I’m sure you’ve heard the old expression: “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” At first glance, that makes no sense. But if you’ve observed life very much you realize how true that statement can be.
I bring that up in a world that is rapidly changing, and usually for the worse. In recent months, it seems we have seen a constant unraveling of the very fabric of our nation, and an undermining of value systems that have lasted for generations. The cultural upheaval that we are facing has left many of us reeling, wondering what is coming next.
It is at times like these when something so old-fashioned as a Vacation Bible School comes as a breath of fresh air. To watch so many kids with their childlike faith singing, playing, doing crafts and quoting Scripture together reminds you that not all is wrong in this world, and that there is rock-solid hope, even if when it seems there is chaos on every side.
Our children have had a blast this week, and our VBS leaders and staff once again did a great job planning a fun and creative theme that filtered into every area of our Bible School. More than anything, it has centered around the key word in that title–the Bible. Our primary objective, amidst all the craziness and fun we’ve had, is to teach children the word of God and introduce them to a relationship with Jesus Christ. He is the only hope for transformation not just for us but for the generation to come.
And yet, for our Bible school in 2015, the more things stay the same, the more they change. We teach the same Bible we’ve always taught, but we do so using all the creative means we can, pointing kids to never-changing truth in an ever-changing world. Ask your child how they learned the story of Jonah and you won’t hear about a felt-board. They will probably describe their trip through the esophagus of a big fish–including all the sounds of digestion and all the smells you would expect on the inside of a fish!
The point is, the God who led Jonah to bring the message of repentance to Nineveh thousands of years ago is the same God who calls each of us–including these blessed children–to believe and to share the hope of the gospel of Jesus Christ today. He “is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) The more things change, the more they stay the same.
My prayer is that the children and workers who have been a part of our Vacation Bible School this week will each allow God to change our lives through His word, and that we’ll become instruments of change to our generation.
I count it such a privilege to be a part of such a wonderful faith family, and I look forward to seeing each of you on Sunday.