LOWRY CITY—First Baptist Church here June 27-July 2 held a unique patriotic Vacation Bible School (VBS) entitled “My Country ‘tis of Thee!”
“Due to the rapid erosion of knowledge regarding the Bible’s direct influence on our nation’s founding, we decided that we could begin to reverse that trend by using facts from U.S. history to teach our children their true heritage as Americans,” said Jeff Ferguson, pastor of First Lowry City. “For example, Americans recognize the Liberty Bell as a iconic symbol of our nation, yet very few know that it is called the ‘Liberty’ Bell because Leviticus 25:10, ‘Proclaim LIBERTY throughout the land to the inhabitants thereof;’ is cast in raised letters around the bell.”
The patriotic VBS highlighted the direct influence the Bible had on the Pilgrims, The Great Awakening led by George Whitfield and Jonathan Edwards, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, many of the Founding Fathers, and even the architecture of buildings in Washington D.C.
“Many of the buildings in Washington D.C. have references to the Bible or Scriptures carved on them,” Ferguson said. “For example, the U.S. Supreme Court Building has on its front fascia a detailed relief of Moses holding the Ten Commandments.”
Besides mailings and door-to-door flyers, a new outreach had the children from the church inviting area children to attend “My Country ‘tis of Thee!” by passing out red, white and blue glow bracelets at the annual Lowry City fireworks display the night before VBS started.
During craft time the children worked on a “Star Spangled” baseball, bat, and glove rack made of wood for “My Country ‘tis of Thee!” The rack includes a star painted like an American flag and “My Country ‘tis of Thee!” painted on the stripes along with a Scripture reference.
“We wanted them to make and take home a durable craft project that would last for years to come, and since baseball is America’s pastime, the bat, ball and glove rack was a natural fit,” Ferguson said.
On July 2, before a packed house, the children wearing colonial tricorn hats presented a powerful musical drama featuring patriotic songs such as “My Country ‘tis of Thee,” “God Bless America,” “America The Beautiful,” and “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
“These songs are rich with references to the Lord and His provision for our nation,” Ferguson said. “Unfortunately we rarely sing the second and third stanzas of these great hymns. We taught the boys and girls the songs along with the stories of their composers to reinforce the profound impact that God’s Word had on our nation’s founding.”
First Baptist Church of Lowry City is located just off of Highway 13 along D Highway, 17 miles south of Clinton.