Last month, I entitled this newsletter article, ‘Vacation Bible School’. I did that because I was blown away by the response of the children to the gospel message. I was also overwhelmed by the servanthood shown during that week by the teenagers and adult leaders who gave so unselfishly during the week. Now in writing this newsletter for August, as a church we have experienced 2 more camps aimed at children. ‘Musicville’ – which was a ‘first ever’ acting camp. If you were anywhere close to being part of that week then you know it brought the house down with a Saturday night musical production involving 3rd through 6th graders who had 5 days to meet each other, find out what they were doing, then refine and put it on for a full house of parents, grandparents, family and friends. The week of ‘Musicville’ again involved teenage and adult leadership that simply was second to none and the directing debut of Heather Diehl a 7th grader who is pursuing a dream and involving all of us along the way. Then the last camp, Math Camp, the vision given to Jeff Otto to raise the level of desire and love in the heart of young people for the subject of Math. This camp filled up immediately. I spoke the first day to a man from Vandalia United Methodist Church, who was serving on the adult team for that week in order to learn all he could so that he can start a Math Camp over there possibly next year.
I look around the halls, the servants in the kitchen preparing lunch for the nearly 10,000 people who will receive lunch this summer through the Summer Lunch Program – I see the teenagers and the adults moving through the hallways with what is affectionately gaining the name, “the camp week walk” and I see God all over this place. The personal touch that each camp gave each child, each day reminds me of Psalm 147:4-5
“He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.”
We have a team preparing to leave for Tanzania, where they will serve at Angel House, led by a man who has been a key leader in pioneering missions here at Tipp City UMC – Larry Reisser. But this team will carve their way through the interior of eastern Africa from Nairobi, Kenya to Tarime, Tanzania and experience and serve the children on the other side of the world.
We have a full slate of adults preparing for the Give Kids The World mission trip in October to serve children diagnosed with life threatening illnesses in Kissimmee, Fla. These children and their families could actually be from anywhere in the world, but we from Tipp City United Methodist Church will be there.
These efforts do not just happen! They are made possible because people who are in community together have decided that every child matters, every child deserves to be “called by name”. Every child is a creation of a loving God who takes the time to call rock formations by name, how much more does His character long to see good things for His greatest creation – US. Then we the church, band together and take on His nature and character and become His hands and feet – in Tipp City, in Tanzania, in Florida or where ever He may send us.
Church – You Are Doing It! You are the people of God, being the people of God and Great is our Lord and might in power.
I hope you are part of this summer at Tipp City UMC,