My wife, youngest son, and I travelled ten hours round trip by car yesterday to spend two and a half hours with family that we see more often at funerals than on happy occasions. Yesterday was my grandmother’s birthday party, certainly a happy occasion. She is 91 but becoming a bit frail. She was happy to see us. And seeing her physical state, I was all the more glad to spend some time with her since she expects me to do her funeral.
As I looked around the house where the party was held, I saw so much influence on my life. So many are Christians and active church-goers. There was a love of family that was obvious. The amount of respect for elders was surprisingly refreshing. There was a strong work ethic that I was amazed to hear even among some of my youngest second cousins. It began with grandparents who were not afraid to stand up for and teach what they believed. And continued with parents and their children who did the same.
It reminded me of the potential influence for good the body of Christ can have. But sometimes in church, we become independent and unwilling to submit to another even when it would be for our own good. Sometimes Baptists (and other denominations) can be too autonomous and democratic for our own good.
Adult Sunday School is one place, one family, that has the potential in the church for such a great positive influence in the lives of attenders. What if your class through prayer become willing to do whatever it took to become better disciples of Jesus Christ? How might you, as a class, do so?
I can think of many methods, but one that could be revolutionary is setting up accountability partners. What would they do? How could it work? Consider the following:
- groups of two or no more than three (of the same gender),
- meeting for a few minutes together every other week (in class or between classes),
- sharing prayer requests together (writing them down),
- praying together (in class, by phone, and separately),
- asking about application of last week’s lesson,
- asking each other about practicing the spiritual disciplines, and
- encourage one another.
What would eventually happen if your class began moving in this direction? What might God do in your midst? What would happen to relationships? What would happen to the spiritual maturity of the group? How might that attract others to the group? How could you integrate new people into the system? Could a pair of accountability partners accept one more? Could a pair of accountability partners split up to take two new people?
For more ideas about increasing accountability in your class, check out Making Disciples Through Accountability in the Adult Sunday School Class. Think about it. Pray about it. Go where God leads. Be revolutionary!