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I remember one time, when I was around 10 years old, I went to summer camp with my church for the first time. This was the longest I had been away from home. I remember the first few nights being so homesick. I cried for my mom and dad. I missed them so much and all I wanted to do was see them and have them come and get me.

I’ll never forget the camp counselor who literally poured courage into my little heart. He said, "Hey, why don’t we go sit outside and talk about it." I sat down with him and he listened as I shared how homesick I was. Then he shared love and compassion with me. He told me I could make it. He told me I could do it. And his presence brought courage back into me. At the very least, it helped me get through the nights there.

That’s usually when I became homesick. During the day, when I was busy with activities I wasn’t thinking about home and wasn’t bothered with homesickness. But when it came time to sleep in the bunks, at night, I lay there in my sleeping bag and became aware of my loneliness.

This is what Christ’s presence does for us. He comes to us, puts His arm around us and says, "Let’s sit and talk awhile." He encourages us to keep going, to be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord and not to grow weary in well doing.

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