Today’s article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Brother Rich Nath discovers an interesting connection between an old memory and a recent experience.
All throughout my toddler and school-age years, I attended VBS in the Monongahela Branch. Every summer, there was a weeklong series of lessons on a particular theme.
My great-great aunt, Sister Mabel Bickerton, planned many, many VBS lessons for all age groups that covered people, events, or in one case, a specific item. Back in 1980-something, when I was in my early grade-school years, the VBS theme was about the armor of God. We studied the pieces and their meanings throughout the week, ending with a program on Friday night where we sang the songs and displayed the pieces of armor.
Now, this was before you could buy VBS in a kit, if you will, and it was before personal computers, so you couldn’t just print something. The armor was handcrafted out of poster board, tape, and aluminum foil. Then, there had to be someone to wear it. As you can see, that honor fell on yours truly. I remember standing at the front of the auditorium where my classmates put the armor on me piece by piece, explaining what each one represented. Then, at last, the armor was complete, and I kept it on for a few more minutes for pictures in the Sunday school room.
This memory really came alive earlier this year during my ordination and the experience that was had that Sunday morning (You can read this blog post about it.) My mother was quick to remember the events of Vacation Bible School, and it brought the memory to the forefront. Back then, I wore a representation of the armor. Today, it’s the real thing.
We don’t walk around with physical helmets, shields, and swords, but we need to be clothed with the whole armor of God each and every day. There are way too many things in this world that want to destroy us spiritually, and the scriptures tell us we’ll be protected with it on.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:13-17)
What are your favorite memories from Vacation Bible School?
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.