Because I am a seminary professor, I live most of my life in the ivory tower of academia. In spite of that, I love Vacation Bible School! Despite the fact that I teach New Testament Greek as my vocation, I have no greater privilege than helping children to understand the gospel. In my life I have been a worker or attendee at well over two hundred Vacation Bible Schools.
Learning to love the Gospel
Because I spent a good part of my life as a professional juggler/ventriloquist and have used these skills to pay my way through graduate schools, I have been asked by many churches to use these skills to help share the gospel. I have many great memories of children from as far away as Chicago learning to love the Gospel through the use of visual aids.
One of the reasons that I love being involved with a VBS is that it keeps me grounded and reminds me what ministry outside the classroom looks like. I find that is far too easy to become chained to my desk reading and studying, and not involved in “hands on ministry” of actually dealing with people.
In addition to having fond memories of VBS as a child, for the past 30 years I have been involved in at least one VBS per summer and often have appeared at five or six. I find that seeing the enthusiasm of children reminds me of why I am in the ministry.
Influencing world changers
Despite all of my years in graduate school, the many things that I have studied, lectured, and written about I still feel a thrill when I stand before little children and teach them about Jesus. Who knows what world changing people might be in that crowd? There could be another Charles Spurgeon, Billy Graham, or Mother Theresa.
Why do I continue to love Children’s work and VBS despite the fact that I am a seminary professor? Because VBS matters. Because children matter. Because the Kingdom matters and I am excited to be a small part of it.
Dr. Samuel Lamerson, is a professor of New Testament and interim president at Know Theological Seminary. When he’s not teaching, Dr. Lamerson enjoys sleight of hand and juggling. He is passionate about children’s ministry and is the only faculty member that has appeared on Nickelodeon. Every Christmas he puts on a magic and puppet show at Knox for the children. He is married and has two grown children. www.knoxseminary.edu