This week was our VBS (Vacation Bible School). We had kids of all ages attend. Some that we see often and many that seem to only make the annual appearance during VBS. With all the hours and days of set up, planning, and resources put into such an event, it is often questioned, “Is it all worth it?” I believe the answer is unequivocally, “Yes!” Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is older he will not depart from it.”
One lesson for the week was about King Josiah. Scripture tells us that, “He did right in the sight of the Lord, …” (2 Chron. 34:2). What is amazing about Josiah is that his father and grandfather both did “evil in the sight of the Lord” (33:2, 22). Despite this, Josiah did not follow after them, but learned from their mistakes. Upon the discovery of the book of the Law, this young king realized that they had been facing God’s judgment because of the total disregard of His word by his fathers (34:21). We are told that at a young age Josiah “began to seek the God of his father David” (34:3).
What was it that caused this king to be different from his father and grandfather? There are many possibilities. But there is one major piece that I feel made a huge impact. Josiah became king at the age of eight. He wasn’t raised by his father. Thus, someone else taught him about the Lord, in addition to how bad his forefathers had been as leaders and servants of God’s people. He learned at a young age that there is an Almighty God who loves His creation, but who also has expectations of them. Perhaps if Josiah’s father would have lived longer, and had a chance to negatively influence his son, then history would have been different.
Is VBS worth it? Absolutely! Even if certain kids do only come once a year (we hope they will come more), they are being influenced and taught at a young age the ways of the Lord. That He loves them, cares for them, will always be there for them, but that He also has expectations of them as well. So, thank you to everyone who helps train up these children every year for this one week in the way they should go. For the things they learn at VBS will always remain in their hearts.