to Heaven. We found that we could only get there if we had Christ in our hearts. The meeting halted about half way through to spend some moments closing the wonderful Sabbath, then the meeting resumed and continued for a while longer before closing. Everyone received their passports and headed for bed or to their homes for rest.
We thank God for the many blessings He so freely bestows and hope to be there with you all when Christ comes to take us home with Him.
Emily and Shelley Newman
Sunday 24th December 2006
Exercise classes were meant to be taken at 6:00am, but were cancelled at the last minute due to the majority staying up late the night before.
The timekeeper himself had trouble waking up. After many sleep-ins, Timmy Barat was finally replaced by a very noisy but much more effective trumpet— which by the way drove us completely crazy but managed to get us up out of our tents, sending us marching towards the sloping hill where Br John was preparing to take morning worship entitled “Sower, Seed and Soils”.
In summary, he told the story of a man who spent his life searching the world for diamonds, when all along they had been buried in his own backyard. We were reminded that our first work should be done in our own hearts and that it is our privilege to work for the souls of those in our homes and neighbourhood.
After a warm and delicious breakfast, Br Christopher Newman took us for a tour around the farm and gave us some practical pruning lessons. What I found interesting was Br Ben Thiel’s comparison of how both trees and Christians need nourishment and nurture to grow. Trees sense touch, like to be petted and talked to, and even vibrate when you whisper closely to them. It really helps them grow!
Br John continued the farm tour for us by sharing some interesting farming and harvesting lessons. He also shared and fed us some of his nutritious weeds (which can be used in cooking patties) and which have more iron than spinach!
Br John was also inspired to grow his own lavender after hearing about a man who had made and sold his own lavender soap and shampoo products. He had turned it into missionary work by printing messages from the Bible on his products. God blessed his work and his lavender grew into a sweet-smelling multi-million dollar business.
Br John also shared some interesting stories with us and one that I think would be really funny to watch would be seeing him chasing kangaroos and emus. The task (as much fun as it seems) must have been too much of a challenge for him because he bought two big dogs to scare them away instead.
The dogs usually drown the kangaroos in the dam and you can see massive bones that once belonged to kangaroos after being dragged out of the dam. Not long before arriving at camp one of the dogs was attacked and drowned by a kangaroo. It was a sad story but we decided to end our tour on a good note, so we enjoyed some delicious boysenberries before heading back for camp—most of us tired and sunburnt.
Next up was an information session aimed at getting to know one another better. The two main questions on which we based our discussion were:
1) Who are you? And
2) What is the greatest choice, challenge, or change you have had to make or go through?
Some laughed, some cried, as experiences and pastimes were shared—which we all gained encouragement from.
There was much time to socialise in between meetings and there was also dinner which was always enjoyable.
Evening worship was entitled “No Challenge, No Conqueror”, and was taken by Br Jamie Campos from Brazil. He shared with us the reality of the Christian’s growth—comparing it with a teabag. He pointed out that it is only when you add hot water to the teabag that it can produce its flavour. In a similar way Christians who go through hotand fiery trials allow themselves to produce flavour— real character. Without hot water, the teabag is of no use, in the same way the tough challenges, difficult choices and big challenges that we have to make are indispensable to the Christian’s life. We love to live up on the mountain (in our comfort zone) but God knows that it is in the valley that we grow into young conquerors.
Monday 25th December 2006
“Guided Growth” was the subject presented at worship this morning. President Abraham Lincoln, Christ, and the end product of the mustard seed were considered to be worthy examples of the results of guided growth when one is young, small, or just beginning. Christian youth definitely need more guidance than children.
After breakfast, Bro. Ciric took the main meeting in the morning on “Small Beginnings – Great Ends”. It was proven that the best way to begin anything was to, “start small and build up”, rather than the alternative way which was to start big and go bust (or bankrupt). Joseph was the main character used to illustrate the principle of starting small and building up, and encouragement was given to us all to consider and believ that there is no such thing as a small thing.
In the following discussion, evangelical experiences were shared mainly by our overseas workers that were present, in an effort to encourage us lay members to continue to cultivate and increase our outreach efforts to warn souls about the end of the world and their impending doom.
A well thought-out workshop was held in the afternoon. A preselected group of young people had to organise themselves to perform the duties of a Christian family for a specified time period (a couple of hours). They were given money and employment and had to pay bills, buy a house, do cooking and cleaning, care for the young ones and hold morning and evening worship, be hospitable to visitors and strangers, and resist various temptations. Another group of people sat in to observe the family and, at the end of the time period, presented their observations. The main observation of this particular family was that, “they needed to be more organised.”
Evening worship was taken by Bro. Jonathan Tyler from America, on “You’ve Changed”. It was shown that life is all about changing and that without chang there can be no life. A very interesting story was told illustrating the principle and effects of change in our daily lives, as well as proving the existence of it and demonstrating one of its methods. A little Japanese boy was playing with his friends in a pool near the city where he lived during World War II. He dived into the pool just before the first atomic bomb exploded, surfacing a few seconds later. He entered a changed world. His city and friends were destroyed, and devastation was seen all around him. The effect of change in this person’s life could only be imagined by most of us, though in this case, it must also be pitied. A list of influences that can change us for good and bad were also considered.
In all, I thank the Lord for a very educational day.
Tuesday 26th December 2006
Nearly everyone was up early this morning ready for worship, brekkie and then our first tour.
Trying to have worship and breakfast within an hour was a big challenge for most but we all pulled through in the end.
Everyone was in the buses and we were ready to launch, not knowing what adventures were ahead of us. We started with a long but entertaining drive to the 2nd largest climbing tree in WA where we stopped for a short break.
Next we went on a 25 min bushwalk, well most of the partakers took 25 min. Gabriel M and I set ourselves a challenge that we knew we should be able to conquer – our challenge was to make the 25 min bushwalk into an under 10 min bush-run.
So we started, Gabriel was in front slowly pulling away, I should have warned him that bushwalks are bound to have sharp corners, but I’m afraid he found out the hard way – he was running so fast he couldn’t take the approaching corner and flew straight past the corner into the bushes and small trees, I couldn’t stop laughing. After all that running we made the 25 min walk into a 6 min bush-run. Our next stop was the giant tree, around 100 m high and when you get to the top you can see along the top of the forest. When you climb that tree and on the top, feel it swaying you truly realise how small and insignificant we really are in this big world. Thank God Jesus loved us enough to leave His immortal heavenly home to come and pay the ultimate price for our mistakes and sins. Once we finished admiring one of the strongest organisms we all settled down for lunch, except for a few who decided to eat lunch up the tree. After lunch, some enthusiastic young people juggled bottles which turned into a short water fight before heading off again.
Next stop was the caves, and it was very interesting to know that the temperature is constant down there. When the end times come we can all be assured that it won’t get too warm or too cold. It is a bit cold on the skin but nothing clothing can’t fix.
After a long day we arrived at the beach where we realised the inner tyre of one of our buses had gone flat, Ellen had her purse washed out to sea and we were all hungry. In solution to our second problem, all those who could pitched in to give Ellen some money. We then brought out the food and had a good meal followed by evening worship on the beach on the topic “Light in the Storm”. Near the light house, and looking over the troubled waters where the Indian and Southern oceans meet, we learned the importance of having Jesus as the light of our lives, a help in the times of storm. After examination we decided to leave the flat tyre on the bus. Thank God, it got us back to the campground in one piece.
Wednesday 27th December 2006
Everyone woke to a fresh morning. The morning’s worship was conducted by Br. Radu from Romania. Its title was “Relationship Challenges”. He showed the correct way in which to use the speech that was given to us from God. The main point of the worship was that as humans we can do so much good and evil through speech. Following worship everyone sat down to a delicious breakfast prepared by Sr. Naomi Thiel. After breakfast all helped to clean the buses, kitchen and bathrooms. The experience really lived up to the saying that ‘many hands make light work.’
Around 9:30am tour two began. The first stop was at ‘The Old Cheese Shop.’ It displayed a great range of old antiques and souvenirs.
The bus then proceeded on to the heritage town of Balingup. There everyone enjoyed some retail therapy.
Tour two ended on a funny note. Br. Michael Stoyko was being playful with Crawford whilst the bus was in motion. His hat was caught by the wind and flew rapidly out of the bus. Everyone on the bus enjoyed a great laugh watching Br. Michael retrieve his hat some 500m away.
At the arrival back at camp a gourmet lunch awaited everybody. It consisted of Mexican baked potatoes, pasta salad and was complimented by the salad bar.
The afternoon session was an information session based on the topic of marriage. Br. Ciric and Br. Nathan Tyler held the group discussion. It was very rightly explained that there is no one way to have a relationship but there are Godly principles to be followed while conducting them and each one has to make their own experience. A lot of prayer has to be involved in it. People also gave some practical experiences in conducting Godly relationships.
Most people participated young and old. Whereby the older ones told their experiences whilst the younger ones received the advice.
Dinner was next on the list. We enjoyed Banana Cake, Hot Apple Pie, Fruit Salad and Biscuits.Evening worship was taken by Br. Jonathan Tyler entitled “Love Rules”. He went through the differences men and women have in a relationship, showing how men react differently to situations than women. Following worship, photographs were shown of the previous few days of the camp. Everyone enjoyed a trip down memory lane. After the photos it was lights out and bed.
Thursday 28th December 2006
We left camp early this morning and had worship at the historic church in Stratham. The title was the “Enlightened Ones” by Danica Tyler. She talked about how the things of the world look good on the outside, but lose their power – then you need to come back for more.
After worship and a photo session at the church, we went to the two kilometre long jetty, the longest wooden jetty in the Southern Hemisphere! We went for a walk on it, which took 20 minutes one way.
For lunch we went to a wildlife sanctuary where we had opportunity to pat dingoes, kangaroos, rabbits and baby guinea pigs. For lunch we made burgers with patties, lettuce, tomato and cucumber. They were so tasty, I had four sandwiches myself.
After lunch we travelled to the lighthouse at Cape Naturaliste. We learned that each lighthouse in the world has a unique signal. This lighthouse had a flash at 7 seconds and at 3 seconds. The other interesting thing is that the lense never stops turning – if it did, the light house would catch on fire.
The spiritual lesson of the day is that we as Christians are to be like lighthouses, sending out the light of Jesus Christ to all who are in darkness, lost in the pleasure currents of the world. We as lightbearer of truth are to give a unique warning signal to those drifting dangerously away from the shore, where the lighthouse is not seen.
Friday 29th December
The last Friday of the great Western Australia youth camp, the 29th of December began as a lovely, sunny day. To start the day off Christopher Newman took the morning worship called “Powerful Weak Loser”. He centred it mostly on Alexander the Great, who was so mighty, strong, powerful, and could conquer the world but he had no need of God so therefore he wasn’t all that great.
Next was breakfast, which was beautifully prepared as was every other meal by the busy helpers in the kitchen.
Breakfast was followed by the morning meeting taken by Jamie Campos, called “Powerful Loser”. He also talked about Alexander the Great. He pointed out that Alexander conquered the world at such a young age of 21 but he couldn’t conquer his own greedy appetite that finally led to his death.
Next was lunch and then the rest of the day was spent sitting in the shade talking and trying not to get too hot.
Sitting on blankets on a small slope, as the stars slowly popped out, and with the pines gently blowing, the hot day ended and the Sabbath began, opened by Jonathan Tyler. In his evening worship called "Weak Powerful Men”, he spoke about how some of us are weak in the world’s eyes but how we can be powerful men and women if we have God in our lives. He also told about Daniel, Joseph and Jacob, their trials, and how they became powerful through Christ. Then he spoke about William Miller, a young boy who was working on his farm when he was called to become a preacher. William Miller—a farmer boy who didn’t feel he was ready to become a preacher and face so many people, went ahead anyway and from a farmer boy became a powerful preacher.
After this meeting the young people from Melbourne, Queensland, WA, or even further, gathered to have a great big sing-song that finally finished very late.
Sabbath 30th December 2006
Awakened to the wonderful sounds of bells, car horns and a trumpet, meant that sleep, something most precious to us all, once again had come to an end.
Breakfast was enjoyed by all those who got up nice and early, while others started preparation for lunch. Morning worship and Sabbath School took place, followed by the Ordination of Brother Ben Thiel. All of our meetings and discussions had taken place on the side of a dry dam. Sitting on a bed of pine needles that have fallen over time, the learning atmosphere was, as Brother Ben put it, “like unto a glimpse of Heaven”. We were all invited to stand together and be united to take Jesus as our Forerunner, to be strong together and trust in the Lord to give us the strength we need daily to fight the battle of truth.
Every meeting that had taken place during this Youth Camp opened the way for each one of us to see further into what is waiting for us. Simple men and women like you and I are capable of more then we know, but only if we have the Lord on our side, without the Lord helping us, there is little hope for the future as we know it.
The Young People’s Meeting was based around working as a United Church or Group of people, as can be seen throughout the Bible, without unity many things wouldn’t have been accomplished, and through divided nations many problems arose.
After close of Sabbath the Youth Camp officially closed. Items and words of praise and thanks were given by visitors from interstate and overseas, as well from Western Australia. Words of thanks were given to all who had made camp possible, especially John and Inneka for thehours spent preparing the camp grounds and getting everything ready. Throughout the entire camp, an endless number of pictures were taken and compiled together for our enjoyment. Following the close of camp we all enjoyed viewing these photos, while some gave enthusiastic commentary throughout the viewing.
Overall Sabbath and every other day throughout the camp were enjoyed by all, and we look forward to many more to come.
Sunday, 31st December 2006
It all seemed to go too fast and now here it was, the last day of camp and the last day of the year! “Pressing On”, the morning worship service was taken by Br Southwell based on the verses found in Philippians 3:13, 14, “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:
but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” May the year ahead bring new challenges and victories! Let’s praise God for
His longsuffering and patience and all the blessings and mercy He bestows—just to show a small part of His great love for such undeserving human beings!
After a hearty breakfast, all hands went to work to help cleanup camp. 9:30am was the scheduled departure time for Tour 4 but departure was delayed while packing was completed. All aboard, we left the camp headed for our first stop at Kings Park. It was well past lunch time when we arrived so that was first on the menu! Br. John and helpers had prepared a delicious meal for us the night before. The group slowly started to diminish as passengers left for the Airport on their homeward journey. Now rejuvenated from lunch, we raced up the steps of the lookout to take in the view over the picturesque park grounds and across the bay to the City. A thoughtful stop was made at the War Memorial before we departed from the park for the city to drop off another passenger. Next was a quick stop at the Bell Tower on the edge of the beautiful Swan River. Hundreds of delicate jellyfish waved in the water and schools of fish weaved and darted around in the water.
Our journey continued along the foreshore, where we stopped for a dinner of scrumptious vegetarian pizzas which disappeared quickly. As the sun slowly faded across the water, the buildings of Perth City came alive with the rich colours of the sunset, reflecting God’s artwork in the sky. We gathered together for evening worship, singing songs, reading and with prayer to God. What an awesome way to welcome the New Year! We travelled to the Guildford Church for much needed rest, but 12:00am couldn’t go by unnoticed by some! With shouts of excitement the New Year was again welcomed in! Tired, we drifted off to sleep…