Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” (Matt. 19:14).
We feel the desire to express the magnitude of the benefits the Vacation Bible School program has on our community as a church and that we personally observed as grandparents.
Our 5 year old granddaughter, Nabela, has a social interaction shyness behavior. We witnessed her hiding under her own kitchen table at her 4th birthday party and again during her recent kindergarten orientation.
As grandparents, we offered her to come to NCUCC’s VBS program involving the theme, “Super Heroes.” She readily accepted, if Gram and Pop Pop came too. The week of VBS came along with the tragic unexpected loss of our 38 year old son/step-son, in a motor vehicle accident. As grief tore through us, we wondered if we should even attempt to try to guide her while battered and worn ourselves. As grandparents, Matthew 19:14 ran out in our hearts. We knew it was a spiritual chance of new life for her and we went into the challenge. Day one she wouldn’t leave G-Ma’s side, but listened intently. Day #2, Pop Pop was her escort. She even did arts and crafts by herself. It all started with a foam mask and a shower curtain cape. She wore it home reciting, “Do good, seek peace, and go after it!” G-Ma and Pop Pop listened to that proudly for 14 miles nonstop. Day #3, she was not hiding under tables, but waiting on the deck fro us to arrive to pick her up. Days 4 & 5, she occasionally looked back at us with a smile and a smirk.
The staff and volunteers work didn’t go unnoticed. They noted her discomfort in a large group and divided the group. From opening music, arts and crafts, outdoor play, Bible story, science and snack, music and lights all worked together. Pop Pop even arranged a surprise visit from Captain America who talked to the kids, “My best weapon is my Bible. It’s living the word of God.”
The congregation that volunteered did a great job. They spiritually fed all these little souls. Each group reinforcing the same Bible topic theme. As we reflect on that week, we know VBS programs have a financial cost. This cost is nothing compared to its results. Day 4 & 5, we observed as little Nabela ran up front singing “Amen, amen, amen,” with hands in the air. Hands that were spiritually fed. G-Ma and Pop Pop have ministered and realize the importance of VBS programs. This year we observed it from a different angle.
Fast forward 2-1/2 months after VBS. We stopped in to see our grandkids unannounced. We were greeted by a 5 year old girl who has a sinful amount of toys to play with. She still was wearing that slightly torn shower curtain cape. Over her eyes was that foam mask with regular crosses that she proudly brought home long ago. We smiled at each other and asked, “Nabela where did you get the nice mask and cool cape?” She replied, “Don’t you remember? I got it from your church.” Then she proceeded to proudly recite, “Do good, seek peace and go after it!”
Kuddos to all who were involved. And to Pop Pop from G-Ma, thank you for stepping up to the plate at the worst time in your life. I will treasure this walk of youth fed spirituality forever. Matthew 19:14
Blessings, G-Ma and Pop Pop Hart
New Covenant’s ministries continue to transform lives. We thank you for your faithful and generous support that has made stories like this possible. We ask for your continued commitment to the sharing of your time, talents and treasures, so that our ministries and programs can continue to exist, make a difference and transform lives.