Guest blogger here, Alissa!
This past week my evenings were filled with games, singing, crafts and learning about the Bible! We had City Kids Evening Camp and it was a blast! Our nights went something like this:
1. Kids entered and caught each other up on their first days of summer.
2. We did a minute-to-win-it game normally involving two volunteers and a crazy game of bouncing, throwing, sticking or catching an item within a minute!
3. We sat down and watched "Phil and friends" from What’s in the Bible.
4. We danced and learned a worship song.
5. We went outside, or stayed in depending on weather, and played games.
6. We came back all sweaty and tired for a snack.
7. We did an awesome craft.
8. We played a review game to answer questions about what we learned.
9. We said our “See ya laters” and went home.
Phew, that may not seem like too crazy of a week. It might even sound like some of your day-to-day schedules with children. But when you take 12 kids and three or four leaders and put them in a room all together, it can get a little wild. Keeping up with all of these kids was not easy, but at the end of the night we all looked at each other and said, “Great job, team. See you again tomorrow!” We knew that the role we played in the lives of these kids was way more than just teaching some silly songs, leading a crazy game and showing them a new craft; we were pouring into their lives with the words we used, the love we showed and the Bible lessons we taught each night.
The videos from What’s in the Bible taught the kids and the leaders a lot about the Bible itself. We learned about the Old Testament and New Testament. We learned about how sin entered the world and messed everything up, but how God made a rescue plan and sent his son Jesus so that we could be free from sin. We also learned how we can be forgiven because of Jesus and that we need to go tell others they are forgiven too. Each day the kids learned more as they enjoyed the puppets and the songs from the video. At the end of the week the kids were given a journal to complete with their families throughout the summer. This helped make what they learned last even longer, as they can now have conversations together with their families.
We also had a service project on the last day of camp. There is an organization we are partnering with this summer called the Christian Community Center. On the last day of camp we made backpacks for the kids that go to the center. Our kids loved picking what notebook and folder they thought the child would want to receive. They also decorated bookmarks with pictures and notes to put in the backpacks. The love that they showed for kids they didn’t even know amazed me! They may never meet the children who will receive the backpacks, but that didn’t matter to them; they just wanted to serve.
My favorite memory was from Wednesday. The kids started to become just a little too comfortable with each other, and were a little crazier than we’d seen earlier that week. Nonetheless, I had a job to do and they had songs they needed to learn. The one we learned the previous day was “One Way Jesus” by Hillsong Kids. We went over it again on Wednesday and I was taken aback as I watched them sing and dance. I was in awe as all of these kids were jumping up and down shouting/singing, “One way, Jesus! You’re the only one that I could live for.” They may be a crazy bunch, but in that moment they were crazy for Jesus.
What more can we ask as we pray for this generation, but that they would see God as the only way, and the only one they want to live for! At the end of the week, no matter how tired we were, we knew that God was with us there at camp. He was with every child and every volunteer that week, and that’s all we need. Thank you for your prayers for us and for the children! I hope the kids had just as much fun, and probably more, as I did last week!
What a great start to summer!