It is that time of the year again, when churches
come alive with exotic jungle scenes and other far
out places. Those spaces where adults meet to
discuss the churchís ďimportant itemsĒ are now
occupied by the youngest among us. Their wide eyes
and unbridled spirits fill the steeples with vibrant
laughter and hopeful imagination.
I have fond memories of attending Vacation Bible
School myself. It was the time of the summer where I
got to go to church at night and sing songs at my
own pace. More importantly, it was at Vacation Bible
School where the foundation of my faith was laid, as
I sung songs about Godís love for me.
Though technology has changed since my time in VBS,
the message is the same:
Jesus loves you.
This is a scene from Weird Animals - brought to you
and your children by the Lincoln Neighborhood
VBS churches July 7-11, 2014. Come learn about weird
creatures and God's Love!
All week, weíve led the children in an adventure
through the realities of life. Our time together has
been spent exploring how sometimes we donít fit in;
how some times we are noticeably different; and how
sometimes, we just donít know why things happen. But
what we do know is this: that we are all created
exactly as God wanted us to be; that God sees us as
beautiful, especially because of our differences;
and that though we may not understand why things
happen, Godís love remains constant.
It is easy to write our children off as the Ďfuture
of the church.í After all, they arenít writing
checks or contributing financially to the latest
church campaign. After spending a week at VBS, Iím
reminded again that our children are as much of the
movers and shakers of the church as we adults are.
We have much to learn from our children.
I learn from their enthusiastic gospel proclaim
gospel: that even when we feel left out, Jesus loves
I learn from children who, though formerly
strangers, lock hands and sing that age old song we all sang when we
were little: Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.
I learn from their gallant statements, they boldly tell me that
though they feel weird and strange at times, they know in their
hearts that God is with them.
I learn from their focus, not on politics or hot
button issues, but on learning each others names and favorite
Above all, the greatest lesson Iíve learned from the children at
Vacation Bible School this week is accepting one simple truth: that
God loves me just as I am.
This makes me think of my favorite quote from Trappist monk Thomas
Merton who once said, ďTo say that I am made in the image of God
is to say that love is the reason for my existence, for God is love.
Love is my true identity. Selflessness is my true self. Love is my
true character. Love is my name.Ē
Indeed, Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.
But, Jesus too, loves 50+ children who wiggle and squirm, giggle and
worship, sing and dance, all because they know that God loves them.
[Pastor Adam Quine, First Presbyterian Church in Lincoln]