“Leon most of the students are finishing the exams on Thursday, now I don’t know what to do”

Our Christian camp for students was beginning today; Tuesday, and I received this message from my volunteer, Akhona.  I just completed the payment for accommodations.  The church owned facility allowed us to book the venue only a week ago.  My flesh whispered, “TIA” (This is Africa). My guilty emotions rose, because I knew this would happen…

In August, Akhona, expressed to me after sharing the gospel with students on a new campus, that we needed to do a camp for the students after they completed their exams in late September.  Based on my campus experience, my initial reaction was no, because a camp could not be done well so soon.  The volunteers deferred to my wisdom, but the challenge and their energy made me restless.  After a week wrestling with God, I shared with Akhona let’s do the Christian retreat.  He would recruit and register the students and I would do the logistics.

I found a small venue that would accommodate 22 people and a caterer for the three-night camp.  Akhona explained how the narrative of Gideon’s 300 gripped his heart and the Judges 7 passage should be preached.  We designed a program for culturally Xhosa students to combat African traditional religions, give them confidence in their relationship with Christ and help them understand how to be empowered by the Holy Spirit.  After consulting with students, the volunteers determined dates in September for the camp and recruited for the retreat. On the morning the camp was to start, I received Akhona’s message.

…Controlling my emotions, I told him to pray, and then I proceeded to pray.  Immediately the solution presented itself.  We moved the start date from Tuesday to Thursday.   The camp venue, students, caterer and speakers were all satisfied with this adjustment.  Below are a few excerpts from the students’ feelings about the Christian camp:

“It was so amazing, best experience ever!!!”

“I had a relationship with God but did not build fellowship with him, this camp made me see this in a different perspective and that you need to have God in order to have true Salvation.”

“I am very happy to have come to this camp and I am very honored to hear the Word of God coming from you.”


Leon Best

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