This past week was our church's Vacation Bible School. However, rather than being on campus, we do our Bible School at people's houses. This is our second year in a row to do this, and this is my second year in a row to be a host home. Most people use their backyard for it, but my shade is better in the front, so we tend to stay there. We had about 20 children with us this week, and we had a great time! The kids were all ones I know (from church, school, soccer, dance, preschool), and we had a blast! All week long I had parents telling me how much the kids were learning and how they all said they were having so much fun. It was such a blessing to do, and I am grateful I said "yes."
You see, a few months ago, I was fairly certain that I wasn't going to host this year. A friend had asked me, and I told her I just wasn't feeling it. But then one Sunday, God spoke to my heart about the children I know who don't know Jesus, and I couldn't get it out of my mind. That Sunday after church, I found my friend and told her, "I think I've changed my mind." And from that point on, I didn't look back. I know God had me as a host home this year for a reason. I know that there were people at my house last week who don't know Jesus as their Lord and Savior, and I know that they were able to hear about Him and how He loves them and how they can be a part of God's family. I also know that the kids were learning truths through music: Our God is a great big God and He holds us in His hand and through Scripture: Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me. (John 14:6) The Truth was told, and God's Word does not return void, so I trust that He will use our week of Backyard Bible Beach Blast for His glory.
Some of my favorite tidbits from the week include:
A mom told me she asked her son the first day if he made any new friends, and he said, "Oh, I forgot to because I was having so much fun!"
Another mom told me she and her child were memorizing the Scripture verses together, and he was correcting her if she missed even a word. This is a family that rarely attends church--and hadn't at all until a couple years ago.
One of the kids wrote on her water bottle, "Best week ever!"
Another one, who has only been in church once in her life, wrote on hers, "I love Jesus!"
When I asked at the end of the week what their favorite Bible story was, they couldn't decide because they liked them all so much.
Then, when I asked if they would change anything, they couldn't think of anything because they said it was all so fun.
Yesterday, a neighbor across the street came over and told me how she had enjoyed singing along with the children all week while she was out in her yard and how it had touched her heart.
It isn't easy to step out of the comfortable and host a Bible club at your house. It is tiring, it takes work, and it "puts you out there" with your faith in your neighborhood...but I promise you, it is worth it. For any blessing those children received, I think I received ten-fold that blessing. I know there are stories that I have yet to hear about what God did last week, but I know this: God is alive and active and He is here. He rewards those who earnestly seek Him, and I feel that reward in full after a week like I just had. All praise to the Father for the things He has done!