Your Sunday School lessons are planned, you have been praying for your sweet kiddos, and your time together with them is something you look forward to all week! Watching their eyes light up as they connect their hearts to the fact that our awesome God absolutely loves them is an epic experience! Thank you for being a Sunday School teacher! What you do is huge and it is kingdom-building!!
God works so faithfully and mightily in that single hour—but I would encourage you to pray for faith conversations to take place the rest of the week, too, rather than in the Sunday School hour alone. What if you could connect each child to a loving God, as well as equip and encourage parents to see how much God loves each one of them in the midst of busy and hectic weeks?
Equip Parents with the Tools they Need
Imagine this: parents pick up sweet Shelby, 7, from your Sunday School room. You have a big smile and encouraging things to share about how Shelby helped a friend or led prayer with the group. You are able to hand her mom and dad a short devotion for them to use at home during family Bible time in the upcoming week.
Imagine if, on Tuesday, Shelby’s mom and dad received an email from you sharing a prayer and a recap of what was covered in Sunday School. What might it look like at Shelby’s house if her parents were encouraged to deepen their spiritual experience at home with Shelby? How might it help tensions or guilt her parents feel throughout the week if they knew for sure their church was all in with them? It would empower them to not only focus on what God can do in their lives, but also surrender their worries and fears to God, knowing that He is able to love and guide them through any situation.
Pray for Specific Needs
Christian leaders throughout the church are recognizing the need for parents to have a connection, a partnership, with their church throughout all phases of parenting. More than just Baptism classes or Confirmation instruction, many leaders are seeing the value of intentionally and proactively providing relationships and community around the toddler years, support and encouragement in the elementary phase of life, and connection with youth leaders and other parents who have students in middle and high school.
Recently, our church had a large group of high school students graduate and leave for far-flung colleges. My eldest was one of these. Knowing what a huge transition this was for my own family, I asked other parents to join me in praying for the students to connect to local churches, and several empty-nest families in the congregation committed to helping pack care packages and also pray for our students to find churches at school.
Create Christ-Centered Community
For you, the Sunday School leader, I want to encourage you to pray for a larger vision of what God is doing in the lives of the students you are blessed to teach each weekend. Ask God to show you ways to create community with their parents and foster that community between parents. Parenting is often a lonely and competitive situation that can isolate people from each other. We were designed to be in relationship and community! God is at work in our homes and communities—let us leaders within the church leverage the influence we have toward helping students of all ages connect throughout the week to the God who loves them and has more in store for them that we can see!
If you are connecting with families throughout the week or have landed on a neat way to share your Sunday experience with parents, would you please comment and share your wisdom? I hope and pray that we all will take advantage of the role we have and love, encourage, and equip families to know and trust Jesus more each day! Praying for you as you serve Him in your local church!