“Whatever you do, work heartily,
as for the Lord and not for men”

Colossians 3:23

A lot of jobs at camp are behind the scenes. It could be scraping food off of dirty dishes, sweeping the kitchen, or mopping the dish room. Peeling a bunch of ice cold hard boiled eggs, shoveling snow from entryways, handing out ice skates, or tying wet laces together on returned skates and then spraying them with sanitizer. There are visible jobs at camp, and there are invisible jobs at camp. There are jobs that appear fun and enjoyable, and there are jobs that are less than glamorous. But all of the various jobs add up to a place well run, well cared for, and ready to accommodate people who love to come and spend time here. That’s what Barakel is about. People coming, making this their place, their camp, their retreat away from the pace of life. And for so many it is a place where they can hear from the Lord and retune their hearts to sing His praise, as an old hymn says. In order for this to continue to be a place people can come and do those things, it also needs to be a place with faithful workers, both those who live here year round and many, many who come and volunteer their time and effort. That is one thing we do appreciate in a whole new way as we adjust to the rhythm of a retreat season: the helpful volunteers who come and labor with us to keep the place running during a retreat. We really don’t exaggerate when we say that we could not do it without all of the volunteers that come for each and every event that is held here. In fact, that is such a unique thing at Barakel; the way the Lord sends workers to cover all of these jobs. There is no way the resident staff could possibly cover all of the jobs alone! And possibly the best part? The fact that the helpers come, and THEY enjoy it too. They come with servants’ hearts and willing hands and fresh energy; they leave tired, but refreshed. Because even when they come to work, they still come and find a place of retreat separate from the pace of normal life. They find a place with fellowship and a community of believers. And they find a place with devotions, chapel, and music. Where their hearts, along with the hearts of the teen campers, are tuned to sing God’s praise. 

We are thankful to be here in this work, for all of those who come to help us, and for those of you who give to make it possible.

Rachel, for the Bennetts