Maria is a single mom in our church in West Des Moines, Iowa. She has a little boy who is in elementary school. About a year ago, our church asked the guidance counselor at the elementary school where our church meets to give us names of families needing a little help with food during the Christmas holiday season. Maria and her boy were identified to us and we helped them with a food basket. Later they started attending our Sunday school.
I met Maria in our class one day and I was surprised at the refreshing, honest questions she was asking. She would ask questions like “Why would God do that?” and “So how does a person know God?”
Our adult class encourages discussion. We sit in a circle and the conversation, questions and stories are always lively. Maria is Hispanic and was Roman Catholic. She knew of God in only a distant way. After several months of studying the Scriptures and hearing the Word preached, she responded to the gospel invitation one Sunday morning to ask Jesus to come into her life in a personal way.
She has been baptized and is actively sharing her new faith where she works and with her extended family. It began in our Sunday school class where open discussion and real-life application is always stressed as the Bible study unfolds each week. Our class members are a diverse mix of long-time believers and brand new seekers of the Lord. We have a couple of ladies from a halfway house attending. A few of the members struggle with addictions. Some of our folks have been believers for a long time. But in the class all the walls come down and the discussion flows around the Bible passages. Our teacher is quick to tell stories that reveal his own honest struggles. As he often says, “We are on this journey together.” His stories of spiritual transformation are often followed with honest stories and questions from the class.
Are you seeing lives transformed in your Sunday school ministry? Encourage members to share, to ask honest questions. Don’t be in a hurry to always finish the Bible passage for the day. Help your class be a discussion-oriented class. Reflect on what the Bible passages mean for our lives. And by all means, reach out to the lost, those struggling with life, those who hurt, who are hungry and need the Lord in their lives.
Are you seeing lives transformed in your Sunday school ministry? Leave us a comment and tell us about spiritual transformation in your church and class.
Richard Nations is the Church Health Team Leader for the Baptist Convention of Iowa, Des Moines, Iowa. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.