Well, our church barrels enthusiastically toward our summer children’s ministry highlight, VBS. We kick-off Sunday evening and meet daily through Thursday, commencing with Family Night celebration on Thursday night. That evening the parents experience a Worship rally, watch a VBS “summary of the week in pictures” video, kids share music learned and we adjourn to tables laden with homemade cookies and ice cream. As youth and children’s director, I anticipate a great week. Our VBS staff works diligently to ready themselves for a special week with kids. I also anticipate spiritual attack…
Over the last four years, during the week of VBS, key workers in our children’s ministry have undergone familial trials. Heartaches include my sister-in-law’s brain injury, my son’s cancer, my pastor’s mother’s passing, and this year our stage set designer’s sister faces an inoperable heart condition, and my 89-year old grandmother slipped on wet steps yesterday, breaking her hip and collarbone. Yes, the attacks come regularly during VBS.
Am I whining? No.
Yes, these added stressors weigh heavily on those undergoing the trial, but here’s how I see it. Satan considers Vacation Bible School a threat to his diablolical endeavor to steal the hearts of our children. Statistics share that 80% of all people coming to Christ do so before age 18. In fact, Lifeway Christian Resources, of the Southern Baptist Convention, lists the following facts about VBS in its “Amazing Wonders Aviation” Director’s guide:
- In 2010 over 2.7 million people were enrolled in Vacation Bible Schools
- Over 83,000 decisions to accept Christ as Savior were reported as a result of VBS
- More than 2,600 people committed to church-related vocations during VBS
- Over 240,000 prospects were discovered
- Over 33,000 people were enrolled in Sunday School as a result of attending VBS
- VBS is the single largest outreach event for most churches
- About 25 percent of baptisms are the result of VBS
- More people have come to know Jesus as Savior through VBS than through any other single outreach event.
No wonder the enemy bares his fangs when the church opens its doors for Vacation Bible School. The Bible shares, “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” (I Peter 5:12) When facing fiery opposition we sometimes buckle under the pressure, asking the age-old question, “Why me?” However, think about it this way.
Satan ignores mediocrity.
If he sees you as a menace to his agenda, expect an occasional assault. James 1:2-3 says, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.”
To my VBS team and all of you preparing to wage war for the souls of children in Vacation Bible Schools across the nation, expect attack. Spend some time meditating on the whole armor of God found in Ephesians chapter 6. Pray for each other. Brace for battle. Spiritual warfare is alive and well.
But so is Jesus, the King of kings and Lord of lords. The victory is ours!