The Reluctant Sunday School Teacher

I have a confession to make. I was not looking forward to teaching Sunday School this year, and on some Sundays I still trudge out the door instead of merrily skipping to teach. I had numerous reasons for my lack of enthusiasm. We are living in a pandemic, which means I would be donning a mask. I have four kids with whom I had just come off of distance learning. I had my fill of teaching in any capacity. Spending more time teaching was not on my to-do list. I didn’t want to give up my time in adult Bible study. I love asking questions and listening to the questions others ask.  

Being a Sunday School teacher was not what I wanted.

It’s what our church needed at the moment.

Growing in Appreciation

I have grown to appreciate the position. I don’t appreciate it because of the mask. I haven’t grown in my affection for it because of the stickers or crafts. I’m not showing up on Sunday for the intellectual conversations. It’s not because each lesson is put together or run smoothly. It’s not for the money. It’s not for the fame.

I’ve grown to appreciate the position because week after week, the little faces I have been appointed to teach point me to Christ in the simplest terms. Week after week, I am reminded by this group of four- to seven-year-olds of the work of Christ on the cross and in my life.

I’m humbled when I ask a question and they give the same answer at four years old as I would at thirty-five years old. The answer to all of the Sunday School questions is Jesus. As we grow, life gets more complicated, but the answer to our questions remains the same: Jesus.

The Answer is Jesus 

If we are fifteen or thirty and struggling with feeling that we don’t belong, the answer is Jesus. Christ tells us who we are. Because of his work, we are His children and heirs to his kingdom.

If we are thirty or sixty and struggling with what we should be doing in life, the answer is Jesus. We don’t need to deny the fact that life decisions are tough. We can rest assured knowing that Christ will use us to serve our neighbor.

 If we are sixty or ninety and struggling to rest in our retirement, the answer is Jesus. He has told us rest is good and necessary. He took our burdens to the cross so we can rest in His promises instead of striving to prove our worth.

If we are nine or ninety and struggling with powerlessness, the answer is Jesus. We have much less control over our lives at any age than we would like to think. The answer to the anxiousness we feel when we come face to face with our powerlessness is Jesus. He is our Good Shepherd, holding and leading us through life. 

We can’t deny that generally, life gets more complicated as we grow and age. Thankfully, the simplicity of the answer to those complexities remains the same: Jesus. He flows into all the complicated nooks and crannies of our lives, for the young and the old. He is at work for us and we are His children.  

The answer I give for why I’ve grown to appreciate Sunday School is the same for all of the complexities of life: Jesus.

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Katie Koplin

Katie Koplin resides in west-central Minnesota with her husband and four kids, where fields of grain meet woods and water. She keeps busy caring for her kids, writing for her blog (, drinking coffee by the pot, quilting, reading, camping, leading Bible studies, and working at her much-adored local library. Her writing and speaking focus on encouraging others to live in freedom, equipping people to see Christ for them in Scripture, and empowering others with the great love Christ has for us.

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