I’m back at Lake Ann Camp, my favorite place on earth, this weekend helping out in the kitchen, and as I sit here in the Interns’ Office with half a dozen of the best people in the world playing games and laughing it up, my mind keeps wandering to the sad truth that, for the first time in four years, I won’t be working here this summer.
I’ve worked regularly in the kitchen at Lake Ann for so long now that thinking about spending summer anywhere else feels a little unreal. After all, when we’re kids our lives are practically defined by routine, and adulthood seems so far away that we almost begin to believe that those routines will never end. Then, suddenly, all of the things that we took for granted, the patterns that we grew to love and expect, are gone, and we have to choose for ourselves where to go next.
It’s so tempting in this in-between place to fight for my beloved consistencies. I want to keep change at arm’s reach, but the only way I can succeed is to make a tooth-and-nail struggle to stay in place as time pushes me slowly and irresistibly forward. As difficult as it is let go of the past, there comes a time when I have to admit that I will never be able to get it back and that if I don’t devote my energy to building a worthwhile future, eventually I’ll be left with nothing but nostalgia and a paralyzing case of apathy addiction. My years at Lake Ann were some of the best of my life, and I’ll never forget them, but I’ve got plenty of best years left ahead of me, and if I want to seize them I’ve got to move on to whatever God has for me next. He won’t steer me wrong.