What Sunday School Members Can Do to Strengthen Class, Part 2

Thursday 24th January, 2008

In Part 1 of this two part series, I said that revolutionary Sunday School is Sunday School that makes the most difference for our Lord and His Kingdom's work. I said revolutionary Sunday School requires that we work together. EVERY member has a place and part to play in the effective ministry of the Sunday School. Every member is needed and should be invited to make the Bible study session, relationships, and ministry life-changing.

In Part 1, I shared six ways members of a Sunday School class can strengthen their class. The six ways came from an interesting article written by Gene Taylor entitled What Can I Do? In the article, Taylor refers to Sunday School classes as Bible classes. His six ways were: (1) attend every Bible class, (2) bring/encourage others, (3) do Bible lessons, (4) pray that the Bible classes be effective, (5) participate in class discussions, and (6) volunteer to teach.

In the concluding part of this series, I want to add four additional ways class members can strengthen the ministry of their class. These come from my own experiences and observations. While the list is not comprehensive consider the following additional ways:

  • HOST/PLAN A CLASS FELLOWSHIP. Relationships are important. Trust is deepened through time in class and experiences away from class. As trust is deepened, transparency and genuine needs and concerns are able to be expressed in the class. Every time you plan a fellowship, make sure you invite guests. As they meet class members, they will feel even more comfortable entering the church facilities to come to your classroom. While hosting and planning fellowships is a lot of work, you will help lighten the load of class leadership while making an important contribution toward assimilation, outreach, and discipleship efforts of the class.
  • INVEST IN NEW CLASS MEMBERS/NEW CHRISTIANS. Think about how much more you would have grown if you had someone to walk with you through those early weeks and that first year. Think about questions you could have asked. Think about the value of a relationship that cares and prays for you when you don't know many people yet. Ask your pastor for suggestions for discipleship materials to share with the new member/Christian. Offer to attend the new member class with them. Pick them up to come to class fellowship activities. Touch base weekly. Minister to them in times of stress and need.
  • SERVE GOD IN THE CLASS, CHURCH, AND/OR COMMUNITY. Find a place to make a difference as a significant part of the body of Christ. Discover your gifts. Discover your passions. Use your abilities, personality, and interests for God. Apply God's truth in practical ways through serving. Look for opportunities to touch lives and make a difference for the Kingdom through the work of the class, church, or Kingdom-at-large. Share how serving has blessed you. Encourage others to join you in serving. Serving will enrich your life and your class sessions and ministry!
  • PRAY/PREPARE FOR THE BIRTH OF A NEW CLASS. Yes, birthing a new class does strengthen your class. It gives purpose and direction to your study of God's Word and your reaching, discipling, and assimilating efforts. It gives you a goal, something to work toward together. Many classes lack a focus that brings every member together for a common purpose. Your prayer and preparation for the birth of a new class adds anticipation to the launch. It makes apprenticing more leaders essential. It calls you to stretch, grow, and lead. You, your class, the new class, and the Kingdom will benefit from your prayer and preparation!
Added together with the list from Part 1 gives you ten great target areas to lead your class to strengthen your ministry! If there are no expectations of members, they will grow less. They will stretch less. When much is expected, they will surprise us! Share this list. Ask them to covenant with you to make your class one that God can use to change your community and world one life at a time beginning with you. Be revolutionary!

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