Healing the Broken-hearted

Camp “Cardio”

In the UK many have laid their plans for holidays and rest in the hope of a warm summer to compensate for a long, cold winter past. Our friends in Eastern Europe and Central Asia have also been planning and praying for thousands of young people who will attend many Gospel Camps over the summer months. SGA is a servant mission, seeking to support believers in their various efforts to reach people for Christ. At this time of year, it is especially important to support their outreach by means of camp ministry.

The countries of the former Eastern Bloc and Central Asia, have some of the neediest young people in the world. Many come from broken families and are taken into inadequate care systems. Others live at home with parents who are alcohol and drug dependent, and in reality, have to fend for themselves. By the time they have reached teenage years, many feel lost, hopeless, and even suicidal, having endured enough to alienate them from society and from God.

Camp Cardio 11
Camp Cardio 3

The medical profession declares that the number one killer is heart disease, but the fact is that ‘broken-heart disease’ devastates many young lives. From a human perspective, the issues are complex and overwhelming. Governments cannot cope with the task before them; their systems are at breaking point, perhaps most already broken.

The power of the Gospel however, heals the broken hearted, and Gospel camps have proved over many years to be places of healing. One example of this is given in reports coming from an SGA supported camp in Poland. Aptly named ‘Cardio 2017’, its purpose was to create a healthy heart by exercise and diet of both a physical and spiritual nature. Among beautiful surroundings of woodlands and fields, Gospel transformation takes place!

On first arrival, many of the young people are sceptical and unsure, but the presence and power of God at work through the camp programme begins to heal broken hearts, as some tell us in their own words.

One girl said,

I thought it would be boring, but this camp changed my life – I gave it to Christ’.

Another shared;

‘Suddenly from being a youth with suicidal thoughts, cursing and many broken relationships, I became a little vulnerable child giving my heart to God’.

The importance of devotional and teaching times

Another testifies;

‘I rarely thought about the Bible, but at this camp I found out what an amazing book it is – it touched my heart’.

One more says;

‘I got a lot from this camp – It’s worth giving your heart to Jesus’.

Fun and games

These testimonies emphasize why SGA believes it is vital to support camp ministries. Whole communities and nations are difficult to transform, but not impossible as Christ changes hearts one at a time. Praise God with us, that the Gospel transforms hearts. Pray with us, that those whose hearts are touched and changed, will remain close to the Lord.

Perhaps this camp ministry is one way in which Christ’s promise, as recorded by Isaiah, is being fulfilled: ‘I have come to heal the broken hearted’.