This I Believe

Kjerstin - Centennial, Colorado
Entered on November 12, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: community, work

Looking is different than seeing. When looking, the whole picture is not grasped; only an overview without much detail. Seeing allows the time to notice the details and absorb them. In life, people look more than they see. Without taking time to look, small moments are lost. These small moments show stories, emotion, and things to be learned. Special moments should be experienced; they should be treasured, retold, resulting in something great. This I believe.

Last June, a group from my church went up to Flathead Lutheran Bible Camp in Montana. Our service to the camp was to build two platform tents for people to stay in during the summer. The building site was covered with weeds and bushes. Knowing what needed to be done and the amount of time given, I was unsure whether or not we would finish in time.

Throughout the week we were assigned numerous jobs of sawing, drilling, clearing the building site, measuring, shoveling and carrying. We worked continuously for hours everyday. Working was really enjoyable; we got to know one another, and we learned how to build something. Working with tools gave us an accomplished feeling. Building something was a whole new experience. I never realized how much work it takes to build something as simple, yet complex, as a platform tent. It was exhilarating to see those tents built with my hands and the hands of people around me. Nothing in the world comes close to that.

After days of work, the tents were complete. I was bewildered by our astounding feat. We were proud of our work, and the counselors were more than thankful with tears running down their faces. The tents represented the group throughout the week through fun, challenges, support, and dedication to our cause. As we worked, we made new friends, we became skilled at something we never tried, and we challenged time. One day we were supposed to go do a ropes course, but instead we chose to work on the platform tents for another few hours. Our determination led our tremendous work. We faced our challenges through song, laughter, prayer, and support from the people around us. The platform tents made the group become one, working together on something spectacular. During the week, I learned who I am and how I can change the world too. The tents, most importantly, represented one of the best weeks of my life.

Just like I did, people should learn to see. From this they really get a chance to live, learn, and do something great. I learned to love, live, work, and have fun doing it all. Everyone in their lifetime should get their chance to feel like this. Everyone should take the time to look and then see. They will be amazed at what they can accomplish. The once in a lifetime feeling will live with them for the rest of their life as they look back and retell the story. This I believe.