“I’m going to be Moses this year, if I have to pay for votes.”
“Moses would never do that.”
“My whole life will not be whole, if I don’t get to be Moses this year.”
“You do know Moses was male.”
“Exactly. This is our chance to prove we can do it.”
Our 8th grade Sunday school was off to our yearly week at church camp somewhere in N. Texas. I will avoid telling you specifics to protect all parties involved.
The camp had 8th grade Sunday schools participate from different denominations each year. Our “quest” consisted of our boys in one cabin led by Jimbo a college junior, and Pamby, a senior at SMU led our girls cabin. An insane combo, alleviating parental fears of wild parties, which made me wonder about our parents’ memories of their college days.
Our quest was assigned Tuesday to choose a Moses to lead them on a hike of his/her choosing as long as we returned for lunch. Our previous Moseses had been quite boring, uneventful, and predictable. So I secretly campaigned and promised lower taxes with no more school, and won by a landslide.
I was given my rod, ( of course) and Jimbo took one compass. Our canteens were filled with water, as we marched off in the hot summer Texas sun. I was determined to be unusual and extraordinary, so I insisted we not take the boring road. Moses, I told them, didn’t have marked roads (he did have those pillars of clouds and fire, but that was neither here nor there). We started off so happy.
Two hours later, and thirty minutes before lunch, our canteens empty, we turned to Jimbo for help. Pamby on the verge of tears,was no help, because she feared missing sorority rush a month away, .
People were a tad irritated with me as Mighty Leader because of a silly cactus patch, sticking to their legs. Jimbo’s compass was no help. There was no marker on it that pointed us to camp. We were led astray with a false security in compasses. I still to this day don’t trust them.
We were hungry and my “friends “ who had voted me in, were starting a mutiny. I would like to say I turned to God for help, but somehow I was scared to, since I had lied about lowering taxes.
The unthinkable happened. We were so late for lunch, they had to send out a search party. First time in the history of Camp -------, a search party was formed. By now, our two backup leaders (Jimbo and Pamby) didn’t even consider raising my arm to fight the fight of faith. They wanted to chop it off.
My rod when thrown down stayed a rod, and I felt so vulnerable. Some of the kids started growing a strange rash and really becoming quite ornery. I considered calling my parents to come get me, if we survived this.
Pamby was so scared, she said she would quit her sorority and repent for drinking too much, if God would save us. Jimbo tried so hard , to appear cam, but was sweating a lot, and looked weak. He almost fainted, telling us he can’t skip meals. We were now 2 hours late for lunch.
And yes we came to a river ( stream ) . Since my rod had failed me so far, I decided that we needed to cross the stream without waiting for a miraculous divide, as there just has to be help on the other side. They still listened to me ‘cause Jimbo and Pamby were cratering This showed the groups’ intelligence.
One hour later we were found and taken in a bus back to camp to a happy tearful reunion. Half our group had to go home early for poison ivy issues. I thought they were wimps, but I was immune. I guess being Moses has some perks.
The weirdest part of the experience was when we crossed that river, we ended up in a nudist colony that was right behind the camp. No, we saw no nudists, but had we seen them in hindsight I think singing… “Put on a garment of Praise” would have been effective and a great witness.
I was told my Moses days were over forever, and I was so relieved. It’s so hard to lead obstinate unappreciative people.
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