For those of you who don’t know, writing, publishing, etc. is not all I do. In fact, it’s the smallest sliver of the things I somehow got put in charge of. One of said “other things” is VBS–Vacation Bible School, if you, like me 9 years ago, have no clue what those letters stand for.
The short version of this story is that I’m in charge of skits, which are basically short plays (20 minutes each) of a Bible story. I work with the teenagers (definitely better than my stint with the preschoolers!). Each day we do a different story that fits with the theme of the day. I write the plays directly from the Bible filling in as I go. It is always a challenge, and one the Holy Spirit seems to put me into SOMETHING that looks impossible every year.
This year, it was the fact that VBS follows the day after my trip to Iowa. So I got back home yesterday, and this morning, I helped stage 5 performances, 20 minutes each. Today was Jesus and the Lepers. We did the same one last year, so because it was crazy hat day and because Chris (my most outgoing boy who was jazzed that VBS didn’t conflict with his scheduled trip to Europe… though he’s a high school junior BOY…) came with this HUGE green and silver leprechaun hat…. we had 9 lepers and one “leperchaun.”
The leperhaun was the one who came back, and boy, did the kids love that! It went very well.
We “only” have 4 days left of VBS, and I have to say that Jesus made those miracles look MUCH easier than they are even to stage. Tomorrow we have to come up with some type of paste for the “blind man’s” eyes that can wash off easily and not hurt. Wednesday we’re somehow going to get Peter to walk on water with a boat that I don’t yet have. Thursday brings out the big guns with the resurrection of Jesus (like I said, He made this stuff sound REALLY easy).
Then Friday comes. I got the biggest compliment this morning. One of the little first graders said, “Are you going to do the ring of fire again like last year?” (All excited.) That’s actually Friday’s play, so I told him he’d have to come back to see if we did an encore of that play.
The neatest thing about doing the plays is how those Bible stories are no longer just stories to me, or to my teens, or to the VBS kids. Many remember dancing in the hallway with Peter and Paul, throwing the glo-sticks over the wall with Gideon, when Paul fell out of the basket coming down the wall, the dove that descended from the clouds on the ceiling… and so many others.
My teens remember too. When we get together, we laugh ourselves silly. And today we had another one. As the lepers were being healed, each would jump up and run to the group who had already been healed all excited. Two of them went to do a double high five but in their excitement they missed hands, and one hit the other in the eye. The girl yelped in pain, grabbed her eye, and said, “Great! Now I have to get back in line!”
You’ve got to love VBS!
Check out the great summer reading at: http://www.spiritlightbooks.com You’ll be glad you did!