– By Donna Peavey

Feelings of excitement and anticipation flooded over me as I prepared to share the truths from the Bible with the children in my class! I arrived early and prepared the room, setting out Bible learning activities and placing a basket of rhythm sticks by my chair in “the circle.” The children love to tap a beat while reciting the Bible verse. My co-teacher and I displayed the materials available to build a floating “ark.” Yes, water was involved. We anticipated a great time of Bible study and learning. Why do I get so excited? I teach children because of what I see taking place in the lives of children and their families.

Imagine the following taking place with children in your church

The children entered the room one by one and we greeted each enthusiastically with hugs and high-fives. Timothy and his parents arrived at our door a bit apprehensive– they just moved to our city and this was their first visit to our church. Mom and Dad reassured Timothy (and themselves) that they were just across the hall. After a brief snack, we jumped into Bible study. Timothy settled in. Bible games were played, the story of Noah told, songs were sung, questions were asked and answered, and arks were built. I was so proud of the children as they included Timothy in conversation and activities.

She thanked us for teaching her son and investing in him.

The following week, Timothy and his family returned. His mother told us that when they left church the week before, Timothy expressed how much he liked Sunday School and that they must come back. She thanked us for teaching her son and investing in him.

Because of my passion for teaching children, I prayed that the Holy Spirit would teach through me. I studied the lesson and I learned something new even though I had taught lessons about Noah many times before.

This is my story and my passion because I know that teaching is a privilege, a responsibility, a calling, and an act of obedience but it also brings me great joy. Jesus commands in Matthew 28:19, “Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” Teaching children is a high calling. Boys and girls should have teachers who love God, are committed to His word, and live accordingly. Is God calling you to be a teacher of children? If you are already teaching, don’t forget why you are doing what you do. The little children need you!

Donna Peavey is a member of BACE and Professor of Christian Education, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, LA.