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Posts Tagged ‘sunday school’

Cubes - 379 - INFLUENCE

Influence can be good or bad … lets consider the good.

Who has influenced you?

Who has changed your life?

What you do …

What you say …

How you think …

How you live …

There are many in my life who have influenced me for good. My parents, other family members, friends along the way, teachers, my hubby, my children.

One of the events, the other day, was that the youth pastor of our church was taking our son out for lunch, and it reminded me of a person who influenced me as a teen of about the same age as my son.

I did not grow up as a ‘church kid’ who was marinated in the things of that institution from conception onward. I went to Sunday School, and to the summer DVBS (Daily Vacation Bible School) programs, but I did not know the ins and the outs of church life (some days I see that as a blessing … after all, we church people are so very human).

What I did know about church came from my own observations … old women had VERY hairy legs, my grandmother sang like Lucille Ball, do NOT run in the sanctuary, and that church is a place where you get cookies and juice (truly, feeding my sugar-cravings was the way to ensure I came back).

The most important learning I received at church came from my Sunday School teacher when I was in middle school.

Beth was a lovely, loving lady. Not a nasty word was ever spoken from her mouth, and she greeted each of us with a warm, welcoming and sincere embrace. She was a wife of a pig farmer, and mother to two little boys. They did not have much money, yet her eyes glittered with more joy than any other person I knew. She loved us all equally, whether we were a ‘church kid’ or just some kid from the community who was brought faithfully to Sunday School each and every week.

In Beth’s presence I felt cared for, accepted, and loved far beyond what I expected from someone who was not family. It was the way that Beth loved me, loved all the girls in that class, that made me see the possibilities of a life with Jesus as the model. And, for me, Beth was that model of Christ’s love for me.

She shared of her life as a believer in Christ, she shared of her life as a wife, as a mom. She held nothing back when she shared of her own experiences in those roles.

She lived the life of being patient and kind, she did not envy, or boast, and was not proud. She did not dishonor others, and was not self-seeking, easily angered, and kept no record of wrongs. She did not delight in evil but rejoiced with the truth. She always protected, always trusted, always hoped, always persevered.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7).

In her Sunday School class, Beth taught … from the Bible. My most long lasting memory is a continuing lesson on faith, that was rooted in:

“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.”
Hebrews 11:1 (NLT)

The teaching of that lesson … teaching about hope, teaching about faith influenced my life even until today. And she communicated love in the most consistent of ways.

I am thankful for this sister-in Christ, who influenced me so significantly.

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I remember vividly being dropped off at Sunday School as a child, and being very nervous, because I knew that the teacher would want to hear my memory verse. I was never so good at memorizing.

imagesAs an adult, I am still not so good at memorizing.

Oh, I have students memorize, I encourage others to memorize, and I still sometimes try to memorize … I am just not very good at it.

The memorizing of scripture is a good, helpful and wise thing to be actively, regularly doing.

Presently I am working on a portion of Psalm 139 … I aim to have memorized it by a speaking date in May (imagine a clammy-palmed, dry throat, finger-nail chewing middle aged lady cowering in a chair … that would me be imagining that I can actually do this!

But, I am going to try … because it really is good for me!

John Piper is a brilliant author, speaker, pastor (I also realized when watching this video that he does a great impression of a bobble head doll). Check out his eight sentences on the value of memorizing scripture.

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