When WIMO branched out to a new congregation in Peel a few years ago, an immediate need for rotating Sunday school teachers was identified and responded to by almost all of the husband and wife members who have since been taking turns every Sunday to teach the children of WIMO Peel.
It may have started just as a way of supporting the need of the newly formed congregation and not necessarily an enthusiastic response (a more diplomatic way of saying we have been voluntold) considering that we did not see ourselves well-equipped to perform the role. We stepped up to the plate thinking in the back of our minds that we could just wing it in a pinch and get through the kids lessons Sunday after Sunday. After all, we are all parents and teaching kids should come with the territory like second nature. Well, one thing I learned over the years of teaching these kids is that teaching in the Sunday school is not as easy as it may seem. No matter how good our knowledge base is in Christianity, there are still questions from these inquisitive young minds that catch us off guard or find ourselves fumbling for an age-appropriate answer. There are also many times that we run into behaviour problems, tantrums or inattentiveness, not to mention the smartness of these rambunctious little kids who will brazenly point out and chuckle at the slight slip up of mispronounced words and the distinct “Pilipino” accent of their teachers. Yes, it’s fun teaching these precious children who do warm up and open up to us with their so eager and no holds barred narrative of their experiences at home or at school and their trusting demeanour quickly melts our heart; but as cute and adorable as they can be in their best moods, once their short attention span kicks in, you would want to pull your hair out and think to yourselves, what did I get myself into? So, you see, teaching the Sunday school is no easy task. The notion that “oh it’s only Sunday school and we just need to get the kids preoccupied with activities so that the parents can focus on the Sunday service” is so wrong and certainly not the right motive to begin with. Teaching Sunday school comes with a great responsibility of molding the lives of these precious children as they are entrusted to us by God and their parents hoping that our lessons can impact and transform their lives several years from now as well as educate their young minds and fulfill the Great Commission. I believe that teaching these kids is akin to the pastor preaching to the entire congregation, albeit in a much smaller scale. However small they may be, it also takes a great deal of preparation for the lesson plan, prayer and commitment to serve God’s little children who Jesus Himself holds close and dear to His heart:
“But Jesus called them to Him and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God” (Luke 18:16).
Also, an extra effort of tugging along a supplies bag full of props, arts and crafts materials, snacks, and a little bit of tricks up our sleeves will go a long way to make the encounter with these little smart fellows productive and smooth sailing.
I have realized over the years that while teaching in the secular world is, in itself, a serious responsibility, teaching the Word of God to these children in their formative period of life is a more serious responsibility and a sacred vocation which should not be taken lightly. It can have a profound impact on the lives of these children as they grow older. When we teach, we are providing a nugget of truth, truth that will guide these kids as they are introduced to their first steps in their spiritual walk and become mature followers of Christ. We are accountable to God for what we instill into the minds and hearts of these children, and therefore, teaching the Sunday school is a huge task but at the same time a rewarding vocation as we teach these children about the amazing Saviour who loves them.
— Glenda Baylon