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Shipwrecked... But Jesus Rescues!

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What a week! Over 500 kids ranging from the littlest of these to a little older ones attended this year’s Vacation Bible School! The theme was “Shipwrecked: Rescued By Jesus!” We were stranded on an island all week but learned daily from God’s Word that amidst being lonely, worried, struggling, doing wrong, and especially when we feel powerless, Jesus rescues!

As I have been reflecting on this past weeks experience, I have three major joys to give God thanks and praise:

  1. Intergenerational Relationships Developed: There was great power seen in having older adults lead younger children around from station to station. Different age groups prayed together, ate together and sang together. Many high school and junior high students now have little kids looking up at them saying, “Thank you for teaching me about Jesus this week!” We pray these relationships continue long term past last week into the courtyard, worship spaces and into the community. What a joy to grow together!
  2. A Crew of Servant Leaders Raised Up: Every single person that served at Vacation Bible School was an incredible gift to our church. We couldn’t have done this without YOU! The countless hours, energy expelled, and eternal investment each of you showed these children was a  God sighting! The leadership team helped raise the bar this year to allow room for another 100 children to come hear the truth about our God who loves all people. From the security team to the trash team, from the games leaders to the go to band members, from the shepherds to the sound booth, from the crafty crew leaders to the spectacular station leaders across the high seas, you all deserve a nap, a high five and a praise Jesus shout out! Thank you to the 227 servant leaders for helping your community neighbors this week by showing hundreds of children what love is all about: Jesus! What a joy to serve together!
  3. Seeds of Faith Were Sown for Our Captain, Jesus: We heard about dozens of kids who had never been to church or heard about Jesus. Gospel seeds were sown to them as they heard the good news that Jesus rescues them from the lonely island of sin and death. We hope those seeds of faith are watered into the future through our church, children’s ministry, school and disciples like you. What a joy to share the Gospel!

Bre Zapytowski, on the VBS core leadership team reflected, “My experience with serving has been two fold: First, it has taught me how to have grace and let things go that don't matter, and to focus on the only thing that does matter: Jesus and pointing others to Him. I still have a lot to learn, but I love that I get to show kids how easy it is to love Jesus, and how much he loves us. I am not perfect, but strive to be better each year. I have gained so much valuable experience from those who have gone before me. I have learned so much from Mandy, MaryAnn, DCE Annie, Pastors Jake and Tim over these last 3 years serving. And I work to put those skills to use in other areas of ministry the rest of the year. Next, setting the example of serving for my own kids is important to me. It is powerful to have my own children see me working to create a place for other kids to experience Jesus like they have. I hold precious, every interaction in my heart all year. Jesus changes lives through the VBS week for those attending and those serving!”

Mary Ann Barnhardt, also on the core leadership team told me, “Every year there is a song that the kids really love to sing. This year it was “My Lighthouse!” Usually it’s an upbeat song with great actions. During Cave Quest we sang a slower song called, “Light of the World” and the actions were really simple. But listening to and watching 350 kids, in the Life Center, singing “He is the light, light,light - Light of the world and He shines, shines, shines all over the earth... “ just filled my heart to overflowing. And just thinking about it fills me with great emotion as we served again this year at Shipwrecked VBS 2018.  Those moments are why I’ve been a part of VBS at Christ’s Greenfield since 2004.”

Thank you church for your support, generosity and prayers for VBS 2018! Check out our most likely VBS theme for next summer - ROAR!...Life is Wild - God is good! I am proud to be one of your pastors! It is a joy to serve with you!

God is good...Jesus rescues!