Jesus’s Love Through Kids

Can I be completely honest for a minute here?

Like, totally honest.

 

The idea of spending five days, three hours each day (and really early in the day, might I add) with a bunch of wild, energetic, crazy little kids sounds utterly exhausting. I mean, it wasn’t that long ago when I was that young, so I do still remember being absolutely crazy with energy myself, but since I’ve aged just a couple of years since my VBS-attending years, I’ve noticed my tendencies to act like a bear in the morning. This means that if anyone crosses my path before noon, there is a likely chance that I will either respond in grunts and very basic language, or I will be extremely grumpy. This is not at all like I was when I was younger when I could wake up at the crack of dawn with no problems whatsoever.

This is a recipe for disaster when they tell you you’re supposed to be cheerful with kids. Cheerful???? How am I supposed to be cheerful??? 

Did I also mention that I did Spotlight VBS this year? Spotlight VBS is where we take the bible story/lesson from the day and combine it with pictures to create a fun way to remind kids of what they learned in the day. The kids love seeing themselves on the screen so it’s something they really enjoy, but it requires a lot of energy.

From the moment I pulled out my camera and asked for some of the first pictures of the day, however, my spirit was lightened immediately. These kids not only have energy in general, but they have the ability to rub off that energy too. Day after day, I watched as these kids began to recognize me and get excited as they realized that if the photographer was around, that meant that they could get in on the slideshow. Seeing them excited over something I worked to do make me excited. That made me realize something pretty key- VBS is not just about adults and leaders teaching the kids about VBS- it’s also about the kids teaching us about Jesus.

I found Jesus in the hearts of every kid’s smile at VBS this week. I found that love of Christ every time they would get excited when I would ask for their pictures. I found God in these children every time I would hear their quiet murmurs as they saw themselves on the screens while I read the bible verse. These kids have that energy for God that is easy to spread, and boy did it spread to me. I got more and more excited to see the kids each day, and was saddened when it was over.

I guess the gist of it is this:

Adults are sooooo not the only ones who can worship God. Kids can love God and show his love too, and that is the number one most beautiful thing about VBS, even though we all might be a little in need of caffeine.

 

 

Taking Pictures… It’s What I Do

Being a photographer at the Rochester Servant Event could be viewed as both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, the photographer misses the opportunity of being in a group and experiencing the bond of teamwork. On the other hand, well… on the other hand, there are a lot of great things about being a photographer.

I was one of three photographers at RSE this year: myself, Heather, and Joann. One of the coolest things about being given that particular task is that I was basically on my own. My mom acted as my chauffeur (shoutout to my mom!) since I don’t have my license yet, but even with an adult getting me to each worksite, I had the freedom and ability to see all of the inner workings of such a big event. From the organizers to the group leaders to the youth, I had the third person perspective where I could be a part of any of the aforementioned groups of people and would fit in, despite being singularly a youth. So, being a photographer granted me this kind of special status of youth and adult, and there was no problem in my being both. (Thank the Lord- more often than not, we’re stuck in an either-or situation where teenagers are EITHER kids OR adults. Few people understand that we’re both.)

Being a photographer at RSE also gave me the unique opportunity to get to know more people. Because I was the photographer and had to wander here and there to get pictures, I had the ability to strike up conversations with anyone. (Which, by the way, is awesome!)

Also, I don’t think I’ve mentioned this so I’m going to go right ahead and say it: I love photography. With all of my time in the school year dedicated to work and honors/AP classes (as well as a couple clubs), I had little time to do the things I love, and as I revved up my camera equipment and battery, I joked about my camera being a little dusty. RSE gave my sisters and I the opportunity to be placed where our hearts would be, and I’m glad it’s put me both in photography and my love of writing- which is why I’m right here. Right now. On this computer screen or phone screen or wherever you’re reading this.  

I could go on for hours about how great RSE is, but there’s one last thing that I feel is worth mentioning from my perspective and that is the Rochester Servant Event’s ability to draw people in. My sister invited a friend from school. People invited their friends to the concert. This event is the joining of young and old, Christian and non-Christian, and people of all types, and it is so, so beautiful. In this way, we worship Jesus Christ in a way that shows our love instead of just talking about it.

And let me tell you, that makes for a beautiful picture.
-Rebecca “Becca” Mennecke