SHELBYVILLE, IL. —
Why are Vacation Bible Schools important?
It's that time of year again. You see signs on the street, advertisements in the paper, and flyers on your windshield. All of them are asking you to let your children come to their church’s Vacation Bible School. I have not always been on the Vacation Bible School bandwagon, but this year I jumped on!
Vacation Bible Schools (VBS) are important for a variety of ways, but most notably, they are important because they share the gospel to many kids. This is the main goal of any VBS, to share the gospel in a way that children can understand, and for them to come to have faith in Christ. By doing that we as a church will be able to talk with their families, explain the decision that was made, what is the next step for the youngster, and help the families in the new change that will come to their house and their children's life.
Every Christian should have a love for reaching the lost in the community and beyond, and VBS is the greatest one week intensive way to reach those who do not know Christ. Look at the statistics for Southern Baptist's in 2009 (the latest year statistics are available); around 25, 000 churches had a VBS program, 2.8 million children attended, 88, 410 professions of faith given, around 265,000 prospects for church (children and their families), and 49,500 of those prospects started coming to church. These numbers do not lie, there are people in our communities that need to hear the name of Jesus and VBS is a way to do it.
Churches are not immune to the fact that we have some kids that hop from one VBS to another all summer long so their parents have a lot of date nights, and frankly we don't care. The more times we share the gospel with your child, the more likely they are to accept him. We as churches want to love on your kids, share Jesus with them, and even show the parents what it means to be a Christian.
If you go to a church that has a VBS this summer, get involved. It will be more of a blessing to you than it will be to them. If you know of a family that does not go to church and has young kids, get them plugged in to a local VBS, this is a great first step into getting their family in church. We just had our VBS last week and it was phenomenal! Our volunteers were great, the gospel was shared, and people made a commitment to the Lord. We hope and pray that this community will be changed for the Lord and it could all start with VBS.
Chase Smith is the pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church in Shelbyville. For more information from Chase or the church call 774-3636 or visit www.fellowshipinshelbyville.com.