Friday, July 30, 2010
Flashback Friday-VBS Style
Did your family attend church when you were growing up? What are your earliest memories of church? Did you attend VBS (Vacation Bible School) when you were young? Sunday School? Other church activities? Was faith a Sunday-only thing or did it impact your life and the things you did? If faith and church were not a part of your growing-up years, when and how did you begin and what drew you to God?
Besides coming home from the hospital, the first place my parents took me was to church. My very earliest memories include the church grounds, classrooms, and the family of people I grew up amongst there.
I have a couple of photos to share, but they are of "Old Fashioned Days," so I'll have to wait to share those until they fit the topic. And boy-howdy, they are doozies.
VBS was an annual event for me, and I can still recall songs and Bible verses I learned at VBS. One song included a stop sign held up by the worship leader at just the moment we were supposed to sing "STOP! and let me tell you, what the Lord has done for meeeee." True to kid form, most of us yelled it out. You can see that any unsuspecting average Joe would definitely STOP in his tracks and turn from his wicked ways when a group of 100 kids yelled this song at him. Very effective evangelization.
Another vivid memory is of color-coded items like pencils which prompted you to remember the essence of Christian theology: black for sin, red for blood redemption, white for purity, etc.
I didn't always want to come in from playing and get cleaned up to go VBS every night, but once I got there, I was fine. I usually excelled at memorization if not singing, and so I won some awards, I'm sure.
But the best time of all was when we went outside for a break, where we would see a couple of long tables set up with various kinds of homemade cookies, paper napkins and cups of Koolaid, for some reason, usually grape flavored. My mom was not a baker, so these cookies were other-worldly treats. If I got really lucky, she would bring no-bakes, and I would get an extra.
Then we would play games outside. One impromptu game included rolling down a small hill on our church's property, log-roll style. The only problem was that I attended a church where all females wore skirts, so you can see that it became problematic to keep your skirt down at your sides and log roll, because with your hands glued to your sides, you just might log roll your face into a rock or brier weed.
So I remember the year my mom allowed me to wear shorts under my skirt.
Big doin's, that was.
I still have a fondness for the simplicity of my VBS experiences: no fancy puppets, videos or curricula. Just simple flannel graph lessons, crafts, including macaroni spray-painted gold glued to orange juice cans and bars of soap turned into sailboats, some foil stars to mark achievement, and a feeling of safety and security in the realm of my little church world, which was my second home.
Thanks for the memories, Lid! Maybe my grandchild will enjoy reading this someday!