I don’t like change. Good change, bad change, it doesn’t matter. In my head change is overrated.
And while most of the time it is unconscious, just like the people in the Gospel of Luke asking and wanting more signs from God, I too find myself putting God in a box. I want to know the water is safe before I try to walk on it. I want to see the Promised Land before I set out.
Last year we had the privilege of hosting 251 kids for our Vacation Bible School: Boot Camp. It was a wonderful, joyful time.
This year we matched the opening of last year, and – to my huge surprise – we filled up our VBS spots in record speed. We had 86 kids register on day one, 138 kids on day two, and 190 kids on day three. Fast forward, and by day nine we had all 247 spots filled, all grades maxed out (minus one) and 10 kids on a waitlist!
(Now I know God created the world in seven days, but I’m a slow to warm personality, and this response from the neighborhood was staggering!)
While watching the spots fill up, it brought me equal joy and concern.
Joy at how excited children are to come learn about Jesus and grow in their faith. Concerned that we hadn’t even started advertising at schools, downtown and at businesses where often we encounter the kids who might not know Jesus.
I sat in this tension, saying “if this, then that” statements in regards to volunteers and capacity. If I could just work it out on paper and come up with a plan that makes sense to me, THEN we could open up more spots for the kids I had yet to invite.
The Spirit has been working in me about this, and in the tension of holding joy and concern at the same time. It came to a head earlier this week and God convicted me of leading with calculated risk.
He reminded me of how He has been at work among us.
In the past months the Lord has . . .
- brought new families of all ages to us on Sunday mornings
- raised more than $6,000 for Camp IDRAFOJE through Spring Showcase
- nearly broken our VBS registration with people clamoring to sign up (thankfully we don’t use Ticketmaster as our portal bahahaha)
- paid off our mortgage!God’s done all of that, and STILL like a flighty dumb dumb, I was like just give us volunteers and THEN we can rock and roll and open the flood gates. Ever been there before?
Thankfully, we serve a gracious, patient God, who never rolls His eyes when we lose sight of priorities. Just a tender God who reminds us of who He is and how He can do exceedingly more than we ever imagined.
So today we are stepping out in faith! I’m opening up 100 more VBS spots.
We are going to Glendora’s Earth Day celebration on Saturday to hand out flyers. We are going to put posters at schools and buckle in for what God has planned.
This year’s VBS theme, “Pump It Up,” was designed to inspire kids to be people who build boats in deserts and never sway from trusting God’s promises. Looks like this year’s theme is for all ages.
Church of the Open Door family, will you join me in prayer?
- Will you pray that God brings all of the kids who need to be here?
- Will you pray for opportunity to connect and share this Saturday at Earth Day?
- Will you pray that my faith to lead will be louder than my head that is risk avoidant?
- Will you pray that we remain humble and nimble to pivot as God guides?
- Will you pray for unity and for the Spirit to pave the way?
- Will you pray for an army of brothers and sisters of all ages and abilities to link arms with us and pour into the kids?We wait with great expectation for summer adventures with Jesus in 2023.
P.S. Jesus tells us that the work of proclaiming God’s kingdom is dangerous. It takes courage. It demands earnest prayer. It’s more about the faith than the giftedness, and requires no resources other than those God provides. It’s a high stakes spiritual battle, using supernatural weapons. Anyone who’s willing to engage the fight on this level is needed for the cause. Such an adventurer will reap a rare mix of power, humility and wide-eyed joy. –Jack Klumpenhower
Would you consider signing up to be an adventurer with me and the VBS team? Join the frontlines today as a volunteer at VBS!