Posted: 1/28/20 at 3:40pm. Post by Tony Brooks.
“Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:19 NIV)
Teachers, whether in schools or in churches, should be celebrated and thanked. Here are some ideas:
Have a commissioning prayer for school officials and teachers the Sunday before school starts. They need to know you care about how they make a difference in the lives of children and parents in this challenging age.
Have a commissioning prayer for Sunday School/small group teachers the Sunday they start. Help them to understand that they are missionaries and disciple makers. Perhaps members of their class/group could surround them as you have the prayer.
Care for them. Remind them throughout the year of your care. Send birthday cards, thank-you cards, and more. Call them once a month and ask how to pray for them. Do not expect your pastor to do all this. Have the Sunday School director and staff help show care throughout the year.
If you want to go the extra mile, show your appreciation in other tangible ways. Previous churches I have been a part of have had a Wednesday night celebration of teachers. The teachers and their families came for dinner at no cost, and special bags of candy and notes of encouragement were at their table. Have class members write thank-you notes to place in the bags. (These were churches that had traditional Wednesday night meals.)
In one church, FBC Whiteville, NC, Charlie Langston had a place on a lake just a few minutes away. He gave me permission to use his place as a retreat for teachers’ families. I would thank the teacher and ask, “When is a good time for the you and your family to get away overnight?” I would let Charlie know, and he would give me the key. I took sodas and snacks that the family enjoyed along with a thank-you note and left it at his place. I took the key to the teacher. I always checked the next day to make sure everything was clean when they finished and then return the key back to Charlie. What a great gift that was!
Celebrate them! Highlight a different class each month in your newsletter and show a video before the service. Get a testimony from the teacher and/or class members about their class to share.
Teachers are at the forefront of discipleship. What they do has eternal implications. How are you showing them your appreciation?