What is the fruit of a Sunday School class? How do you measure Sunday School success? Before you answer those questions, let me suggest that your answer to those questions will answer another question: Is your Sunday School “an event” or “strategy?”
EVENT. If the fruit of a Sunday School class is about attendance on Sunday morning and attenders who know more about the Bible, then Sunday School is an event. The focus is on what happens on Sunday morning. The focus is more on those who are already gathered.
STRATEGY. If the fruit of a Sunday School class is obedience, ministry, missions, mobilization into service, and changed lives, then Sunday School is a strategy. The focus is on a plan for developing lives and leaders and setting them loose on the harvest. It is about how Sunday School can help the church carry out the work of the Great Commission. The focus is more on those not involved and how attenders can impact them.
In a recent newsletter edition of ChurchSmart Resources, I read the following statement:
Leadership cannot be measured by the performance of the leader, but by the fruit of those who follow.
Let that sink in. How can you measure the leadership of a Sunday School teacher? How can you measure the leadership of a pastor or Sunday School director? The answer given is clear: “by the fruit of those who follow.” A corollary statement is that if there are no followers, there is no leadership and thus no fruit.
Pastor, director, and teacher, what are you expecting from Sunday School? Where are you leading? What is the fruit of your class? How are you measuring success? How are you leading your followers to measure success?
It is not too late to make adjustments in your leadership and expectations. It is not too late to make course correction. The work is too important to give up or grow weary in well-doing. Shift attention to the fruit, to the outcomes that should result from revolutionary Sunday School efforts. Your leadership matters. You matter. Your Sunday School is depending on you. There is still work to be done in making disciples of all nations. Make disciples. Be revolutionary!