As an exhausted group of dads and their somewhat tired children huddled in the cozy glow of the Shelter to escape the rain after a day of activity & time together, Derek Yoder shared from 1 Corinthians 13 and a message from his heart. He tried to explain the overwhelming new, protective love he felt the first moment he saw his daughter, the pain he experienced when seeing her injured, and the joy in spending time with her and watching her grow. This is nothing, he reminded the group, compared to God’s love for each of us. Then, the Shelter filled with 28 voices singing a beautifully improvised rendition of “How Deep the Father’s Love,” led by Ruskin, with children worshipping alongside their fathers, in the midst of their Father.
Nine families gathered for Dads & Kids Weekend in October and made the weekend a fun, memorable bonding experience! The adventurous group braved a night hike, canoed in the fall morning mist, and dueled at the ping pong table. During a break in the rain, a clatter of hammers, wire nails, pine boards, and little voices echoed from the Shelter Campsites as the group assembled birdhouses to take home, a memento from a weekend spent building something much bigger.
7 dads brought their family and/or extended family to Dads & Kids Weekend.
Dads & Kids Weekend brought families closer together at Pine Lake.
Spread gravel, sanitize silverware, and trim the peninsula: in their two weeks at Pine Lake, Keith and Janet Graybill checked these and many other humble items off the perpetual to-do list. Driven by their appreciation for the reconciliatory ministry of Pine Lake, as well as the joy they experience from volunteerism, the Graybill’s happily pitched in at camp during their most recent visit with their son (Executive Director, Matt Graybill) and his family.
Primarily, they prepared Pine Lake to host upcoming guest groups: a homeschool group, a wedding, and a quilters guild. Tasks like washing the out of reach windows in the Lodge and raking and trimming brush in the Shelter Campsites spruced up the space quite a bit. For Janet, helping with hospitality is a way of joining in the mission of camp, which resonates deeply with them. “We enjoy making it look like a welcoming place for people.”
As Keith pressure washed nearly every picnic table & bench at Main Camp, he had time to reflect on God’s work in his own life. “In life one does not always see tangible progress or the making of a difference in our efforts … it is very rewarding to receive visible confirmation the beauty of reconditioned wood on a bench or picnic table revealed when a pressure washer beats off the accumulation of scaling from weather exposure. The beauty of camp is apparent, but more is waiting to be explored. Might volunteering also open us up for God’s exploration and reveal?”
Over the last year, more than a few guests have been able to experience peace and renewal in the natural beauty of Pine Lake because of supporters’ generosity of time! If you want to join in the fun, call the office and talk to Matt. We still have more pressure washing (among other things) to do!
Keith “Pap” Graybill and grandson Ian spreading gravel
Keith Graybill pressure washes one of many picnic tables.
The Pavilion tables gleam after being pressure washed
Janet Graybill washed the Pavilion silverware
All the Pavilion silverware and utensils were cleaned!
Beth & Janet Graybill made 25 pie crusts for a bake sale benefiting Pine Lake