SpringHill Blog

Summer Leader Blogs: Emily's Story

I had spent a long time trying to decide if returning to Springhill for a second summer was something I wanted to do, I prayed a lot about it and it seemed that every other opportunity ended back at Springhill. I was a lifeguard last year at Michigan Overnight and I knew I wanted to try a new position, so I figured that a middle school counselor would be something more challenging for me. When I arrived, I went to all the training sessions, which meant that camp was starting and everything was real, yet I had this weird feeling I wasn’t going to be a counselor. I brushed it off because the feeling made no sense to me, what else would I be?

A couple days into training, I was talking to Matt Hildebrand, a director at Springhill, and I told him that I was going into my senior year of nursing school. At the time I vowed that my summers were for fun and no nursing was allowed because 1. I am going to do it for the rest of my life and 2. My entire school year is devoted to countless hours of nursing and I needed a break.

I knew they were still looking for people to fill spots in the infirmary, so right when I spilled the beans about my major I immediately regretted it. Matt first offered me a health officer position, which I turned down due to my no-nursing summer vow. Then after further discussion he offered me the Copper Country Infirmary lead position.

I prayed a lot about the decision, asked for a lot of advice, and of course cried of confusion and fighting off lies that told me “I couldn’t handle a lead position”. To me, anything with the word ‘lead’ at the end of it sounded way more challenging then I had originally expected or anticipated for the summer. But I knew which option God was asking me to take; I was just too scared to admit it.

I ended up accepting the Infirmary lead position. I felt honored but also angry. I didn’t want my summer to be about nursing yet. But that is exactly what God was asking me to do. I am graduating in one year, so for more times than I can count I have cried to the Lord telling Him of my anxiousness in becoming an RN and how I don’t feel prepared or ready. Little did I know this job was an answer to those prayers, I just couldn’t see it at the time. I also later realized that God asking me to take the infirmary position was a huge affirmation of my calling as a nurse.

The summer started with a lot of anxiousness and battling my insecurities of not feeling confident or good enough. As the summer progressed, I not only gained confidence in my nursing skills and leadership abilities, but I learned that serving people in the infirmary brought me joy. Joy that I did not know nursing could bring meā€¦another answered prayer. I learned what it looks like to love more selflessly and I was humbled more than once by watching God relentlessly pursue campers that I had no patience for.

There were two kids that stuck out during the summer. They gave us a hard time in the infirmary with everything from homesickness to behavioral problems and I admit that I was totally fine if they ended up going home, yet both kids stayed and both kids ended up giving their lives to Christ. God loved those kids unconditionally and I learned that I needed to do the same.

During training, we were asked to write our goal or mission statement for the summer. In my mission statement, I included at the end “trusting the Lord’s will over my life”. When writing this, I was still a middle school counselor and had not yet been offered the job as infirmary lead. This summer God showed me a deeper understanding of what it means to trust His will over my life. Even when my insecurities, doubts and fears of failure lead me to choose paths that are easier and more comfortable. We serve a God that cares enough to intervene in our lives that we may not sit still but live more abundantly.

This summer has taught me that God is trustworthy. He is faithful. I don’t need to stress about graduating in a year because I serve a God who knows what I need, and will push me out of my comfort zone. It has been an honor to work at Springhill and be a part of something so much bigger than myself.


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