Why do you teach?
I prefer window seats in airplanes and always request them. I love watching the clouds and bird’s eye view of the world below. Probably most important, when I’m turned toward the window, people in the row rarely talk to me. I get precious hours of silence.
I boarded a plane to Arizona. A woman in a business suit was on the aisle and a little boy traveling alone was in the middle seat. I love window seats, but I love kids more. So I offered him my seat. “No thanks,” he said. “I throw up when I look out the window.”
The woman in the suit immediately got up and changed seats. I, however, was delighted. I knew I had the boy, Jeffery, to myself for the next few hours. We made up games and talked about what he would do during his three weeks with his daddy. We talked about school and teachers and sports. I shared that I wrote lessons to help Sunday school teachers teach about Jesus. “Have you ever been to Sunday School?”
“Do you know what happens there?”
“Yes. It’s where a teacher says, ‘Who here loves God?’ and everyone answers, ‘We do.”
His answer was definitely not a little-boy answer. It sounded like his parents, both college professors. Evidently they had explained indoctrination to him, and used Sunday school as an illustration.
I countered with how much fun Sunday school could be, and how exciting it was to get to know about Jesus and have Him as a friend for life.
“Why don’t you draw me a picture of God?” I asked.
“Can’t see Him.”
“But if you could, what would He look like?”
So Jeffrey drew a very old bent man with a Santa Claus beard. It was obvious that Jeffrey’s god could use Jeffrey’s help in crossing the street, and would certainly never be seen by a little boy as a companion to his childhood struggles.
Jeffrey, and thousands like him, is the reason I’ve spent my life in Christian education. I want to be part of the group of Christians who introduce our Jeffreys and Jennifers to Jesus! I want them to see Christianity as a thinking person’s choice—not indoctrination! I want them to put our changeless biblical truth into practice today! I want to help them understand the Bible and have a future with Jesus!
Honestly answer this question for yourself: “Why do I teach?” Because someone begged me? Because I have a child in Sunday school and I feel guilty not helping? Because I get a spiritual charge out of introducing children to Jesus?
Take a few minutes right now to write your answer to the question, “Why do I teach?”.
Now take another minute to review your honest, personal answer. If it isn’t infused with delight and excitement, I encourage you to talk with your children’s ministry leader about taking a break from teaching. The value of introducing children to Jesus cannot be over-stated.
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