We are smack dab in the middle of VBS season. Churches all across the country are spending ridiculous amounts of money to make their church look like anything other than a house of worship. Volunteers have spent countless hours learning dance moves and making costumes for this magical week. Teenagers have been recruited as leaders to chaperon kids to their classes. Some poor woman has been gilt tripped into supervising the arts and crafts class this year. May God have mercy on her soul.
Some of the kids are starting to repeat the same VBS themes. Try as they may, churches have limited options for VBS materials. Not every church can be the first one to do the jungle, the desert, or the arctic. Even you were the first, somebody else had pony rides after you. Grumbles of â€śWe made this at the last churchâ€ť and â€śIâ€™m tired of singing this songâ€ť are becoming common among 7 year old seasoned VBS veterans. Donâ€™t let those complaints of â€śthe last church had better snacksâ€ť get you down. Just know the momâ€™s and dadâ€™s everywhere are thankful for your sacrifice so they can enjoy a few quite hours around the house each evening. Bonus points if you fed them supper.
Letâ€™s not overlook the economic impact of this religious rite of passage. It reaches far deeper that the millions made by the publishers. Grocery stores are selling out of the weird ingredients used for snacks. Now we need to gas up and drive to another Walmart for our polar bear poop cookies. The USPS is also cashing in as dozens of different mail-outs are being sent to every home within a 20 mile bus ride of the church. Oriental Trading has hired temporary help to handle the increased demand for their trinkets. Better throw a new set of tires on the church van while your at it. Many volunteers have called in sick to work and some have taken the whole week off.
I anticipate that some of you are fighting mad about my negative comments pertaining to your sacred cow. Thatâ€™s alright, Iâ€™ve been called a Scrooge before. Iâ€™m only saying what millions of worn out church folks wish they could say. Oh, I hear ya â€śWe are doing it for the kidsâ€ť or â€śIf it just saves one then it was all worth it.â€ť Nice try, but itâ€™s not about the kids, itâ€™s about traditions and keeping up with the other churches. Secondly, if you spent $1000â€™s of dollars to save one child, Christianity is a failure and not financially sustainable.
Be honest and call it what it is, a Vacation. Just drop the words Bible School because they have become irrelevant in this week long waste of Godâ€™s money. I know there are exceptions to what Iâ€™ve said but you know that they are few and far between. Bible School is cheap and easy to do. Vacations not so much.
I have been largely detached from Southern Baptist politics for the last 10 years. When I entered the ministry in 2006, I had dreams of preaching at the state meeting and making a name for myself in the Convention. My dreams hit a snag in 2007...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
My phone has rang ever since the news broke that there was a weak spot in the Yoestown levee a couple miles from our home. The National Guard has been dropping 500 lb sand bags on it from a helicopter. Emergency management blocked off the road...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
Okay, I admit it, I got sucked into the drama Thursday. It began with two barges breaking free and floating down the Arkansas river Wednesday night. The news was warning everyone down stream of Webberâ€™s Falls that the dam could be taken out. I...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
We had tickets to a Razorback football game and we had about an hour to eat supper before heading to the stadium. My boss was taking a few employees out to dinner and the game for a bonus. He wanted to take us somewhere nice but the place he had...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
What do some churches have in common with a hotel breakfast? Technically both meet their respective definitions as a breakfast or a church. Yet both lack nutritious and fail to satisfy. Letâ€™s look at that free hotel breakfast first. It usually has...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
I was driving across Iowa on a family vacation and I was the only one in the car who wasnâ€™t snoring at the time. The traffic was light as the interstate gently rolled thru the barren land. Thereâ€™s not much to see in Iowa other than a hundred...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
I felt like a school girl shopping for a prom dress. I stood in front of the register staring at the menu on the wall for what seemed like an eternity. Ordering BBQ shouldnâ€™t be this hard for me considering that Iâ€™m a third degree black belt in...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
I picked up the TV remote in my hotel room anticipating catching up on my favorite shows. We donâ€™t have satellite or cable TV at our house so I rely on motel stays to keep me up to date. This usually works out because they air reruns all day...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
About 4 or 5 years ago a preacher approached me after I finished my sermon at a conference and said â€śYouâ€™re a big God preacher.â€ť At first I thought he was accusing me of arrogance. I had to stop for a minute and repeat what he said in my mind. He...[ abbreviated | read entire ]