We’re grateful for opportunities to share Christ and love a whole bunch of children. The County Fair has been a channel to do just that. You should see the joy on kids’ faces after receiving their balloon creation or face paint, the eagerness with which they take the tract—opening it to browse it and telling us they would read it—the patient waiting in line, pouring over the face paint option board, and their words of gratefulness.
Since we’ve been back to the fair four years in a row, parents and children eagerly anticipate finding us. They look for where we normally are. Our desire is that those we come in contact with feel loved and ultimately the gospel is shared through tracts.
Christopher and one of his children came out several nights to witness while walking around the fair. He said the teens were the most open to the gospel.
We’re so grateful for the support of our family in this endeavor.
“But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” Luke 18:16
I’m excited to share with you more on the fair! Being our third year, kids came looking for us. There was a line formed every day we arrived. We loved our “groupies” who came every single night and we knew each by name. Many others had come in previous years, which was special to reconnect.
We saw huge enthusiasm from the children. They never seemed to mind the wait time for their balloon or face paint. Believe it or not, some came to the fair just to get their faces painted.
One grandma told me that the tracts we gave out last year were read and re-read so much they fell apart! This year, I found several new ones. See the end of my post for links.
It has proven to be a beautiful way to share the love of Jesus. Many parents asked why we were doing it for free? When we explain that we love kids, and we want them to know how much Jesus loves them and that this avenue is a perfect way for us to do that–it makes total sense to the parents!
A mom shared that she could tell how much effort Mary put into the face painting, treating each one as special and not doing a rush job. I loved that aspect too.
Anna’s balloon creations are complex. It’s not just a few pumps of air and twist. No. Each one requires a specific amount of air and then what she makes involves multiple balloons with all kinds of steps she memorized. Children loved her balloon art!
Different family members came out to the fair each night to help in various ways. They did line management, handed out tracts and visited with people.
These three girls were adorable. Here they discussed if they were cousins or just friends!
Christopher helped out with balloons two nights.
Can you tell these girls are best friends?!
A sweet stop in from Nathan and Melanie’s crew!
This girl came every night, and on the final day, she asked if she could paint a butterfly on Anna. With complete confidence, she did the entire thing, no hesitation.
Christopher did a Name 10, Get 20 with young people. That’s Name the 10 Commandments, and if you do, get $20!
This guy named all 10!
The night Jesse came he spent a lot of time handing out tracts and sharing.
I enjoyed talking to a blog reader one night!
I told you Anna’s creations are incredible!
A really great horse that this guy put around him so he could ride.
The night Christopher brought his whole family, Anna Marie and girls gave out some cards to tell about the booth, and Christopher and Joshua witnessed.
Mary used sparkle glitter to add finishing touches to some of the paints.
You know, part of line control is deciding when to call it a day so we could be timely as the building closed at 10pm. The easiest way to do this happened after counting up the # in line and approximating how much time each would take. Then, we gave the person deemed to be last a balloon, which said End of Line. This worked out to be a light-hearted way to end things because even at 9:30, we’d still have people stopping in wanting a face paint or balloon!
“Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.” Philippians 1:27
We’ve been so blessed to share again at the Leavenworth County Fair for our third year in a row with face painting and balloons. Today is the last day!
God has abundantly blessed, and it’s an amazing joy to see frequent flyers coming to the booth along with many new faces. Anna and Mary work almost five hours each night (without breaks!), bringing joy to sweet children.
We’ll share more next week, but I wanted to give you a preview.
Talk about ADORABLE!
Oh, the lines. 🙂
Smiles all around. Super cute ladybugs!
Anna with a little friend and her newest creation, a dinosaur!
The sweet moment when Mary shows them their face!
The end of line balloon. I’ll tell you more about how we do that later.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1
We finished out our final three days at the fair and came home feeling very blessed at the opportunities. We’re also grateful to the family who pitched in to help at the booth and give out cards while the girls worked.
I figured out Anna and Mary (each) spent approximately 27 hours twisting balloons and face painting over the course of 5 days. Children and parents alike were grateful that these items were offered at no cost. How many things in life are free?!
Here are some things I noticed about:
Balloons: These were especially popular with the boys, but tons of girls wanted them too. They literally smiled from ear to ear as they left with some amazing balloon art. Anna frequently had two lines watching her: those in her balloon line, and then the face painting line often did too. In addition, children would gather around her, as she sat on the floor with them and made them animals.
Face Painting: Some children had never had their face painted, and the joy they showed was priceless. Parents especially loved watching their kiddos get a face paint, and sometimes I would smile to myself as a group of adults would be gathered around Mary, ooohing and exclaiming over what she was doing. So many wanted their faces done, from the parent holding her one-year-old, to teenagers, to the parent herself!
We made new friends and most importantly, shared Jesus! We also had many opportunities to learn more about people and just love them and lend a listening ear.
“Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.” (Philippians 1:27)
Dropping in to give y’all a report of the first two evenings at the Leavenworth County Fair!
Opening night, Dad and I were the support team, so we walked around and handed out cards and told people where the face painting + balloons were. I loved seeing children’s excitement as they want to hurry to get to the booth! Opening night was also parade night, which afforded us great opportunities to hand out cards to those waiting.
Occasionally, we’d go check on the girls, and when the line was long, we knew we’d better take a break on the cards. I enjoyed talking to moms while they waited, and I especially loved meeting a blog reader Tuesday night. Super sweet lady! Christopher also came for part of the evening with Joshua, and Christopher helped Anna out with balloon twisting.
The next night, it rained, so there were less people over all at the fair. John handed out cards, while I stayed in, but you know the amazing part? The girls’ line stayed steady all night! Perhaps because the rain kept more people inside?
Anna and Mary work steadily and faithfully. They love interacting with the children, and they also love to delight them. What kid doesn’t like to get a cool face paint or an awesome balloon?
Please continue in prayer for tonight and then tomorrow as we wrap up the fair. Pray for opportunities to share Jesus and continue to shine His light. We’ve already been blessed to have some great talks about the Lord with many folks!
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” (Romans 1:16)