|Pirate Pals--Titus and his buddy, McLean|
The big challenge for us at East was to figure out a way to get the kids from Swannanoa to Arden. On day 1, we had a Young Bus and a church mini-bus. Yeah, that only lasted for Day 1, because we filled up the Young Bus and mini-bus with no problem. The rest of the week, we had 2 fabulous Young Buses to transport us in comfort and style back and forth. While this was an incredible blessing, it was also very challenging. The East Team worked hard to keep tabs on all of the kids and kept security as our main focus. Every day, I was coming home working on spreadsheets and lists for the next day to try and make our task a little more manageable. We had children as young as 2 all the way up to volunteers who were teenagers. My mindset was, "Each of these children are someone's baby, and I need to take care of them as if they were my own." With the exceptional help of my East team, we were able to pull of the week with minimal heartache, no losses, and quite a bit of stress.
VBS took up every minute of my time this past week. Every cell in my brain was frazzled. Every muscle in my body was tired. But, every morning, seeing those kids super excited to be getting on the bus and going to Arden was worth the discomfort. AND, the absolute best and most wonderful end result of VBS was the children who invited Jesus into their hearts. I believe the final number was 145 first time professions of faith. There were several children from East who asked Jesus to be in their lives. One of those was my little man, Titus! On Thursday, the children's pastor, Bill, shared the Gospel. I was honored to be an encourager to help document the changes in 3 sweet children's hearts. I was blown away when a friend came and told me that Titus has accepted Jesus! Any struggles or doubts I had faced during the week were completely obliterated by the indescribable joy of knowing my little boy knows Jesus on a personal level!!!
The wrap up to VBS was family night. During this time, we sang and danced to the music from the week, we visited with other families, we were entertained by the marvelous Dennis Lee, and we were able to celebrate baptisms. Titus was baptized Thursday night...it was incredible. I am so incredibly thankful to have the assurance that both of my children have Jesus living in their heart. I am already excited about next year's VBS. In spite of the stress and struggles, the blessing of being a part of children's lives in such a positive way overcomes! Knowing that I am allowed to be a piece of the puzzle of bringing children to Jesus is an honor that I simply cannot describe!