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On Your Mark, Get Set… Run the Race

June 15th 2012 No comments yet  

 I’ve had the privilege of volunteering with the fifth and sixth graders of Junction 56 this week at VBS 2012: The Race is On. I must be allowed to brag about this ministry for a moment! The depth of the teaching, as well as the receptiveness of the students, has blown me away this week. Pastor Joe and all of the volunteers are so intentional about teaching the kids to take ownership and responsibility for growing in their walk with Christ.

Sitting on the floor in the midst of more than 100 preteens, I found myself listening just as intently as they were.  Sure they’re energetic fifth and sixth graders who love finger rocket wars and snack time””but when it’s time to worship, listen to the message, or memorize their Bible verses, they are just as eager to participate.

This week, Pastor Joe used I Corinthians 9:26 and Hebrews 12:1-2 to teach the preteens about running the race. Hebrews 12:1-2 says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Joe told the kids that there are three different types of people in the world: those who aren’t in the race at all, those who get distracted or run aimlessly in the race, and finally, there are focused racers who want to please and serve Jesus Christ. The students (and volunteers) were then challenged with the question, “What kind of racer are you?”

As we huddled in our small groups after the message, you could see the hunger in many kids’ eyes. Most of them either wanted to know how they could join the race or run better and more purposefully. Last night, one of the boys in our group openly said, “What if I’m not in the race?” The Holy Spirit was at work in his heart. By the end of the evening, that young man joined the race. Praise God!

Serving this week was a real and awesome reminder of why all of us are here. Every song, skit, finger-rocket war, small-group session, and poster printed are used to tell others about the race and encourage them to “fix their eyes on Jesus.”


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