Writings and thoughts of Heath D. Sizick

Welcome to Heath's Blog

Thank you for checking out my blog. The intent of me starting a blog was to centralize my writings - devotionals, articles, poetry, thoughts, etc. I pray something I say will be an encouragement to you and your faith.
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Rockbridge 2016 – Post V

This will be my final post. In about 8 hours from now we will board the bus and head back to wild and wonderful home. One of our guys already told his leader he doesn’t want to go home. Why? Many reasons I am sure, but here are a few worth noting. Hard things await many kids at home. Here they get to be kids; they have food in their bellies; their own bed; very little pressures or concerns; they laugh often; and they are loved well. Thankfully they have friends and Young Life leaders to support and encourage them when they get home.

Last night was, surprise!! Another great night. It was different. Night one  kids put on grubby clothes and ran through the obstacle course and got physically messy. Many of these kids showed up at Rockbridge spiritually messy.  Last night, kids got cleaned up physically but putting on their nice outfits. They were served, for many, the fanciest dinner they have ever had. We took pictures (see below). Kids had fun dressing up and looking good. In addition, last night many kids got spiritually clean! Here is how it went down:

After dinner we had club. At club Croc shared the greatest love story ever – Jesus Christ, coming to earth to reconcile us to God by dying on a cross – taking our sin so we could experience life now and forever. The Gospel! Croc did an excellent job. After the talk he sent us all outside where nearly every light on the camp property was out. For 20 minutes kids spread out across the grass, under trees, on benches, and sat quietly. The stars were out and it was quite peaceful. Many kids prayed for the very first time. Some made decisions during this “holy” time to follow Jesus. Once a whistle blew all were ushered inside where they were greeted with a stage full of summer staff (college-aged) and work crew (high school). These folks volunteered for a whole month to serve and really make this camp happen. Two of the work crew kids shared their faith journey story. It was very well done. The night concluded with some free time before cabin bell and cabin time.

This morning we had brunch. I am full. We also had our last Real Life. Croc shared about the resurrection and explained to the campers what it looks like to follow Jesus. We then had our area meeting. I had kids write a letter to themselves that I will mail out around Christmas. We also gave them our area t-shirt to wear this evening.  It’s free time until we have dinner, clean our cabins, and have our last club. I am grateful for the prayers and support to make this camp happen. I am grateful for energy and the sacrifice of our leaders to come and love on kids. I am graI am incredibly blessed. Thanks for reading and I hope it served as an encouragement to you.

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Rockbridge 2016 – Post IV

My favorite night at Young Life camp: 50’s/Oldies night. Girls in poodle skirts and the fellas in white tees and jeans. After Croc delivered another great talk the theme night was on. They turned the dining hall into a 50’s diner. We had calzones and coke while they played doo-wop and Motown music. From there we hustled to the club room for the opera. The opera is where the funny characters bring their story to a conclusion. It is incredibly funny and impressively creative. If the kids weren’t having a blast yet they would when the sock hop started and balloons dropped from the rafters. After dancing (and sweating) we were sent outside to find ice cream sundaes awaiting us. After a brief cool down we were brought inside for karaoke – more dancing and singing (and sweating).  Each cabin or area went on stage and sang with the whole camp. We were also given two tickets that were used for a night zip-line ride and a night swing ride. Chopper chose one of his fellas for the night zip and I took two of my guys onto the high swing (A.K.A. The Screamer). It was awesome. The night concluded with cabin time as kids processed Sin. Our goal as leaders was to do our best to ensure our campers understand Sin verses sins or better said, Sin verses symptoms of sin. Some great conversations were had.

In regards to schedule and programming the camp started to slow down significantly today. We had breakfast in bed – a terrific way to bless our kids and let them sleep in. Then Real Life in the late morning. This was followed by optional tournaments around camp such as basketball, volleyball, ping pong, etc. Today is set up to allow us leaders to be with our kids and grab more 1 on 1’s. It is very hot today so we are trying to keep the kids hydrated. It’s been phenomenal so far.

Tonight is our banquet night and Croc will share the greatest story ever told. I will share more tomorrow on tonight’s activities. I need to go hit the pool. Until tomorrow…

Rockbridge 2016 – Post III

Halfway thru. Waking up this morning was a bit harder this morning. Our cabin stayed up a little after the 1 a.m. hour. Can I get a shout out for coffee! Our guys were not up acting crazy, but rather sitting around talking and laughing. Even some serious conversations were taking place. Our cabin bonded last night.

Last night was incredible. Night 3 is always country theme. It starts out with a rodeo where the camp is divided into four families. I was named the family head of the Hatfields. Fitting right? Our family competed in the following games: shovel relay, stretcher relay, hippity hop (see pic below), and back spin relay. Afterward we ate a delicious country dinner as we sat on blankets. After club we had a county fair where kids could participate in a variety of fair type games to earn tickets where they could buy funnel cake, snow cones, or even “get” their leaders with a pie in the face, dunk tank, etc. If all this wasn’t enough we then did some dancing – O Johnny O and the Virginia Reel. The kids had a blast. There is something so beautiful about watching kids who don’t normally dance have big smiles and laughs. The night concluded with a hoedown in the club room fittingly finishing with a fruit smash. Boom! Another phenomenal day at Young Life camp.

We started today with breakfast. We also had our 2nd Real Life. Today they had 5 college students begin to share their stories growing up. The hope from this time is that each kid could identify with one person. This also helps us leaders when we meet 1 on 1 with our high school friends to learn their story and help them process life and faith. From Real Life we had the Water Regatta. Back to our families it was ran similar to the rodeo where we competed in different events such as: Sun bathing, sand sculpture, orcas relays, synchronized swimming, and more. After a delicious lunch here we are – free time. Soon the girls will do Bubbles and Randolph County boys head to the trees for the high ropes course.

Tonight will be another ridiculous theme night – quite possibly my most favorite of all. However, you will have to wait until tomorrow to hear about it. More importantly, Croc will share an all important talk tonight that will surely help kids understand the brokenness in all our lives and around the world. Kids are having a blast but they are also leaning in to the talks. Ok, I need to go get ready for the high ropes course. Until tomorrow…