Scripture: Psalm 30
Key verses: (11-12)
11 You have turned my mourning into dancing;
you have taken off my sackcloth
and clothed me with joy,
12 so that my soul may praise you and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to you forever.
Reflection: Vacation Bible School is one of my favorite weeks of the year. Months of preparation, an army of disciples and leaders, the greatest youth in the world, and an incredibly accommodating church staff combine to share the love of God with over 200 children and families. This year we concentrated on Stories Jesus Told, and explored some of the parables of Jesus.
We learned that the love of God is spread widely like the Sower who scattered seed. When the seeds fell on good soil, they grew and grew into an abundant harvest. God’s love can grow in us and in the world when we listen and learn and love.
We learned that Jesus is like a good shepherd who searches for that one lost sheep, then carries it home and rejoices. He is like the woman who searches for her one lost coin until she finds it, then rejoices and celebrates. God never gives up on us, and rejoices when we are all together.
We learned that our neighbors are, well . . . everybody; and that sometimes God’s love and mercy comes from people and places we don’t expect. We marveled at the love of the Good Samaritan, and hope to live like him.
We learned that the Kingdom of God is like when a man gave a great banquet and made room at the table for people who don’t often get invited. Just like God’s table is open, so too is God’s kingdom.
The best part of every day for me is always our opening assembly, when the children come in and sing and dance. I am reminded that regardless of what else is happening, there is nothing more important than praising God. God indeed turns our mourning into dancing, and brings so much joy that we can’t be silent. I think everyone who was here for VBS still has the song stuck in our head: “All around the world, something’s going on, about Jesus’ love. It’s amazing!” Yes it is!
Prayer: God, we give you thanks for joy and for song. For stories Jesus told, and for his love which is amazing. Help us learn and grow, rejoice, and welcome others. May we be part of spreading your love and mercy wherever we are, and around the world. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
Author: Julie Hester
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].