This past week the three CFCI Summer Interns went to Storm Lake, Iowa, one of CFCI’s bases.  Storm Lakeis a town of close to 11,000 people with 30 different languages spoken!
The interns went to Storm Laketo help out with a week long summer camp called Summer Sizzle. Summer Sizzle is a Christian day camp for girls entering 5th through 8th grades. During the week the girls were able to learn about God and themselves while participating in numerous activities such as Zumba, painting pottery, baking brownies in a mug, making a glow bracelet and small group time.
Below are some of our favorite memories from the week.
One of my favorite parts of Summer Sizzle was praise and worship, which occurred in the morning when the campers arrived and in the afternoon right before the campers left for the day. It was an awesome experience witnessing 90+ girls worshiping our Lord through song and dance.
–Rachel Beach

As the campers worked their way through The Beatititudes (Matthew 5:3-10) during their time at Summer Sizzle, it was Day 2 that had a personal impact on me.  At our debriefing on Monday night the camp directors asked for a group to make the actions and skit for the next day’s verse.  Without consulting the team I raised my hand and took on the responsibility, dragging the entire Yellow Team with me on this venture.  Jerica, Rachel, and Naomi accepted the choice I had made for all of us soon enough and we started our planning.
Our skit depicted Jerica, a young girl who constantly compared herself to those around her (Emily and Naomi).  Jerica would hold up signs saying, “I’m not as… as her.”  The blank was filled with popular, athletic, smart, and talented, but we all know that the enemy runs with our imagination when it comes to comparisons and there are a million other ways to fill in that blank.  As she lifted them, Jerica would hold them high above her head as Jesus (Rachel) ripped the signs in half and at the end had a sign on His own.  
Dear child of God,
I love you just as you are.
Love, Jesus
Matthew 5:5 (The Message) “You’re blessed when you are content with just who you are– no more, no less.  That’s the moment you find yourself proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.”
What a powerful verse for young women to hear as they endure their middle school years.  What a powerful verse for me to hear as a single, 22 year-old, recent college graduate. What a powerful experience to be able to portray this verse, teach it to the young women of Storm Lake, and reflect on whether I am living and feeling content in just who I am— no more, no less.
–Emily Koopmann
Last week, the other two interns and myself were given the opportunity to accompany our sister CFCI base in Storm Lake, IAduring their Summer Sizzle camp for girls.  
Upon arrival, we were under the impression that we were going to be just observing the camp activities, taking some videos, getting interviews and generally filling in gaps wherever help was needed.  What was so cool for me, on a personal level, was that God clearly had bigger plans than that.  
On the first day, we were told that they were short on camp counselors;  Emily and I were able to step up and step into a more personal, interactive role as counselors for a group of eight young fifth grade girls.  I had no idea at that point that these girls would impact me the way that they did in just five short days.  
Each girl was so very different from the other, yet so vibrant in their own way.  We found, as group counselors, that it was definitely a challenge to connect Spiritually, at least on a deeper level, with a group of 10 year-old girls.  But, as I reflect back, I realize that God had put the other counselors and myself in their life for a simpler reason: to let the love of Christ pour out of us into them.    
What started as a quiet and somewhat awkward group on the first day quickly transformed into a group full of laughter and spunk.  Each day, I could noticeably see the layers of discomfort and shyness fade away from each of these girls, and that is when the animation, story-telling and just life in general started to pour out of them.  It was, understatedly, an awesome transformation to witness and be a part of.
What’s funny is my title was “counselor,” yet I found myself in the company of eight young teachers so many times throughout the week.  These girls taught me a lot about myself and were perfect little guides on where I am on my walk with Christ.
God is doing so many amazing things in Storm Lake, through CFCI and The Bridge, and I feel so grateful to be involved in such a life-changing organization.    
–Jerica Kuncl

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