My name is Courtney Rader. I am starting my third year as a YOKE Folk, but YOKE has been a part of my life for the last 10 years – since I started attending club in 6th grade. I love YOKE because it gives me the opportunity to be a missionary right here in Knoxville.
In the two years I’ve served, I have had the opportunity to lead dozens of girls to Jesus.
Like many YOKE Kids, camp was the highlight of my year. In fact, the two best nights of my life were at YOKE Camp – nearly 10 years apart.
7th grade was without question the most difficult year of my life. My parents were not getting along, my grandmother took her own life, and I was constantly harassed by a group of girls at school. They would knock my books down as we passed in the hallway, stuff me into empty lockers, and once cut off my ponytail. I so looked forward to YOKE Camp, but as it turned out, my tormentors decided to attend as well.
On Friday night I remember the speaker saying that we needed to forgive others like Christ had forgiven us. I was so moved to accept his love and forgiveness that I went forward and prayed with my YOKE Folk. When I was done praying, I knew I needed to go back into the room and forgive the girls who had bullied me, so I did. They all started crying and decided to accept Christ that night as well. What a night! I didn’t think there was any way that it could get better – until last year.
Last year, I was the YOKE Folk who got to lead an entire cabin full of girls to Christ.
I was so nervous that I wouldn’t know what to say or that I would somehow mess it up, but God used me anyway. I could hardly contain my excitement as we returned to the fellowship hall for the evening fun. I was invited to come up front and participate in a game where I was blindfolded. When the blindfold was finally removed, there was my boyfriend, Cameron (also a YOKE Folk), down on one knee holding out an engagement ring! YOKE Camp had always held such a special place in my heart – it had been my dream to share this special moment with my YOKE family. (I said yes!)
Like many of the kids that I now serve, I never would have been able to go to camp without the financial assistance that donors like you provide. Fall camps are coming up in November. Will you consider a gift to impact the life of another middle school student like me?
It costs approximately $125 to send a kid to camp, so your gift could help in the following ways:
$125 – sponsor one YOKE kid. $250 – sponsor one YOKE kid and their YOKE Folk
$500 – sponsor a cabin of YOKE kids. $1,000 – sponsor the cost of a whole YOKE club.
Click on the button below to make a secure, online donation, or mail your gift to YOKE at P.O. Box 3492, Knoxville, TN, 37927.