Jul 9, 2007

Vacation Bible School, Lori, Fish Head and a Bracelet

Our church's Vacation Bible School began today. For the past several years, I've volunteered to be an assistant to my friend Lori. You probably have a Lori in your church--the organizing maniac. Lives to teach Sunday School....wouldn't THINK of not staying up all night on Saturday until she's gone through the lessons front, back and sideways. That's our Lori. Add one more element that I think is kind of unique for a control-freak like her, add great big kid at heart. And THAT's why I teach with Lori, because she really does it for the kids (and entertains me as well!).

Lori begins the VBS year early, planning, plotting, putting dibs on our room! Although she failed this year, we got into trouble from the neighbors next to us and below us for being too loud. We really need a downstairs room next time!

I just do as she says. She likes it when I look silly and she's kind enough to admit it! A few years back, she made me play a fish for one of our stories. I was in my sewing room for days cramming the big foam pieces covered in fabric through my sewing machine, adding ping pong ball eyeballs and cutting a slit in the bottom of a cathouse shaped like a fish. She threw a gold coin (chocolate) into my fish mouth and made me run into the room like a fool day after day with a giant fish stuck to my head as she brilliantly unravelled the story.

This year, sports. So because I have pom poms, I get to be Pom Pom Polly. I was at Kohls late Friday scanning the sales racks for some knit sports skirts that weren't too short, thinking 'why do I let her talk me into this everytime?'. Today, showtime, I did some fun chants with the kids and they got into it--even the boys! I put on the long robe, pretended to speak a foreign language, held up a flame made of tissue paper as a strong wind (created by Lori putting a fan in my face) started. They laughed. Lori gets to abuse me like this for one week out of every year. I did refuse to do the pigtails--not that I have anything against pigtails, but I will NOT be seen driving across town with them at my age!

So how did I know our antics were successful, that the kids trusted us? Their smiling faces, the kindness they showed each other. And of course when they come back from crafts (one of the craft moms, incidentally, is my g/f, Cat) with an ankle bracelet, "hidden" behind their backs to give me in our room. Think I'll wear it until it falls apart. In my mind it's so important at this age to reach them, to know they associate church with a loving environment, with fun, with safety to say anything they need to say.

I'm sure in my heart that's what Jesus would want--he didn't keep to himself, and he certainly spent time enveloping the people who hadn't yet been saved with open arms and a loving attitude, despite their past or present.

I seriously love that little church, because I know no matter who comes, they will find open arms. I saw this firsthand, I brought a homeless man to their front door not long ago, sat next to him as he ate with all of us, as he talked to people who genuinely cared who he was, and was taken to a safe place, out of the winter storm. That's another story, but it's a very good one!


Anonymous said...

I loved reading this. You are such a great person. I can tell this by your gift from the kids. Enjoy being silly and reaching kids this week at VBS! And at least wear the pig tails on the last day. ;)

Ethan said...


Great story! That's exactly how I feel being with the youth and leading worship. To make the connection with the kids, knowing that they are connecting with their Creator...WOW!

Cat said...

I had a blast today, I am whooped though. I was there throughout the whole Soccer camp also. so I worked on a project for tomorrows crafts. UGH. THEN I came home and Mowed the backyard! I will sleep good tonight!

I love my bracelet! I guess yours was a bit big huh? so you have to wear on your ankle? Looks cute on ya!

pinks & blues girls said...

This is such a great story, Stacey. I can just imagine how much fun you would be to have around as a helper in VBS - or anywhere!! :)

Don't you just love when you KNOW you're connecting with little kids? They're just very special little beings!

Jane, P&B Girls

Anonymous said...

I guess you lucked out on having to do the pig tails. We've already had VBS. :)

Bubba's Sis said...

I worked VBS for years and years when my kids were younger - it is the most exhausting - and rewarding - experience!!! Sounds like you are having a blast! And I'm with d - at least do the pig tails on the last day. Too fun! And you are touching little lives in ways you may never know. God is smiling on you tonight, girlfriend.

Would love to hear your story of the homeless man sometime.

Girl Gone Wild said...

I can SO see you picking up a homeless man and bringing him to church with you. You have no boundaries whatsoever, do you? That's awesome, Stacey. I wish I was more trusting and open as you.

Kim said...

After just doing our VBS and being the craft guru I understand everything you said here. You couldn't have said it better. In fact I'm still wearing my bracelet. It's so fun to see those kids in church now. They come up and give me a great big hug and then show me their bracelet.

I still say it takes a special person to volunteer to do VBS! You are one special person. Keep it up the whole week. The kids will love you and Jesus even more for it.

Sharon said...

What? No photo of Pom Pom Polly?!? It sounds like you had so much fun! I've never done a VBS before but I'm sure I would like it as I love working with the kids in our church. I always think its such a priveledge to be able to help teach them about Jesus.

Your church family sounds wonderful, much like the church home I have found. I hope you'll share the story of the homeless man on your blog someday soon.

Pinks & Blues Girls said...

I can't get over you... you are just the sweetest and most fun person!!! I wish I had a Stacey over here near us! I love the fish costume idea... love it!! Is there anything you wouldn't do for someone you love??

And as always... great MUSIC!!

Pinks & Blues Girls

Simone ( Exercising for comments) said...

That's absolutely great. Its been so long since I have been involved with Vacation Bible school. I miss it.

mAsOn & tErrI's mOm said...

Yep we have a Lori.."Lori" is driving everyone nuts so coo coo with her maticulous planning. But we love her too!

The Young Family said...

Found your site through Top Momma.com Love the song! One of my favorite groups! Great site keep up the wonderful stories.

Shana said...

Hi, Found you though Wordless W. I am preparing for Game Day Central right now. Starts on the 22nd. I just love VBS. By the way great WW pics.