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i have a confession to make: i do not particularly like vbs (that's vacation bible school for all of you who don't speak churchish). i try my best to put on my best face and conjure up some emotional energy, but the idea of dozens of sweaty children screaming and running around the church halls is daunting to me, at least. suffice to say that it is not my favorite part of church work.
that being said, i do love the energy that the children bring each year, and the enthusiasm. it is a unique opportunity, from my perspective, to spend some quality time with our youngest people, offering them some ideas and pictures about what this Christian life is all about. this year, as in the past several, i am the vbs "floater," which means i walk around the facility and help out wherever needed. today i have been recruited to work in the missions area, which means i will be helping kids stuff these little turtles.we'll be sending them to honduras, eventually, so that children there can receive them. the hope today is that the children will begin to understand that there are people - children - who need to know that they are loved; who need to be prayed for; who need to be fed and taught and loved. these are the kind of seeds that we are trying to sow this week, hoping that some of these little kernels of truth find a good home in one of these sweaty, sugar-charged children.
yesterday, for example, they were taught that God is with us and so we do not need to be afraid. everytime they heard someone say, "God is with us," they were to respond with a boisterous, "FEAR NOT!" last night as we were in the car with four children (jack and cade and their cousins), they were doing this little call and response with ear-shattering enthusiasm. i think that's awesome. who's to say that they won't remember that at some moment when fear is threatening to get the best of them? who's to say that a shouted mantra won't come back to give quiet comfort and hope? who's to say that a stuffed turtle with a child's scribbled name on it won't spread love? who's to say that a week of sweaty screaming children won't just change some young lives?
and so i'm pulling on my crocodile dock t-shirt and getting ready for some turtle-stuffing. God is with us. FEAR NOT!


NJ Grandma said…
We had Crocodile Dock at FUMCTR two weeks ago. By the end of the week every one was yelling "FEAR NOT" even during Chadder's movie. It was fun but it was also good to see Friday. Hope you are having a great summer. ~Gail~
Anonymous said…
How are things going with the new senior pastor? I know it's only been a few weeks.
cathyq said…
Yes, I totally agree about the crazy week of Bible School. I love it and dread it at the same time. The Crocodile Dock theme sounds cool though. I don't think we're doing that one this year. I definitely need to use the mantra though. This week I'm going to start shouting "fear not" every time I get that nervous feeling about all that is happening in my life! Great stuff.
Greg C said…
Ha! I jumped down to the graf beginning "we're sending them down to Honduras" and for a moment I thought you were talking about the kids! And I thought 'wow, he's thinking really long term. That's cool!'
Then I realized you were talking about the turtles.
But it's neat to think that some day in the not too terribly distant future, some of these kids will indeed be going to Honduras or some other place in the world to spread God's message of love and...Fear Not!
greg. said…
greg - that's great stuff, man! just think: it wasn't all that long ago that a certain eric d. was sitting in vbs, dancing to the music and so forth. and then we shipped him to honduras! ha!

your point is right on, though. all of those who are helping out with vbs this week, gluing and running around and singing and dancing and dressing up in costumes and so forth are sowing seeds in this young lives that will grow into who knows what?! it makes it totally worth it. thanks for the reminder.

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