There’s a lot happening this summer and all of it shows up in various announcements and whatnot, but I’d like to tell you about it this way. First, Vacation Bible School approaches. VBS is an interesting phenomenon in church. It’s a time when we lay down all of our usual manners and formalities and we intentionally gear everything toward the next generation. To put in Pentecost terms, we’re speaking their language – brightly colored decorations, raucous songs with dance steps for busy little bodies, and stories full of opportunities for their imaginations to work – so that they can understand the Good News of Jesus Christ. VBS is a microcosm of what church is.
In addition to VBS, there are also Passport Camps that the older kids and the teens will be attending in the first week of July. Again, everything is geared toward their “language” and they are gathered with a bunch of other people in their age range, all learning and growing and bonding for a week. The adults who take them will no doubt be worn out by the endeavor, but my prayer is that they will be rewarded by deeper relationships with our young people. And I pray that these young people will make memories of church and faith that anchor them in their relationship with Christ for the years to come.
There will be a couple of new sermon series over the next few months. In another week, we’ll begin a series entitled “Mothers & Fathers” that will journey us through the characters of Genesis. So many times, we read the Bible as it if were a book of legends or even fairy tales, not because we don’t believe it, but because we think that it was a different circumstance. My hope is that we can see that these people were people, like us. Just because technology and cultural touchstones may have changed does not mean that we still don’t have the same struggles, hopes, concerns, and desires as our ancient ancestors.
I hope you are part of what’s happening this summer. I’d like to ask you to commit in some way. Be a part of VBS (talk to Gigi), volunteer for an activity with our young folks, make worship a priority, and above all pray for our church this summer. Pray that people would hear in their own language the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Pray that the Spirit would be active and powerful in our midst. Pray that God’s Kingdom would be built in Oak Ridge. Pray that you would be a part of it.