If your church doesn’t get a bouncy, jump jump castle or slide thing for your Vacation Bible School this summer, that’s the equivalent of charging money for the tortilla chips at Chipotle.
Seriously, the first time I ordered chips and they asked for money I thought it was some sort of ground corn based joke. I kind of laughed a little, reached for the chips and then noticed the awkwardness that was building like a tower of ill placed jenga blocks. I briefly thought about knocking over the cash register and making a dash for it. But I didn’t, I didn’t.
But just because they have lime flavor on them doesn’t mean they should charge you money for a staple of free deliciousness. It’s just wrong, as wrong as a VBS not offering the delightfulness that is a bouncy jump jump thing.
I didn’t grow up with bouncy things. Occasionally my dad would toss me into the air as a child and I’d close my eyes and imagine I was enrobed in a brightly colored room in which I could bounce and bounce and bounce. I’d imagine the sense of invincibility, just jumping against the walls with sweaty abandon. But that was just in my imagination. I didn’t live in a world with bouncy things.
Kids today though, they have access to this jump perfection. And not just one variety. There’s the castle. The slide. The jungle theme. The obstacle course. There’s really no limit to the size and shape of our ability to inflate rubber into a jumpable delight.
My kids are constantly wanting us to stop and visit birthday parties when we see a family who has rented one. They don’t care that we’d be strangers. They want to do a mini, less nude, version of the movie “Wedding Crashers,” and just bounce for a few minutes, grab a Capri Sun and then jet. There, I’ve said it, the Acuffs love bouncy things so much that we’re considering being “Birthday crashers.” And you’re thinking about not getting one for VBS this year?
I think they’re maybe even Biblical. Isn’t there a chunk of verses where Jesus makes a whip and roughs up a VBS that doesn’t have a bouncy thing? He kicks over all the glitter and craft tables when he realizes there’s no inflated slide in the entire VBS. I might be mistaken, but I’m almost positive that’s how it happened.
Good luck. Sure, it’s probably a problem that my kids think VBS stands for “Vacation Bouncy School,” fair enough. But this year will without a doubt be better than that time we sent our daughter to a VBS and she spent the day watching the Disney movie, “The Little Mermaid.” I know God made the sea, but yikes, that was a stretch.
What’s your best VBS memory?