I teach jr. high Sunday School at our church. Most people look at me with awe and say, “you VOLUNTEER to teach teenagers?” Yep, I sure do. Jr. highers are so funny, and so open to new ideas. They’re not stuck in trying to be uber mature, like sr. highers and they’re ready for some higher levels of thinking, unlike their elementary school counterparts.
Well, I had a lesson planned out for today. It was pretty good, IMHO. But last night (amid AJ throwing up several times!) I dreamed about a completely different lesson. Different method, different topic. So I went with it. Was it God? Or was it my subconscious? Who knows? But I really do feel like God led me to teach this lesson. I had the students number a piece of paper and write:
1) The number of Bible verses they have memorized
2) The number of hours they spend helping others and participating in local missions every week
3) The number of people they have brought to faith in Jesus Christ as personal Savior.
Then they drew a line separating number 3 from 4 and continued with:
4) The number of times they sinned this week
5) Did you honor your parents all the time?
6) What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done?
Things were pretty quiet at this point and I was afraid I had scared the new guy away!
We talked about earning our way into heaven and feeling completely hopeless about our behavior.
We looked up Bible verses pertaining to being saved by faith: John 3:16, Philippians (I’ll come back later with specifics!), Romans 8:1-2, etc.
We talked about being saved by faith and grace. There is a different religion in our midst that requires one to complete good works in order to make it into heaven, and I think the teens really needed to hear that Jesus died for their salvation–that they were created because God loves us. They needed to hear that the Bible teaches that all who believe in Jesus and accept him as Lord are saved!
Then we discussed loving God with all our hearts, and how out of that love comes a natural desire to please Him with our actions.
I was really pleased with the students’ comments and questions, and I DO believe that I was led to teach that this morning.