Sunrise of Anglesea Beach

Having gone on a Christian Union camp last week, I had come to this profound realisation that camps are pretty awesome.

Camps are very unique in the sense that it gathers a whole bunch of people to do life together for a few days. Where in the span of a few days, you would have spent with them a semesters worth of time as you would in class, but the difference is in the context of enjoying one another’s company. Going on camp is like socialising but on steroids, of which essentially all hours of the day are spent socialising especially if it is a large camp. It is a fantastic, albeit contrived mechanism in which strangers can become friends, some even close friends – over a few days. Camps provide the space to escape from the prison of everyday life, being jam-packed with many novel memories. From an efficiency point of view, it is fantastic in terms of an investment of just a few days.

In lieu of 2020 being void of human interaction, 2020 made me realise how precious human connection is. That human friendship should never be taken for granted, and when given the opportunity, we should enjoy this companionship. Yet, the overall historical trend of human relationships is quite grim. It was only in the last century in which two world wars ravaged the globe. To cease the fighting required the last resort – nothing short of an atomic bomb. I wouldn’t be surprised that a war would be happening at some place at any point in time of human history, because human conflict is inevitable when humans interact with each other.

Yet, there is the off chance that human relationships can be beautiful. When done right – instead of conflicts, we have sympathy. Instead of pain, a great friend can share the load of our burdens to help us heal. The notion of trekking through life together despite the depravity of this world is a thing not to be held lightly.

“A burden shared is a burden halved.”

T.A. Webb

In Christianity, any two true Christians are referred to as brothers or sisters in Christ. Although this language is thrown around a lot in Church and has become a cliché, we can sometimes forget its significance. This statement implies that the Christian has brothers and sisters that are strangers to him, even though they have never met. That even though they may initially be strangers, there is an instant connection and we can immediately enjoy one’s company. Small talk immediately becomes good talk, as it were.

In the past, I used to shun the concept of camps, especially if the people taking part in a camp were people that I do not want to interact with. I realise now that this idea is extremely naïve – because we can learn something new from anyone that we talk to. Camps are a great catalyst for building friendships and networks of trust that may pay dividends in the future. Although camps may be a pressure cooker of constant conversation, these conversations hold great potential in discovering fresh perspectives and new ways of looking at the world.

So, camps are pretty awesome.