Vacation Bible School (VBS) is in full swing this week as I am writing this. There are few weeks as busy or tiring as VBS week (as well as the time both before and after) on the church calendar. While all the volunteers put in a tremendous amount of work, the VBS director has been putting in countless hours thinking about, preparing, and organizing for these five days. In reality, the preparation for this year’s VBS began when last year’s ended. So, with that being said, I’d like to say a huge thank you to Bob and Sarah Scaia, who have done a lot of work to make sure that this event was both efficient and effective!
I am thankful for the faithfulness of our volunteers, all of whom want nothing more than for these young ones who come through our doors to hear the life transforming power of the Gospel. Sometimes we think that it is only the teachers or the folks up on the stage who are presenting the Gospel, but the truth is that each person working behind the scenes to pull this off are living out the Gospel message on full display to these young people God has entrusted to us. It is an important reminder to all of us, volunteer or not, that we do indeed live out our faith in how we live out our lives (a message we will hear repeatedly as we study the Epistle of James on Sunday mornings).
One of the aspects of the week that the kids get the most excited for is the mission offering. This year we chose to support the Battleground Skate Park here in Battle Creek with our offering. Of course, this being VBS, there was a small competition between the boys and the girls. Depending on which group raised the most money, either Aryn or I would be doused by a five gallon bucket of ice water on Friday (if the boys raise the most money, Aryn will receive the ice bucket; if the girls raise the most, I will be on the receiving end). While the competition is fun, it has been good to see that the kids understand the most important thing is that money is being raised for a ministry that tells others about Jesus Christ. At the time of this writing, $237.13 has been raised for the skate park, and this was with a smaller than usual turnout of kids! May God receive all the glory for this!
This Sunday morning, if you see some folks wandering around with a dazed, exhausted look on their face, you can safely assume they have just been through VBS week. But I encourage you to look a little closer, because the exhaustion is not what will be dominant. No, it will be the joy that comes with knowing that seeds have been planted and watered. It will be the joy that comes with knowing that there are children who have plainly and clearly heard about Jesus Christ: how He loves them, how He came to earth to die on the cross for their sins, and how He rose again on the third day, victorious over sin and death! That’s the kind of joy that cuts through the tiredness and brings us back year after year. So, when you see Bob and Sarah approaching you in the not-so-distant future, would you be willing to say “yes” to volunteering at next year’s VBS? It doesn’t matter if it’s making snacks, helping to clean up, or leading a group of students, you’ll be making a Kingdom impact on young lives. Just something to think about…