Five years ago I took the plunge and decided to become a High School Camp counselor. Whoosh, did it ever come with its list of challenges? I encountered many types of kids, each of them coming with their own baggage. I would sometimes sit in my cabin at night and think, "what have these kids been taught? Where are there parents through it all?" These kids had experienced things I had never even known exist. Cutting, drugs, alcohol, sexual abuse, the list continues. But there was one thing that continued to stick out. The struggle of self-image and identifying where that comes from. These girls had been completely identified by what men in their life were telling them. They had been damaged by the absence of a father. They had been lost in their spiritual walk because they were comparing their Heavenly Father to their Earthly Father. The enemy had won the battle. He had figured out how to conquer another young woman.
I saw this same fad over and over again. These girls were being lied to. They thought if they had bleach blonde hair, or the cutest boyfriend, or the most expensive purse, that they were going to experience true happiness. Never had they been faced with the idea of letting their Heavenly Father identify them. Knowing and BELIEVING that they were created just the way they were supposed to be. I struggled everyday with Christ, wondering why these girls had the doubts about themselves that they did.
There was one particular girl that, to this day, sticks out. She had come to camp with gobs of baggage. We sat in a small group and I asked each of them to share with me what they wanted freedom from. Everyone shared, and finally this one girl spoke up and said, "I want freedom from self mutilation." "I knew I wasn't going to be able to cut myself while I was at camp, so I have this rubber band on my wrist. Every time I want to hurt myself, I snap it." She continued talking about the pain that she had been inflicting on herself for months. It was her way to experience relief. I asked her to give me the rubber band and know that Christ will provide her freedom and comfort. Sure enough, she handed me that rubber band and continued on her way. The problem, there are so many girls/women struggling with this very thing but are convinced there is no way out. The devil has come to lie and deceive. We know this, yet we continue to let him win. We think that drugs and alcohol are the answer. I'm sorry folks but we have to turn this vicious cycle. We know where true pleasure and happiness comes from, and that's drawing close to the heart of Christ.