Caldwell Kids Join King's Court at Gem State Academy Church
"How do we know Jesus is real, that He came to earth to save us and give us a plan for our lives?" asked Sami Nelson, tribal leader, the first night of Vacation Bible School.
"I know because I saw the movie 'Nativity Story,'" came the quick reply from one girl.
"But where did that story come from?" Nelson asked.
"Well, I got it at Hollywood Video," answered the girl.
Although this particular girl probably knew better and just misunderstood the question, in our high-tech, entertainment-driven society, one might wonder whether a program like Vacation Bible School is relevant.
At Gem State Academy Church, as in many churches around the valley, members have decided that yes, VBS is still an important ministry. In 2007, Jamie Miller, GSA Church member and Caldwell Adventist Elementary School fifth- and sixth-grade teacher, planned and led out in church's first VBS without prior experience.
This year John LaFond accepted the leadership challenge. The theme, Castles and Crowns, taught an important spiritual lesson learned from a different biblical king or queen each evening. Crafts, games, and even snacks all tied in to the royal theme, and by the end of the week, everyone knew Jesus was the King of Kings and each of them were adopted into his royal family.
In the weeks leading up to the VBS, LaFond and others passed out over 400 fliers in area neighborhoods. By the end of the week, 23 children attended. As an added blessing, several church youth had an opportunity to serve and shine for Jesus either assisting or leading out in games, crafts and skits.