PHILADELPHIA (BRN) – We serve a God who works in unexpected ways. We can devise our plans and include the finest of details, but He has the final say. Proverbs 16:9 (NLT) reminds us, “We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps.”
Pastor Andy Sommers and Harvest Community Church – Allegheny North experienced God determining the church’s steps during their recent KidzFest VBS, underwritten in part by a BRN Evangelism grant.
Harvest promoted KidzFest extensively by way of online Facebook ads, local newspaper ads, and 700 flyers distributed door-to-door in two strategic areas that the other ads did not reach.
Despite having an effective communication strategy, most of the kids began to arrive about 30-45 minutes late on the first night.
Harvest responded by changing their set-up time. “The next night we got everything set up much earlier and went to knock on doors to bring the kids to the park,” said Sommers. “That night we registered about 15 kids for the VBS portion.”
God not only caused Harvest to change their schedule. He also sent some unexpected guests.
“And something that we did not anticipate was how many teenagers began showing up,” explained Sommers. “So we adjusted our strategy and assigned a couple of guys from our ‘safety team’ to play basketball with them. We had about 7-8 teens showing up to play basketball every night after that.”
Harvest’s team of 15-20 volunteers were busy each evening. Those who did not have a specific task chatted with parents or played with teens who were too old for the program.
During the week, students were taught LifeWay curriculum, “Seek Truth, Find Jesus.”
Every night opened and closed with a Gospel presentation for VBS students, parents and God’s surprise teen guests who were in the audience.
About 24 students registered during the week. This number does not include the teens who showed up just to hang out, play basketball and eat.
“It was a good learning experience for us and [it] was the first major outreach that we have done since we relocated to Natrona Heights from Freeport,” said Sommers. “Although we were hoping for at least 40 kids we were very grateful for those who we were able to reach with the Gospel in spite of the threat of thunderstorms almost every night, but only got rained out once.”
While planning for KidzFest, little did Harvest know that God was at work in the lives of some teens and would send these young people to their doorstep! By letting go of their expectations, the church witnessed God do some amazing and unexpected things!