I realize we are in a day and time where there is only so much money and time. But I would hate for a self-defeating cycle to bring decline to Sunday School simply because of the wrong attitude. If Sunday School is not a priority for our time and money, it will get only the leftovers and in turn show the results. If you invest and expect nothing, you should not be surprised when you get what you expected.
Be honest. How do you think about money for Sunday School? Do you think of it as spending it or as investing it? How do you think about your time for Sunday School? Do you think of it as time spent preparing and working? Or do you view it as an investment? Your attitude makes a difference! Examine with me those two attitudes:
- SPENDERS. Those who think of time and money “being spent” on Sunday School, often consider the work more as a chore than a privilege. They focus on an activity rather than a ministry and people. “Spenders” more often dread Sunday School purchases and work than looking forward to it with anticipation. Leaders who “spend money” are more focused on the past and tend to budget based on what was spent last year. They often focus more on those already there rather than new people. Directors and teachers who “spend time” on Sunday School tend to look for more and more ways to decrease the amount of time the work takes. “Spenders” are more hesitant to risk and less likely to see growth. “Spenders” dread making visits
- INVESTORS. Those with the attitude of “investing” tend to see opportunities, people not yet reached, and lives not yet changed. They tend to focus on building upon the foundation rather than upon maintaining the status quo. “Investors” lead those responsible for budgeting to increase the investment in Sunday School wherever possible in order to see even greater results. “Investors” see ministry opportunities and new leaders to be discovered, enlisted, trained, and mobilized into service. “Investors” look forward to what God is going to do and to serving as teachers, directors, and workers in Sunday School. Those with an “investing” attitude consider the time and money invested wisely as “well spent” and invested in Kingdom work. “Investors” tend to be more willing to follow God’s leadership and more willing to risk it all in order to be obedient and see the results He desires.
I realize that I have painted only a partial picture of the extremes, but measure yourself. Where does your attitude fall? Where does the attitude of other leaders in your Sunday School fall? What can you do to encourage other leaders to consider investing in Sunday School? How can you lead them to begin changing their attitude from spending to investing? Help them to see the possibility. Pray with them. Raise expectations. Be revolutionary!