I enjoy Sunday church services. The singing of hymns & praise music. Announcements, and putting my faith into action with an offering are important. I enjoy a sermon that challenges me, teaches a biblical truth, or shares a prophetic insight. But to be completely honest, I enjoy the Sunday School hour much more.

Sunday School is often more interactive. We can go into a subject deeper. We can identify the people in the bible closer and try to understand what they experienced and how God used them or interacted with them. We can discuss their background and culture. We discover details to add to the significance and understanding of their interaction with God. And through these more intimate Sunday school lessons, we get a better understanding of who God is. Of his Love, Holiness, Power, Mercy, and of his plans and desires for us. What a joy to better know God and be known by God, especially through his son, Jesus.

There are usually good discussions and I love to hear an insight from someone who does not normally speak up. I love to connect a dot between scriptures or to connect a prophecy fulfilled that I missed before. I love to see that fresh new insight come to others for the first time also. Sunday school is a great way to mature our faith and deepen relationships in the Body of Christ.

I normally teach Sunday School five or six months out of the year to different age Sunday School Classes. Teaching always blesses me more than those I teach. It forces me to take time, slow down and really study the scriptures in the lesson of the week. I love the International Sunday School lessons. They force me to look at parts of the bible that I would never on my own choose to teach about. Teaching has deepened my faith and continues to.

Not everyone in the church has the gift of teaching, but many do. Being intentional about getting new people to teach is important. It usually starts with getting them to fill in for someone one week and next get them to commit to teaching one class on a regular basis. It is good to have many teachers with different styles, experiences, and perspectives.
Teaching Sunday School is also a way to prepare future leaders, deacons, and ministers in the church. Not every Sunday School teacher is going to be your next minister, but for those whom God is calling, the call is only strengthened when someone is personally diving into the Bible while preparing for a lesson.

It is important that we meet as the family of God on a weekly basis. I don’t know what Sunday School looks like at your church body, but don’t take it for granted. A strong Sunday School hour that is enriching for every age is an important part of our weekly worship.

Jim Nolt – Executive Board Member