Be-Attitudes for Teachers: A Devotional for Sunday School & Other Bible Teachers
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. (Proverbs 17:22)
Who says learning can't be fun? You hold out the word of life to your students. Do you expect them to grab hold of that life-giving truth when the atmosphere of your classroom is more like a morgue - cold, sterile, lifeless?
You bring them good news of great joy .... a Savior. You point them toward the full, abundant life in Christ. Are they really supposed to believe that kind of life exists when you barely crack a smile, when laughter is frowned upon, when they aren't allowed to enjoy themselves in class?
The encouragement of Scripture is intended to bring hope. If your presentation of the Word sounds more like a dirge, won't your students become despondent preferring to be buried alive than continue sitting in this low-spirited, stoic eulogy?
The atmosphere, interaction, and methodology need to match the message. Life .... joy .... hope! Christians, of all people, have reason to laugh, to have fun, to enjoy life and one another.
But this is serious stuff, you say. We are talking about eternity! That's exactly right. Heaven is a joyous place with much feasting and rejoicing.
Look at Proverbs 17:22. "A cheerful heart is good medicine." Perhaps the health of your teaching can be measured by how light-hearted you are within it. In no way does this minimize or replace truth. Instead, it showcases it by expressing congruence between life and theology.
First, being able to laugh together in the process of learning is spiritually healthy. It reflects the abundant life Jesus came to give. People do not laugh when they lack joy and happiness.
Second, to enjoy one another is relationally healthy. It reflects love and fellowship. People do not enjoy each other when there is ill-will between them.
And third, allowing for spontaneous, unrehearsed humor is organizationally healthy. It reflects a proper focus. People do not find humor when they are so tense and rigid over getting through an agenda that task comes before people.
Learning should be enjoyable. People learn more when they like coming to class. As the teacher, you set the tone. Your heart condition prescribes the kind of atmosphere, interaction, and methodology you allow in your classroom. A cheerful heart promotes health in the teaching-learning process.
For Teachers: When forced or planned, humor can have a deadening affect. That which stems from the joy of the Lord makes a difference. Take time to read the following verses and draw conclusions on how you can attain a heart overflowing with joy and gladness. - Psalm 5:11, 16:11, 19:8, 28:7, 40:16, 68:3, 90:14, 118:24
For Leaders: Evaluate your leadership style in light of this devotional. What kind of working atmosphere do you provide? What kind of interaction do you encourage among workers? How do you carry out administrative procedures?
For Group Use: Start by asking teachers to share some of the funniest moments they have had in the classroom. Also ask them to describe some of their most enjoyable moments with their students. Then do the devotional.
(Last updated 3/01/20)