Kate Motaung has issued the one word SUNSHINE as our word prompt for this week’s 5 minute writing challenge. I could write for days on the memories provoked by this one word; however, I’m setting my timer for 5.


Sunshine. This one word brings a torrential downpour of memories of growing up in the sunshine state also known as Florida.

I can simply close my eyes and see suntanned children with chlorine bleached hair barefoot on bicycles. Climbing “our tree” in the center of our cul de sac. Fireflies. Heat lightning in the night sky. And swimming in our backyard pool.

Family visited. An uncle moved to join us after graduation. Grandparents moved to join us to live in the glorious sunshine after retirement. Even a great grandma! Everyone wanted to live with us in the sunshine.

Sunshine. Perrine, Florida. 1970(ish).

And yet this past week, in my new home town in the sunshiny desert of California, I had the privilege of volunteering at what used to be known as Vacation Bible School. Summer Spectacular it’s now called, but it’s still about Jesus and the Bible. This one week after school let out for summer was still all about introducing children to a relationship with Jesus.

As I stood daily in the glorious sunshine I watched young and old adults teach, care for and love on children, many of whom know nothing of church or Jesus. And I remembered my own VBS experience in the ancient year of 1971.

Bonnie, my mom’s dear friend, invited me to go with her to VBS. Monday through Friday she picked me up in her VWBug. I don’t remember many details, but I remember warmth, love, caring and fun. I remember thinking the church was a good place. And Jesus must be the best if this was His house. I remember wanting to belong to Jesus and live with Him and His family one day. It was an eternity changing week in my life.

Summer Spectacular 2023

And so I felt a sense of honor this past week to get to be a Bonnie amongst hundreds of volunteers standing in the sunshine with children getting to know Jesus.

One word is powerful to help us remember. I pray for you as you close your eyes and let this one word lead you to memories. And I pray those memories lead you to Jesus, who is the word made flesh.

Eyes on Jesus and Shine,


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