Closing Sunday School moments are critical. Too often they are neglected and discipleship opportunities are missed. What are some of the ways neglect happens? In Part 1, I shared six sources of closing moment neglect: poor planning, poor time management, not starting on time, too much class business, too much material, and interruptions. In Part 2, I address what can teachers do to avoid closing moment neglect.
Responses to Sources of Neglect
- Poor planning. Begin preparation early in the week. Ensure that your lesson plan includes closing moments. Plan everything in the lesson build toward these moments. This requires a clear sense of time in planning early and middle moments.
- Poor time management. Even with great planning, chasing rabbits or moving randomly through the lesson can leave no time for closing moment actions. Guide each lesson through expected time allowances purposefully toward crucial closing moments.
- Not starting on time. Start on time. Establish and communicate this time. They wait for you to start before arriving, so get started! My class does class business before start time. As a result, we are able to spend the entire hour on the lesson with everyone present.
- Too much class business. Announcements, prayer requests, and prayer time can take increasing amounts of lesson time. Establish a set time to start and end class business. When more is needed, start early rather than extend it later. If necessary for special reasons one Sunday, trim the lesson but don’t cut out plans for closing moments.
- Too much material. When too much is planned in early and middle moments, closing moments will suffer. Trim passages. Focus on essential background. Shorten explanation. Streamline discussion, group time, and class activities to ensure closing moments have the impact desired.
- Interruptions. Plan for interruptions you expect, and adjust when necessary for surprises. Deal with regular sources of interruption. Never neglect closing moments. If necessary, read the scripture, share the truth/main point, and lead participants to identify what God expects as a result.
Think through this list of responses to closing moment neglect. Which responses would help your class? What can you do this week to ensure that your closing moments are life-changing? Make disciples. Be revolutionary!
I address neglect of closing moments (chapter 16) and much more in my book, Disciple-Making Encounters: Revolutionary Sunday School. Press the link to learn more and order a copy. For discounts on larger orders, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.