Foto Friday!

Katie here- filling in for Keith for a few weeks while he works hard on lots of fun things for you guys!

We’ve gotten to see so many AMAZING VBS decorations over on our Facebook page— submitted by you guys! Here are a few reader-submitted Worship Rally Hangar Photos!

Shiloh Baptist Church!

Calvary Baptist Church in Alexandria, LA. They had parts of a REAL plane!

First Baptist Bethany, Bethany, OK

First Baptist Church, Texas City

Bat Cave Baptist Church!

WOW!  I’m impressed by all this hard work!  If you have photos from your VBS this summer, please share them with us on Facebook or email them to me at!

Say Y-E-S to Preschool V-B-S!

VBS season is in full swing & while all of you have been gearing up for VBS in your churches, all of us on the VBS team have been doing the same thing! It is so wonderful to get to experience VBS “from the trenches”… not as a job but as Kingdom work! I taught kindergartners this year… 31 of them, in fact! Out of those 31, only 7 were from my church. VBS really is an incredible outreach tool!

This year, my church tried something a little bit different. We added a second worship rally to our schedule that was specifically for preschoolers & kindergartners. The morning kicked off for 1st-6th graders with the traditional Worship Rally, but preschoolers started the morning in their respective rooms. Then at 9:40 (when all of the big kids had cleared out), we got to fly in for a worship rally designed just for us! We had a fabulous leader who basically modified the preschool music rotation teaching plans so that we could sing songs, play instruments, move around, and talk about the daily Bible stories in ways that just wouldn’t fly if preteens were in the room. But it was perfect for preschoolers! We even had time for offerings and practicing the theme song each day.

The kids’ favorite song from the week had to be one called “Always”… and it played a significant part in one of my all-time favorite VBS memories. The song lyrics are almost identical to preschool’s Day 2 verse: “Be strong. Do not be afraid. God is with you” (Joshua 1:9). On Wednesday morning one of my kindergartners came in the door and walked straight to me. “Miss Melita,” she said, “last night at bedtime I got kind of scared. But then I remembered that song. I sang it to myself probably 4-20 times. And you know what? It worked! God was with me, and I wasn’t afraid anymore.”

WOW! A 6-year-old child connected the truth of the Bible to a real life situation because she had “hidden it in her heart” through song. Wow! That’s what it’s all about!

Here’s a little video of “Always” from our preschool worship rally. And if you’re really good, you might be able to catch a glimpse of Gordon, too! Enjoy!

Always — preschool worship rally

Pilot Monologue

So many people have asked for a copy of the pilot monologue that was presented during Worship Rally at the VBS Preview events that we decided to post it here on our blog. The monologue gives a brief overview of the Bible content for each day of Amazing Wonders Aviation. Feel free to use it during your associational or church VBS training or in promotion of VBS in your own church!

Interesting fact: The “flight log entries” were taken from actual entries in a real pilot’s flight log from the 1960s.

[[Costume: aviator goggles, cap, scarf, and bomber jacket. Pilot enters, carrying flight log.]]

Ever since I was a little girl I knew I wanted to be a pilot. My granddaddy was a pilot, so I guess it’s just in my blood. I can remember listening to him tell stories of the incredible places he’d been and thinking, “one day I’m gonna see those things for myself.” I have all of his old flight logs and I love flipping through them and reading the little notes he wrote next to each trip. Sometimes the notes are just the name of a person he ferried from one place to another. Sometimes they detail damage to the plane or repairs that were needed. But sometimes the notes seem to capture the moment of what he was experiencing from the cockpit.

Take this one… September 9th, 1932… “Rainbow & rain over Grand Canyon. Awesome sight. Awesome Creator.” Then later “Extreme turbulence & blowing dust to see Cedar Breaks & Bryce Canyons. Safely through by His hand.” Those few simple words are a reminder to me of an amazing God who has awesome power over nature. [[Day 1]] When the Israelites were preparing to enter the promised land, one thing stood between where they were and where they wanted to be… a wildly rushing river at flood stage. But the God of all creation stopped the water from flowing and the people crossed safely on dry ground. Amazing!

Let’s look at another one. April 22, 1934… “Heavy fog & limited visibility. Sudden hail storm & extensive damage to No. 2 engine forces emergency landing. God protected.” You can check and recheck every piece of equipment and weather conditions and sometimes circumstances are just out of your control. [[Day 2]] But I know there is a God who has power over circumstances! Daniel found himself in a situation out of his control. He landed himself in a lion’s den by praying to God instead of the king. But God closed the mouths of the lions and protected Daniel. Amazing!

But you know, the most amazing thing to me is that God has power over sin and over death. [[Day 3]] Remember that rainbow my grandfather saw over the Grand Canyon? Well it is a reminder of a promise God once made. But you know, God made an even more important promise to mankind. He promised to send a Savior. It was His own Son, Jesus. Can’t you just imagine the looks on Simeon and Anna’s faces when they saw Baby Jesus in the temple that day? They recognized Jesus as the fulfillment of God’s promise! Now that’s amazing!

But the story didn’t end there. [[Day 4]] Jesus grew from a baby, to a boy, to a man. He lived a life without sin and yet was willing to pay the penalty for your sin and mine by dying on a cross. Then God, who has power over death, raised Jesus from the dead! Jesus died and rose again to be the Savior of the world. Nothing is more amazing than that!

[[Thumbs through log]] I’m glad my grandfather was a pilot. He instilled in me a love of adventure and a love of flying. But I’m especially glad that he was a man of great faith. [[Day 5]] He truly believed that God had power over his life and his circumstances. He met a lot of interesting people as a pilot, and he never shied away from telling them about our amazing God. In Acts 5, the apostles were being persecuted for performing miraculous healings and other signs and wonders. The high priest and the Sadducees arrested them and threw them in jail. But during the night an angel broke them out of prison and told them to go into the temple courts and tell people about their new life in Christ. Even when they were told to be quiet, they continued to boldly tell others about Jesus. God gave them power to be witnesses in difficult circumstances.

No matter what turbulence you encounter in life, remember the words of Psalm 147:5: “The Lord is great, vast in power; His understanding is infinite.”

Airplane Props for the VBS Musical

If you were fortunate enough to attend the Nashville VBS Previews and see the children’s choir from The People’s Church in Franklin, TN, you would’ve seen these cute airplanes they added to the theme song! Several people have asked where the choir purchased these. The choir director ordered them a few years ago from Oriental Trading. They currently are out of stock or no longer carry them, but we’re thinking they just might make them available again if there are enough requests!

Official title and product number: “Amazing Airplane”  IN-61/9054.

Every year we get questions about “that program the kids presented” at the VBS Previews! You’ll find the musical printed in The Music Book (005404192) which sells for $5.99. This book contains the six VBS 2012 songs along with the written drama and production notes. Be sure to check it out!

Decorating Worship Rally. . .Time Lapse!

Hi everyone! I know, I’m usually a Friday blogger but I found this video this weekend on our LifeWay VBS 2013 website that I wanted to share.

This is a time lapse video of Melita, Gordon and Pam putting the Worship Rally set up.

The jokester in me wanted to say that this was in real time and that Melita, Gordon and Pam had just drank a pot of coffee EACH but I decided to be nice. :P


The Worship Rally Hangar

Welcome to the Worship Rally Hangar!

Worship Rally Hangar

Worship Rally is more than just the gathering place to start your VBS day, it’s the launching point for kids as they are introduced to the Bible content each day. These decorating tips can help you set the stage for your own Worship Rally Hangar.

Tip #1: Ask for help. It takes a lot of work to pull off a set up like this one. So gather some friends to help you.

Tip #2: Find the dimensions, supply list, and step-by-step instructions to replicate the Worship Rally Hangar in the Decorating Made Easy book.

Tip #3: Insulation board is your friend. It’s inexpensive and easy to work with. You can remove the plastic sheathing and paint it. You can use T-pins and duct tape to hold pieces together, and to affix accessories. In fact, that’s how we attached the real door pulls to our hangar.

Tip #4: Collect cardboard boxes. You can cut up some insulation foam and attach it to the outside of a cardboard box to make a real-looking wooden crate. Use paint to add some color and texture to the foam so it looks like wood. If you feel like having even more fun, use a heat tool to make grooves in the foam and then paint the grooves with a darker color paint.

Tip #5: Clean out the garage. Bring in tool boxes, barrels, crates, anything that looks like it might belong in an airplane hangar. Add an AWA logo—you’ll find it on the Decorating Made Easy Clip Art CDand you’re done!

Our airplane is made out of two-inch Styrofoam® and insulation board. You can find details for making your own in the Decorating Made Easy book, and hear more from Melita about how we made ours in our “Amazing Decorating Tips” video. Take a peek!

Lights! Camera! Action!

We recently wrapped up the shooting of the VBS 2012 drama for the Worship Rally DVD. It was such a great experience. We had a wonderful group of kids to work with. They were so talented, and such great people to be with during a 10-hour work day!


We got to shoot much of the video inside an old World War II bunker. I couldn’t believe how massive that place was. You could journey 300-400 feet into this underground labyrinth of tunnels with mysterious rooms and passageways. Lots of heavy metal (not heavy-metal) doors that screech when opened.


I wondered what all had taken place inside that space over the years.

As interesting as the bunker was when we first walked in, it was a blank slate. Steve Fralick, a multi-tasking member of our video team and set designer extraordinaire, had shopped for vintage aviation and other items during the two or three months prior to the shoot. (He can find treasure where others see only junk.)


And once we were on location, we traveled to an egg farm and gathered a variety of worn-out and beat-up items—an old desk that had uneven legs to stand on, a rolling metal storage shelf that was rusted beyond use, broken pallets, old gas cans, and anything else that looked old.

I’m so excited about this video! I think the story is intriguing and tons of fun, and kids will like the mystery of the bunker. I can’t wait for you to see it!

More about the shoot in my next post!