< Upheaval: Brutal honesty

Friday, July 01, 2005

Brutal honesty

I hate Vacation Bible School. I have helped with it before, and (reluctantly) I did it again this year. I do not have children in the program. I am exhausted from my daily routine anyway. It takes four hours away from time with my husband every night. There are so many reasons why this was the bane of my existance this week.

Starting Sunday, I prayed for these kids. They were rowdy, undisciplined, and disrespectful. I expect much more out of our church kids. My students at a public school are younger AND better behaved than this bunch.

Starting Monday, I prayed for my own attitude. It was pretty rotten. Daniel has even said that I complained EXCESSIVELY this week.

Tuesday was a little better. Wednesday, I bonded with this completely unruly child after three days of not being able to tolerate him. That was eye-opening because I had pretty much given up and was counting the days until VBS was over.

Last night was the final night. I donned my toga and headed to the Jerusalem Marketplace. I was a couple of minutes late. I am usually very prompt, but I cared so little about this VBS that I was actually late. I am not in the pictures with the other leaders because I didn't get there on time.

About halfway through the evening, I had an opportunity to visit with a fellow helper. She was having a hard time with VBS too, and was glad that it was almost over. Now, to even engage in this conversation, my bad attitude must have been written all over my face. She asked me if I was tired and ready to go.

She ended up being very encouraging and insightful. Her son was in my group, and she told me how much he was loving it. She had been assigned VBS duty, and not even asked if she would mind, but she still had a good attitude. We ended up exchanging information so that we could get together at a later date and visit.

At the end of the night, the kids and I hugged each other and I told them that I was glad they came. And I meant it.

It amazes me that God could use me at all this week. Of our whole group, I was the spoiled, bratty, whiney, wretched, UGLY child, and He still used me. He still blessed the children through me. He blessed ME through my new friend. He taught me, and I was not even open to learning.

It shames me to even write this post. I am not one to bare my soul, but this week I learned that to be blessed, you sometimes need to be broken.


Blogger Michelle said...

God knows what we need, and when we need it. I'm glad that there was a happy ending to your week of kids. :)

11:09 AM  
Blogger Heidi said...

It's good to be brutally honest - we can't all be perfect, gung-ho, happy-go-lucky, bubbly people all.the.time can we? And God works in mysterious ways!!

11:40 AM  
Blogger Heidi said...

PS: Your blog is hilarious. I am adding you to my blogroll.

11:40 AM  
Blogger jes said...

oh, amanda. thank you for your vulnerability!

12:01 PM  
Blogger Jennboree said...

I am very proud of you, little sis. To recognize the weakness within ourselves is one thing, to share it with others along with the lesson learned is another.

God also uses us as teaching tools for others. :)

1:42 PM  
Blogger Diane said...

You're not alone in your feelings on VBS...ha! It is truly amazing that God can use us in our "unruly" state - but then again, that's Who He is and why we need Him so much! Love your blog.

3:14 PM  
Blogger Amanda Sue said...

thank you all for the encouragement. plus i had two new commenters!

thanks heidi and diane!

3:26 PM  
Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

Thanks for sharing with us. Have a great weekend.

8:25 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Hey! Wanted to make sure I "reciprocate the love." Couple of thoughts... love your honesty... many people are secure enough to be honest with themselves. Also, the fact that you would be transparent with friends and strangers alike... way cool. You just kicked my respect for you up a notch. ;) Happy 4th!

10:11 PM  
Anonymous Hula Doula said...

I have never visited here before. Thank you Ben! He saw to it that I came here!
You know this struck home because I am not looking forward to VBS this year. I haven't had a good attitude about it because I do have kids and I'm around kids CONSTANTLY! I really would like to run away from children some days. I have been praying about what I should do and even if I should get involved this year. The answer is yes. To touch one child's heart for the kingdom is the goal. My busy life can wait. My children will do fine if I'm not with them in their class.
Ok I've been kicked in the tush and convicted!

11:18 PM  
Blogger k8 said...

ha! you got that right. (the broken thing.) we're doing kingdom of the Son as our theme- like a safari. i get assigned crafts EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. I don't know why i dread it so much but i'm trying to make myself excited about it this year. especially since there are monkeys involved. my fave animal!

2:01 PM  
Blogger Princess21 said...

Just think of all of the memories they are going to have. VBS is hard! But sooo worth it!

8:48 AM  

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