I suppose that the bus ministry has gone out of style in many places. It’s a hard ministry to operate, with special licenses, insurance, vehicles, costs, etc. It’s hard to find drivers, captains, helpers, and teachers willing to put up with kids who may not always behave so well. There are certainly always reasons NOT to have a bus ministry.
And I’m not writing to criticize at all, but simply to share our own testimony in regards to the Sunday School bus ministry. Perhaps it will encourage someone already in this ministry or someone who is thinking about it.
I love the bus ministry, not just for scriptural reasons, but for personal ones. For almost 25 years, someone from the Rasbeary family has been in a bus or van on almost any given Sunday, and sometimes it was all of us.
My wife was a teenager when a bus worker invited her to church. She rode an old white bus with holes in the floor to church, and it’s there she got saved. The bus workers came back and brought her to church in their car for the evening services. Her life was absolutely and totally changed for good. Her whole life trajectory was changed because a bus worker came by.
Since then, we’ve served as captains, helpers and drivers on and off in three different churches including LBC. As pastor, I’ve also driven the bus and served as a bus captain when needed; and, as pastor’s wife, my wife started a bus route and built it up before passing it on to our daughter. Maybe not the best way to do things but we did it anyway.
Which brings me to this post, because today I had the privilege of being a substitute driver again, and watched my daughter lead singing and love on the bus kids during the ride home. She had 25 kids despite Spring Break and several of them got saved today. And it got me to thinking about how the bus ministry has benefited our kids:
- It has provided an area of real, personal, active service to the Lord. The bus ministry is one of the rare ministries that kids can be actively and constructively a part of on a weekly basis. Helping, running doors, serving as secretary, etc. All of our kids have done it, gladly and willingly. For them, serving the Lord is more than going and sitting in church. It is doing something for God and others.
- It has helped them have real compassion on others who are often less fortunate.
- It has allowed them to enjoy the excitement of seeing a ministry grow and to see people saved.
- It has taught them to tough out the times when attendance has lagged, and to be faithful.
- It has illustrated for them what they often hear preached about – the hidden price tag of sin, seen in people’s lives.
- It has taught them that serving God is something we do when it’s hot, cold, or rainy.
- It has helped them to actively care about all people, regardless of their skin color, ethnicity, or financial standing.
This is just our testimony. We love the bus ministry and trust that God will continue to provide the means to operate it until Jesus comes. If I had a young family all over again, I’d ask for a bus and work it ourselves. I’ve seen it do too much good in our home and church.
Just some thoughts! Thanks for reading. God bless.