Sunday, July 29, 2012

Good Summer Things

One of the best things about this summer is that the little girls have been able to enjoy several activities sponsored either by our church or a neighboring church that we attended for a brief time after moving to our new home. They both went to vacation Bible school (VBS) earlier this summer, and it made my heart happy to hear them singing the songs they learned and repeating the verses they'd discussed. VBS was a staple of my childhood summers. I loved the crafts, meeting new kids, learning more about the Bible, and I'm so thankful to live in the U.S. again, where my children can take part in the tradition.

This past week, Eliza got to participate in our church's Sports Camp. It's a one-week program (just 3 hours each day), where the kids get to be outside and active (soccer, cheer, football, etc.) and work with a camp counselor to connect their activities to specific Bible themes or passages. This year, the theme was Going for the Gold, and it emphasized the importance of the ultimate reward of our relationship with God: heaven. I don't talk about heaven much with my kids. They understand it simply as a place where people they love go after death. I let them imagine what they will and explain that I don't really know with certainty what heaven is like. Regardless of what my kids choose to believe when they are adults, linking the values we believe in to a larger foundation of faith is important to us as parents. We're talking about simple concepts here, folks: Don't steal, lie, cheat, kill. Respect and obey your parents. Help others. Be thankful to God and turn to Him in prayer. Having an environment that reinforces those lessons is something the girls (at least Eliza, who's almost 6) seem to appreciate and enjoy. Seeing their joy is what makes my heart happy, and that's something I really need more of these days.

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