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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hometown Nazareth

Oh, VBS. I hate you. But I kinda love you, too.

I tend to try to steer away from tradition, especially when things are done simply because they've always been done. This also holds true in regards to children's ministry; I dreaded putting on Vacation Bible School because I feel like it's such a gimmick. My ideal summer children's outreach is to host a free soccer camp for community kids, sharing the Gospel through the best sport in the world. Since I knew I'd be having a baby this summer, I wasn't quite ready to reinvent the wheel, so I decided to stick with a traditional VBS.

But then I started looking at curriculum. Ugh. So many of them were so me-centered and completely obsessed with a theme that it was hard to pick the Gospel out of them. I didn't want the kids to come to VBS for a week and only remember that it was about a panda (*no offense to any churches who chose that curriculum); I wanted them to see a true picture of who God is. I was thrilled to find the Holy Land Adventure, which this year took us to Nazareth when Jesus was a kid. The whole week was totally God-focused, and I loved that the format wasn't so typical.

I like to do things on my own (or as Avery would say, "by my own self") because I'm such a perfectionist that delegation is not in my vocabulary. God kinda threw the whole dependence thing in my face though. Dependence on Him, utilizing others' gifts, etc. And I'm so glad He did because there is absolutely no way I could've pulled it off on my own.

It was a great week. God was glorified. I'm glad it's over. :) Here are some pictures, and the thank yous are at the end.













We had SO many volunteers during the week, but I'm especially thankful for:
  • Adrienne, who was my right hand through the entire process. She doesn't even think she did anything, but she kept me sane through the planning while I bounced ideas off her. And during the week of VBS, she practically ran everything while I was hiding away nursing Landon in my office. And she was our resident photographer for the week!
  • Jennifer, who planned, coordinated, and executed feeding 70+ volunteers every night. I didn't even have to think about food because I knew she had it all under control.
  • Matt, who organized the band and led the Celebration time every night. I love his heart for worship and serving. 
  • Mom, who took care of Landon while I ran around like a crazy woman and took Avery home to get her ready for bed while we were closing up shop each night.
  • Kendra, who coordinated all the decorating with her brilliant theater mind and then played the part of Mary each night. 
  • Sandra, who publicized the event so well and got the word out into the community (not that numbers really mean that much, but we had double the amount of kids this year from last year, and about half of them weren't from our church).
  • Every tribe leader, kitchen crew member, tech team member, marketplace shopkeeper, Celebration team member, games helper, nursery worker, registration worker, and everyone else who played a part in making the week happen. I can't say thank you enough!

1 comment:

joyceandnorm said...

Ahh, we're doing the Panda theme!!! =p I do know what you mean about it being gimmicky. At the church we used to attend, our "VBS" was a whole summer program...as in 6-8 weeks long and the whole day with the VBS theme as well as some "school-like" stuff in there. This is in Chinatown, so the parents actually loved this, not so much the kids, although they didn't seem to mind too much. I think it's more relational this way, as well as your soccer idea. The 1-week thing is much too short for even the leaders to remember the kids' names as they rush everyone from one station to the next. It's still fun though, and I'm sure some kids get some Bible truths from it. Anyhow, it sounds like you guys had a fantastic time and yay for all the volunteers!