VBS is over! And I am so glad. That was quite the learning experience. Let me tell you, it's definitely different being on the planning/leadership side of VBS than it is being on the volunteer side of things. I guess it went well - I mean, no one got hit by a bus or left behind at the Science Centre or anything. The kids had fun.
I had a memorable conversation with a little girl of six or seven years. We were standing in line together during the family BBQ. Allow me to post an approximate transcript of what transpired.
Me: So, what's been your favourite part of daycamp so far?
Esther: Mm... I don't know. I like all of it, except for that one song we sometimes sing.
Me: Which song?
Esther: The one where we march at the beginning.
Me: On the March? Well, that's interesting. Most kids love that song.
Esther: I don't like the army. Canada already has an army.
Me: But this is God's army, so that's better than Canada's army.
Esther: I think it's worse.
Esther's dad: Why is it worse, honey?
Esther: Because you get killed more often.
Esther's dad: No, in God's army you have eternal life. In the normal army you just die once, and that's it, caput. In God's army, you live forever with Jesus.
Esther: But I don't think God even has an army.
Me: Sure He does! He's got a really big army.
Esther: But that's not until the end, when everybody dies.
At this point Esther's dad smiled half-sheepishly and half-proudly, explaining that they had been studying the book of Revelations.
Anyways, I thought it was quite cute. And also quite impressive that a kid going into grade 2 this fall would be so well versed in Biblical knowledge and already thinking seriously about theological issues.
The aspiring psychologist in me noted that at her age, Esther is still in the concrete operational stage of mental development. Thus, it's probably our fault that she mistook the metaphor of a spiritual army for a physical reality. I wonder how many more kids have been led astray by that line of thought...
"Brethren, do something; do something, do something! While societies and unions make constitutions, let us win souls. I pray you, be men of action all of you. Get to work and quit yourselves like men. Old Suvarov's idea of war is mine: `Forward and strike! No theory! Attack! Form a column! Charge bayonets! Plunge into the center of the enemy! Our one aim is to win souls; and this we are not to talk about, but do in the power of God!" Charles H. Spurgeon